Cresting a wave of good reviews, "Kong: Skull Island" topped the domestic box office, racking up a mighty $61 million. The ensemble cast includes Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson, Brie Larson and John Goodman.
Kong: Skull Island emerged victorious after a battle of the beasts that pitted the giant ape movie against Logan, the Wolverine's last stand. The R-rated pic, which sees Hugh Jackman reprising his role as the X-Men character Wolverine, has earned $152.7 million in total.
GET MORE: Compare Kong: Skull Island vs. Godzilla here!
Kong is king of the box office this weekend. It's the second in the planned "monster universe" following the latest "Godzilla", which grossed $529.1 million worldwide in 2014. Audience members under the age of 25 gave the film an "A " CinemaScore.
Kong opened with a respectable $61 million debut, stealing some of Logan's thunder and snagging a solid spot at number one. Basking in near-universal acclaim, the thriller about a black photographer (Daniel Kaluuya) meeting his white girlfriend's (Allison Williams) sinister family has coasted on organic hype. The R-rated movie has earned almost $154 million domestically.
In just two weeks in theaters, "Logan" has brought in almost $153 million.
Lionsgate's faith-based title The Shack, starring Octavia Spencer and Sam Worthington, and Warners' The Lego Batman Movie rounded out the top five.
Ticket sales were up almost 25% from the same weekend in 2016 - a period that overlapped with the second weekend of "Zootopia" and the debut of "10 Cloverfield Lane".
Overall box office is up around 0.3 percent from the same frame previous year. Next weekend brings the release of "Beauty and the Beast", which should expand 2017's lead. "But they're going to be looking for a half-billion worldwide to make it a certifiable hit", said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for box office tracker comScore. "You don't have to wait until May to release blockbusters any more".