This film image released by Disney shows Ralph, left, voiced by John C. Reilly in a scene from "Wreck-It Ralph." (AP Photo/Disney)
Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters (in millions):
1. Wreck-It Ralph $49.1
2. Flight $25
3. (tie) Argo $10.2
3. Man with the Iron Fists $10.2
5. Taken 2 $6
6. Cloud Atlas $5.3
7. Hotel Transylvania $4.5
8. Paranormal Activity 4 $4.3
9. Here Comes the Boom $3.6
10. Silent Hill: Revelation $3.3
Updated: December 6, 2012 6:25AM
NEW YORK — The weekend box office was not only undeterred by aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, it was buoyed by it.
“Wreck-It Ralph” opened strongly with $49.1 million and “Flight,” starring Denzel Washington, soared to a $25 million debut. Both opened above expectations, capitalizing on East Coast audiences looking for distraction amid the storm recovery.
“Wreck-It Ralph,” a 3-D animated family film, is the largest box-office opening ever for Walt Disney Animation, which has produced countless cartoon classics (though doesn’t include Disney’s lucrative Pixar Animation).
Most theaters in the New York and New Jersey area were back open for business by the weekend. “The numbers show that audiences across the country, and particularly in the Northeast, wanted to go to the movies,” said Hollywood.com box office analyst Paul Dergarabedian, “and they did.”