Entertainment & Arts

Captain America tops North America film chart for third week

Chris Evans and Scarlett Johansson in Captain America Image copyright Film company
Image caption The Winter Soldier is the third Marvel movie to feature Captain America

Marvel's Captain America: The Winter Soldier has claimed a third week topping North America's film chart.

Starring Chris Evans, Robert Redford and Scarlett Johansson, it made $26.2m (£15.5m), beating avian animation Rio 2 into second place.

Heaven is for Real, the story of a young boy who claims to have visited heaven during a near-death experience, was number three over Easter weekend.

But Johnny Depp's new sci-fi thriller Transcendence fared poorly.

Directed by Batman cinematographer Wally Pfister, the film sees Depp playing a dying computer genius, who uploads his consciousness to a supercomputer and achieves a problematic digital afterlife.

After suffering poor reviews, the movie opened in fourth place, taking $11m (£6.5m), a fraction of its $100m production budget.

Image copyright Film company
Image caption Transcendence is due to open in the UK on 25 April

It is Depp's third movie in a row to stumble at the box office, following last summer's The Lone Ranger and Tim Burton's comedy misfire Dark Shadows.

"As we approach the summer movie season, box-office drawing power becomes more about the concept of the movie rather than its star," said Paul Dergarabedian. senior media analyst for box-office tracker Rentrak.

"It may not have been so much (about) Johnny Depp, but audiences right now like brands that they know."

The US top 10 also contained three movies with a religious theme. Following Heaven is for Real came biblical epic Noah at nine, and God's Not Dead at 10.

The latter, about a religious freshman college student who debates with his professor on the existence of God, has made $48m (£28.5m) over the last five weeks, even though it is playing in far fewer venues than the blockbuster fare at the top of the chart.

"There's a core audience and they're very interested in seeing films with a faith-based centre," said Rory Bruer, president of Sony Pictures Entertainment, whose TriStar Pictures unit distributed Heaven is for Real.

"The one main ingredient most have is that they are somewhat inspirational in nature," he added. "People feel like they get something out of it."

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