Cooper's Limitless tops box office
Bradley Cooper's sci-fi thriller Limitless has opened at number one in the US box office list, taking 19 million dollars at the weekend, according to studio estimates.
The film from Relativity Media stars Bradley as a struggling writer who takes a magical pill that allows him to tap into his maximum brain potential. Suddenly he cleans up, making millions and wowing everyone he meets.
Robert De Niro co-stars as a financial guru who's fascinated by him, with Abbie Cornish as Cooper's skeptical girlfriend.
Limitless broke out of a crowded pack of new releases and holdovers to take the top spot.
Last week's number one, the alien invasion movie Battle: Los Angeles, fell to third place with 14.6 million dollars. The Sony Pictures release has now made an estimated 60.6 million in two weeks.
Coming in second was the animated Western Rango, featuring the voice of Johnny Depp as a chameleon who's stuck in the desert. The Paramount film made 15.3 million dollars for a three-week total of nearly 92.6 million.
It was a slow weekend, with the other new releases battling for the fourth and fifth spots. At number four was the Lionsgate thriller The Lincoln Lawyer, starring Matthew McConaughey as a sleazy defence attorney on a high-profile case. It made an estimated 13.4 million dollars.
In fifth place was Paul, with Seth Rogen providing the voice of a pot-smoking, wise-cracking alien who befriends a couple of British sci-fi geeks, played by Simon Pegg and Nick Frost (who also wrote the script). The Universal Pictures comedy made about 13.2 million dollars.
Kyle Davies, Relativity's president of theatrical distribution, said Bradley's appeal was a factor in the film's success. "He's coming into his own as a leading man. I think he appeals to men and women," he said.