LOS ANGELES -- A wisecracking demon from hell took down the Rock for the weekend's box-office title.
"Hellboy," starring Ron Perlman as the comic-book superhero with red skin, horns, and a tail, debuted as the top flick with $23.5 million, according to studio estimates yesterday.
The Rock's "Walking Tall," a remake of the 1973 vigilante-justice tale, opened in second place with $15.3 million.
The previous weekend's top movie, "Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed," fell to No. 3 with $15.1 million, lifting its 10-day total to $50 million.
The weekend's other new wide releases followed: Disney's animated cow tale "Home on the Range" was at No. 4 with $14 million and Julia Stiles's love story "The Prince and Me" debuted at No. 5 with $10 million.
Having five movies pull in $10 million or more is a rarity for early April, typically a slower time at theaters. The range of movies had something for all audiences, from G-rated family adventures to teen romance to violent shoot-'em-ups.
"This weekend was like the classic moviegoers' weekend. You had all these different genres represented," said Paul Dergarabedian, president of box-office tracker Exhibitor Relations.
The overall box office rose for the sixth-straight weekend. The top 12 movies took in $114.5 million, up 40 percent from the same weekend last year.
That string of up weekends began with the blockbuster debut of Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ, which continued to hold strongly. "The Passion" came in sixth with $9.9 million, raising its total to $330.1 million.