SANTA MONICA, Calif., April 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- LIONSGATE® (NYSE: LGF), the leading next generation studio, emerged from a neck-and-neck box office race to claim the #1 spot with its action/comedy KICK-ASS. Director Matthew Vaughn's critically lauded, R-rated film took in $19,828,687 for the weekend, edging past the 3D animated family feature HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON. The latest release in Lionsgate's Tyler Perry franchise, TYLER PERRY'S WHY DID I GET MARRIED, TOO?, reached $54.8 million in its third week in release. Lionsgate secured over 6,500 screens this past weekend, representing 16% of the North American marketplace.
Based on the groundbreaking, best-selling comic by Mark Millar and John Romita Jr., KICK-ASS stars Aaron Johnson, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Mark Strong and Chloe Grace Moretz, and features Nicolas Cage. The screenplay is written by Vaughn and Jane Goldman. The producers are Matthew Vaughn, Brad Pitt, Tarquin Pack and Kris Thykier; Millar and Romita Jr. are co-producers. Lionsgate acquired North American distribution rights for $15 million last year.
Said Joe Drake, Lionsgate Co-Chief Operating Officer and Motion Picture Group President, "KICK-ASS is fantastic, highly original entertainment, and our marketing and distribution teams have brilliantly positioned it for a long and successful run. That kind of run is precisely what we are seeing on the international front, where KICK-ASS has demonstrated a very strong hold at the box office; in Great Britain alone, it's taken in nearly $13.8 million in 17 days."
Lionsgate's upcoming releases include: Robert Luketic's romantic comedy KILLERS, starring Ashton Kutcher and Katherine Heigl, opening June 4; Sylvester Stallone's action/thriller THE EXPENDABLES, with an all-star cast including Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Steve Austin, Eric Roberts and Mickey Rourke, opening August 13; and Daniel Stamm's horror movie THE LAST EXORCISM, produced by Eli Roth (HOSTEL), starring Patrick Fabian and Ashley Bell, opening August 27.
Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF - News) is the leading next generation studio with a strong and diversified presence in the production and distribution of motion pictures, television programming, home entertainment, family entertainment, video-on-demand and digitally delivered content. The Company has built a strong television presence in production of prime time cable and broadcast network series, distribution and syndication of programming through Debmar-Mercury and an array of channel assets. Lionsgate currently has nearly 20 shows on 10 different networks spanning its prime time production, distribution and syndication businesses, including such critically-acclaimed hits as "Mad Men," "Weeds" and "Nurse Jackie" along with new series such as "Blue Mountain State" and the syndication successes "Tyler Perry's House of Payne," its spinoff "Meet The Browns" and "The Wendy Williams Show."
Its feature film business has generated such recent hits as TYLER PERRY'S WHY DID I GET MARRIED TOO? and the critically-acclaimed PRECIOUS, which has garnered nearly $50 million at the North American box office and won two Academy Awards®. The Company's home entertainment business has grown to more than 7% market share and is an industry leader in box office-to-DVD revenue conversion rate. Lionsgate handles a prestigious and prolific library of approximately 12,000 motion picture and television titles that is an important source of recurring revenue and serves as the foundation for the growth of the Company's core businesses. The Lionsgate brand remains synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the world.