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'Captain America: Civil War' opens with sizzling $181.8m

The third 'Captain America' movie met lofty expectations with the fifth-best domestic opening weekend.

Chris Evans as Captain America

LOS ANGELES Marvel-Disneys Captain America: Civil War has opened the summer spectacularly with a dominant $181.8 million weekend at 4,266 US locations.

The third Captain America movie met lofty expectations with the fifth-best domestic opening weekend of all time, trailing only Star Wars: The Force Awakens at $248 million, Jurassic World at $208.8 million, Marvels The Avengers at $207.4 million and Avengers: Age of Ultron at $191.3 million.

The tentpole has already topped the final domestic total of 2011s Captain America: The First Avenger at $176.6 million and should eclipse 2014's Captain America: The Winter Soldier at $259 million by the end of next weekend.

The marketing for Civil War clearly resonated with moviegoers, as it promised an epic fight between Chris Evans Captain America and Robert Downey Jrs Iron Man, plus the introduction of Chadwick Bosemans Black Panther and Tom Hollands Spider-Man.

Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst with ComScore, said the performance of Captain America: Civil War underlines Marvel and Disneys adept management of a key franchise.

_Captain America: Civil War _certainly delivered the goods as the official kick off movie of the summer of 2016 was in perfect position to capitalise on its sheer quality, massive entertainment value, brand appeal and a high-profile release date, he noted.

Despite a cadre of sports-related options on the small screen, including the Kentucky Derby and Stanley Cup playoffs, Cap came on strong with a top 5 all-time opening weekend debut and expected long-term bankability at the multiplex.

Captain America is also keeping the US box office on track for a record performance in 2016 with $3.856 billion through this weekend, 7.8 percent ahead of the same point last year and an impressive 14.7 percent ahead of 2014. Disney has played a major role in that gain with The Jungle Book and Zootopia delivering blockbuster numbers plus Star Wars: The Force Awakens providing $285 million, or 30 percent of its $936 million total.

The fourth weekend of The Jungle Book finished second to Captain America with $21.9 million at 4,144 sites to lift its 24-day total to $285 million. Open Roads comedy Mothers Day came in a distant third with $9 million at 3,141, followed by Universals third frame of The Huntsman: Winters War with $3.6 million at 2,901.

With its apt title, Mothers Day saw an impressive 7 percent rise in business during the Mothers Day weekend following a so-so opening frame. The ensemble movie, starring Jennifer Aniston, Julia Roberts and Kate Hudson, has taken in $20.7 million in its first ten days.

The tenth weekend of Zootopia was edged out for fifth by New Lines second session of Keanu, which fell more than 67 percent to about $3.1 million. Zootopia followed with $2.7 million at 2,077 locations, bringing its 66-day total to $327.6 million.

As a result, Zootopia has eclipsed Warner Bros Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice by $300,000 as the years second-biggest domestic grosser after Foxs Deadpool at $362.2 million.