Treasure retains box-office crown
Nicolas Cage's National Treasure, about a race to find a fortune hidden by the signers of the Declaration of Independence, was the top movie for a third straight weekend with $17.1 million US in ticket sales, according to studio estimates yesterday. Mike Nichols' caustic sex drama Closer -- starring Julia Roberts, Jude Law, Natalie Portman and Clive Owen -- opened strongly in second place, taking in $7.7 million. Playing in 476 theatres, Closer had a healthy average of $16,176 a cinema, compared to a $5,286 average in 3,243 theatres for National Treasure. The martial-arts epic House of Flying Daggers, premiered well in limited release. Rounding out the top five list were the Polar Express, $11 million, the Incredibles, $9.2 million and the SpongeBob SquarePants Movie, $7.8 million.
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