Josh Brolin (left) and Will Smith star in "Men in Black 3."
Columbia Pictures
Josh Brolin (left) and Will Smith star in "Men in Black 3."

Story highlights

"Men In Black 3" topped the box office with an estimated $55 million

"The Avengers" held strong in second place with $37 million

"Battleship" and "The Dictator" took up the next two spots on the chart —  

Sony’s $230 million alien-zapping sequel “Men In Black 3” topped the box office over the three-day weekend frame with an estimated $55 million.

Although the Will Smith action-comedy didn’t exactly trip out of the gate, “Men In Black 3’s” start is troubling considering its gigantic budget and supposed built-in audience. Fortunately, as is so often the case these days, international results proved stronger. Sony says the film has taken in $132 million overseas in its initial week of release.

Marvel’s “The Avengers” held strong in second place with $37 million – a 34 percent drop from last weekend. The superhero ensemble crossed the $500 million mark on Saturday, its 23rd day of release, effectively smashing the record previously held by “Avatar,” which took 32 days to reach the same milestone. It’s earned $513.7 million total.

Last weekend’s openers “Battleship” and “The Dictator” took up the next two spots on the chart. “Battleship” plummeted 58 percent (on a holiday weekend no less!) to $10.8 million, giving it a 10-day total of $44.3 million against a $209 million budget. “The Dictator,” meanwhile, dropped by a more modest (but still not that great) 45 percent to $9.6 million, resulting in a $41.4 million 12-day total.

Rounding out the Top 5, the Oren Peli-produced horror horror flick “Chernobyl Diaries” couldn’t achieve “Paranormal Activity”-sized numbers. “Chernobyl” earned a weak $8 million in three days – with $3.5 million of that coming from Friday alone (a sure sign of frontloadedness).

1. “Men In Black 3” – $55.0 million

2. “The Avengers” – $37.0 million

3. “Battleship” – $10.8 million

4. “The Dictator” – $9.6 million

5. “Chernobyl Diaries” – $8.0 million

Check back tomorrow for the full Memorial Day weekend box office report, and follow me on Twitter for up-to-the-minute box office updates.

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