The Girl on the Train steams to top of US box of­fice

Malta Independent - - ENTERTAINMENT -

The Girl on the Train has steamed ahead of its ri­vals to top the US box of­fice on its open­ing week­end.

The thriller, star­ring Emily Blunt as an al­co­holic try­ing to solve the mys­tery of a miss­ing per­son, took $24.7m - with 68% of the au­di­ence made up of women.

Last week‘s num­ber one, Miss Pere­grine’s Home for Pe­cu­liar Chil­dren, made $15m to take se­cond place.

New en­try The Birth of a Na­tion only made $7.1m.

The slave re­bel­lion drama is writ­ten and di­rected by Nate Parker, who has faced re­cent me­dia scru­tiny over a his­toric rape trial and also stars in the film. It failed to make the top five in the North Amer­i­can box of­fice.

On its open­ing night on Thurs­day, pro­test­ers held a silent vigil out­side a Los An­ge­les cin­ema for vic­tims of rape and sex­ual as­sault.

Re­cent me­dia at­ten­tion has been fo­cused on Parker’s ac­quit­tal for rape in 1999 and his ac­cuser’s sub­se­quent sui­cide.

Paul Der­garabe­dian, se­nior me­dia an­a­lyst for com Score, said he was not sure how the con­tro­versy af­fected the film’s per­for­mance.

“It’s hard to know, but con­sid­er­ing the ini­tial prom­ise of the movie and all the pos­i­tive talk about the film and its Os­car prospects, you would have fig­ured that it would do more busi­ness,” he said.

The Girl on the Train, based on the Paula Hawkins novel, has had poor re­views - but Blunt’s per­for­mance as cen­tral char­ac­ter Rachel, who ob­serves the lives of oth­ers on her daily com­mute to Man­hat­tan, has been praised.

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