Russell Crowe’s Noah has opened at the top of the US box office, taking $44 million over the weekend.
The epic biblical tale of Noah’s ark, directed by Black Swan’s Darren Aronofsky, also stars Jennifer Connolly and Emma Watson.
The movie follows in the wake of other recent religious films, including God’s Not Dead and Son of God.
Other faith-based movies out this year include Exodus and Heaven is Real.
Second on the box office chart was teen science fiction thriller, Divergent, starring Shailene Woodley and Kate Winslet, which took $26.6 million in its second week of release.
Muppets Most Wanted, also in its second week, took third spot with $11.4 million.
Mr. Peabody and Sherman and God’s Not Dead – about a Christian college student whose faith is challenged by his atheist philosophy professor – rounded out the top five.
The second-highest new entry was Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Sabotage, which could only manage takings of $5.3 million.
Friday sees the release of Captain America: The Winter Soldier in the US and Canada.
The movie more than doubled Noah‘s takings at the international box office this weekend – Captain America took $75.2 million, while Noah picked up $33.6 million.
North American box office Top 5:
1. Noah – $44 million
2. Divergent – $26.5 million
3. Muppets Most Wanted – $11.4 million
4. Mr. Peabody and Sherman – $9.5 million
5. God’s Not Dead – $9 million
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