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'American Made,' 'Kingsman' and 'It' in photo finish at the domestic box office

BILL SKARSGÅRD as Pennywise in New Line Cinema's horror thriller "IT," a Warner Bros. Pictures release.

Weekend Box Office September 29-October 1, 2017

(KUTV) Weekend estimates have the domestic box office finishing in a dead heat as Tom Cruise's "American Made," last week's champ "Kingsman: The Golden Circle" and horror favorite "It" are all expected to finish Sunday with $17 million. "It" has been temporarily given the crown with $17.3 million, but we'll have to wait until Monday to officially announce a winner.

Regardless of how the weekend actuals all play out, $17 million is a fantastic fourth-weekend total for "It" as the surprise hit fell only 41 percent and now has a domestic total of $291 million. The worldwide total sits just above $550 million.

"American Made," a comedic take on the true story of Barry Seal (Cruise), a former TWA pilot who was recruited by CIA to perform surveillance flyovers in South America and ended up being a mule for a drug cartel, is slated to earn approximately $17.01 million in its debut weekend against a budget of $50 million. The film is playing far better overseas where it has already earned $64.7 million for a worldwide total of $81.7 million.

"Kingsman: The Golden Circle," the sequel to 2015'a surprise hit "Kingsman: The Secret Service," dropped 56 percent for $17 million. The domestic total now sits at $66.7 million, slightly behind the original's $67.9 million after 10 days.

In fourth place is "The LEGO Ninjago Movie" with $12 million. That's an excellent hold that sees the film dropping only 41 percent from its opening weekend. I finally caught up with the film last week and while I wasn't overly pleased with the experience, the kids in the audience were clearly having a fantastic time. Still, the $35 million domestic total is nearly $100 million behind "The LEGO Movie" 10-day total of $130 million.

In fifth place is Sony's "Flatliners" with $6.7 million. Considering the film wasn't screened for critics and didn't have Thursday-night preview screenings, that total might be disappointing, but the studio clearly knew they had a film that wasn't going to play well with audiences or critics and simply rolled the dice by hoping that word-of-mouth wouldn't spread quickly enough to mute the opening weekend. From all accounts, $6.7 million is far more than the film deserved.

In sixth place is "Battle of the Sexes" with $3.4 million. I have to admit that I'm a little disappointed with that total. The film tells the story of Billie Jean King and her legendary match against Bobby Riggs I 1973, but the movie's themes are so timely, Emma Stone and Steve Carell give excellent performances and the tone is more joyful than you might expect. Hopefully the film will have a long run at the box office.

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