Critics don’t like ‘‘Taken 2,’’ but Liam Neeson’s action sequel has proved twice the hit among fans as the original movie was. ‘‘Taken 2’’ led the box office with $50 million domestically over opening weekend, according to studio estimates Sunday. That’s double the haul for Neeson’s ‘‘Taken,’’ which took in $24.7 million in its US debut in early 2009. The previous weekend’s No. 1 movie at the US box office, Adam Sandler’s animated hit, ‘‘Hotel Transylvania,’’ dropped to second place with $26.3 million. The Sony release raised its domestic total to $76 million, and it has taken in $29.3 million overseas for a worldwide haul of $105.3 million. Expanding into nationwide release after a limited debut a week earlier, Universal’s music tale ‘‘Pitch Perfect’’ moved up to third place with $14.7 million. The movie stars Anna Kendrick as a college freshman spicing things up for her a cappella singing squad. Sony’s sci-fi thriller ‘‘Looper,’’ starring Bruce Willis and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, fell from second place to fourth with $12.2 million, lifting its domestic haul to $40.3 million. Tim Burton’s animated monster tale ‘‘Frankenweenie’’ had a slow start, taking in $11.5 million to round out the top five. The Disney release is an update of Burton’s 1984 live-action short film, about a boy who brings his dead dog back to life. (AP)
McDonald, Swenson wed
Audra McDonald and Will Swenson have tied the knot, cementing a relationship between two of Broadway’s best-looking and talented stars. According to a publicist for the bride, the couple married Saturday at their home in Croton-on-Hudson in New York. The bride’s wedding dress was designed by Esosa. McDonald is mother to daughter Zoe Madeline, 11, and Swenson is father to two sons, Bridger, 11, and Sawyer, 8. The couple look forward to their new life together as husband, wife, and ‘‘wee posse of three,’’ according to a statement. McDonald recently won a record-tying fifth Tony Award in a revival of ‘‘Porgy and Bess’’ and Swenson was Tick in the ‘‘Priscilla Queen of the Desert.’’ The couple became engaged while on vacation in Puerto Rico last winter. (AP)
“That’s something I learned from both my stepdad and my grandfather — that there is a thing called chivalry and it doesn’t have to die with the birth of the Internet.” — Justin Timberlake, to the Hollywood Foreign Press about courting his fiancee Jessica Biel by phone.