After suffering a couple of box-office disappointments,
The 50-year-old's science fiction flick
The film's opening is a win for Cruise, especially considering the movie did not benefit from 3-D ticket surcharges and was not part of a franchise. The actor is also coming off a tough year at the box office, as his two 2012 releases proved to be lackluster.
"An original concept did this well? It's like we're in church and bells are going off," joked Nikki Rocco, Universal's president of domestic distribution. "Tom Cruise is charismatic and a great actor, and people recognize that."
If "Oblivion" is to be a strong domestic performer, it will have to generate strong word of mouth -- a potential challenge, given that opening-weekend audiences assigned the film an average grade of B-, according to market research firm CinemaScore.
The movie attracted mostly older men, as 74% of the crowd were over the age of 25 and 57% were men. In exit polls, moviegoers listed Cruise as their primary reason for attending "Oblivion," followed by the sci-fi genre, according to Universal.
Rocco insisted that she wasn’t worried about the CinemaScore hurting grosses in the coming weeks, saying that the grade came in on Friday evening “when there was a lot of diversion” from the capture of a Boston marathon
The film, which the studio said it co-financed with Elliot Inc. for $120 million, was already playing in most international countries last weekend. The movie collected an additional $33.7 million abroad this weekend from 60 foreign markets, raising its total abroad to $112 million.
Like last weekend, the movie again did best in Russia, where it sold $3.5 million worth of tickets. The picture has yet to open in China and Japan.
Meanwhile, the weekend's runner-up position went to the