"The Marksman" tops North American box office in opening weekend

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 17 (Xinhua) -- Open Road's action thriller film "The Marksman" sprinted to the top of the North American box office in its opening weekend with an estimated 3.22 million U.S. dollars from 1,975 theaters between Friday and Sunday, according to studio figures collected by measurement firm Comscore.

Directed by Robert Lorenz and starring Liam Neeson, the film follows a hardened U.S. rancher living in an Arizona border town who helps an 11-year-old boy escape a Mexican drug cartel.

It's the second Liam Neeson movie released by Open Road during the COVID-19 pandemic after "Honest Thief" which opened last October and stayed atop the North American box office for two weeks.

"The Marksman" holds an approval rating of 33 percent based on 55 reviews to date on review-aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes.

"It's a universal truth that even in a depressed market lies opportunity. And there are plenty of people who want to go to the movies," Open Road boss Tom Ortenberg was quoted as saying by online news site Deadline Hollywood.

"Like Honest Thief, The Marksman has filled a void in the marketplace," he told the news site, adding that "there is a great thirst for product among consumers, and the opportunity is there."

According to Comscore, only 37 percent of North American theaters are currently open.

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