Despite a news cycle dominated by Whitney Houston's sudden death and Sunday night's Grammy Awards, a record number of people showed up at the movies this weekend…largely to the benefit of two new films: Rachel McAdams's romantic drama The Vow, and Denzel Washington's thriller Safe House.
Both titles were neck-in-neck all weekend for the number-one spot. The Vow took it with $41.7 million to Safe House's $39.3 (perhaps due to a little Valentine's Day push?), but both films vastly over-performed and helped the box office reach new heights after last year's scary slump.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Safe House played far better than expected among females, who made up 50 percent of the audience. The pic also drew an ethnically diverse audience, with African-Americans making up 38 percent of the audience, caucasians 23 percent and Hispanics 31 percent.
Next week, Idris Elba's Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance goes to battle against the Will Smith produced This Means War, starring Reese Witherspoon and Angela Bassett.
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(Photo: Courtesy Universal Pictures)