Page last updated at 09:35 GMT, Monday, 5 January 2009

Marley still box office top dog

Marley and Me stars Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson
Marley and Me stars Owen Wilson, Jennifer Aniston and a Labrador

Canine comedy Marley and Me has topped the US box office chart for a second consecutive week, pushing its overall takings past the $100m (68.9m) mark.

The movie, about a puppy acquired by newlyweds, made $24.1m (16.6m) on its second weekend of release, according to box office tracker Media by Numbers.

Adam Sandler's latest comedy Bedtime Stories came second, making $20.3m (14m) between Friday and Sunday.

Brad Pitt's film The Curious Case of Benjamin Button was in third place.

The epic fantasy, which is up for five prizes at this weekend's Golden Globe awards, made $18.4m (12.7m) on its second weekend in North American cinemas.

Tom Cruise's wartime thriller Valkyrie and Jim Carrey's comedy Yes Man stayed in fourth and fifth place respectively.

1. Marley and Me - $24.1m
2. Bedtime Stories - $20.3m
3. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button- $18.4m
4. Valkyrie - $14m
5. Yes Man - $13.9m
Source: Media by Numbers

According to Media by Numbers, US and Canada takings totalled $9.63 billion (6.66bn) in 2008 - just down on 2007's record tally of $9.68 billion (6.69bn).

"The movie industry is totally holding its own in the face of the recession," said its president, Paul Dergarabedian.

With no new films out on widespread release in the US last weekend, those who could see World War II saga Defiance - released on Friday in just two cinemas - went in their droves.

The film, which stars Daniel Craig as a Jewish freedom fighter who takes arms against the Nazis in Eastern Europe, took an impressive $121,000 (83,400) from its two locations.

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