Liam Neeson’s survival thriller, The Grey, beat industry expectations and finished on top of the US box office this weekend, taking in $20 million.
The Grey tells the grim tale of a group of oil refinery workers who battle the harsh Alaskan weather and wild wolves in their way to safety after the crash of their airplane.
Last weekends box office champion, Underworld: Awakening, dropped to the second place with $12.5 million.
Another big surprise was the bounty hunter tale, One For The Money, starring Katherine Heigl, which made an impressive $11.7 million, landing in the third spot. Hollywood insiders were doubtful that the comedy, which cost $40 million to make, would even crack the $10 mark in its opening.
Last weeks surprise, George Lucass historical drama about WWII black airmen, continued to impress taking in $10.4 million. Lucas had to invest his own money to finance the film because Hollywood studios deemed it unsellable because it was too black.
The announcement of Oscar nominations last week has also pushed up the gains of several movies such as The Descendants ($6.5 millions), The Artist ($3.4 millions) and Hugo ($2.3 millions).