Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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May 20, 2013

'Trek' does $70.6M but falls short of studio hopes

LOS ANGELES (AP) — "Star Trek: Into Darkness" has warped its way to a $70.6 million domestic launch from Friday to Sunday, though it's not setting any light-speed records with a debut that's lower than the studio's expectations.

The latest voyage of the starship Enterprise fell short of its predecessor, 2009's "Star Trek," which opened with $75.2 million.

Since premiering Wednesday in huge-screen IMAX theaters and expanding Thursday to general cinemas, "Into Darkness" has pulled in $84.1 million, well below distributor Paramount's initial forecast of $100 million. The film added $40 million overseas, pushing its total to $80.5 million since it began rolling out internationally a week earlier.

The "Star Trek" sequel bumped "Iron Man 3" down to second place after two weekends on top. Robert Downey Jr.'s superhero saga took in $35.2 million domestically to lift its receipts to $337.1 million. Overseas, "Iron Man 3" added $40.2 million, raising its international total to $736.2 million and its worldwide tally to nearly $1.1 billion.

While "Iron Man 3" and "Into Darkness" did well overseas, they were outmatched by the debut of Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby," which followed its domestic debut a week earlier with a wide rollout internationally. "Gatsby" pulled in $42.1 million overseas, coming in a bit ahead of both "Iron Man 3" and "Into Darkness."

Domestically, "Gatsby" held up well at No. 3 with $23.4 million, lifting its total to $90.2 million.

In today's Hollywood of bigger, better sequels, follow-up films often outdo the box office of their predecessors, as each "Iron Man" sequel has done. While "Into Darkness" earned good reviews and is getting strong word-of-mouth from fans, the film did not quite measure up to the opening weekend of director J.J. Abrams' "Star Trek" reboot from four years ago, at least domestically.

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