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Marvel film Black Panther tops in weekend

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This image released by Disney and Marvel Studios' shows Chadwick Boseman in a scene from "Black Panther."

Black Panther has remained superheroic in its fourth weekend at the North American box office with $US41.1 million at 3942 locations, easily topping the opening weekend of fantasy-adventure A Wrinkle in Time with $US33.5 million at 3,980 sites.

What had been pegged as a close contest among Disney titles for first place turned into a relatively easy victory for Black Panther. The Marvel title declined only 38 per cent and generated the third-highest fourth weekend of all time, trailing only Avatar and Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

With $US562 million in 24 days, Black Panther is now the seventh-highest domestic grosser of all time. It's the first film since Star Wars: The Force Awakens to lead the North American box office for four straight weekends and it's grossed $US1.08 billion worldwide, 21st highest of all time.

A Wrinkle in Time opened in line with Disney's projections, which were slightly lower than the industry consensus. Critics were mostly unimpressed with a 42 per cent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and audiences gave Wrinkle a B CinemaScore. The $US100 million-plus budgeted film is depending on family audiences to support the film in the coming weeks to push it into profitability.

Based on Madeleine L'Engle's 1962 classic fantasy novel, A Wrinkle in Time stars Storm Reid, Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Zach Galifianakis, Chris Pine, Mindy Kaling and Gugu Mbatha-Raw. The film follows a young girl (Reid), her step-brother (Deric McCabe), and a friend (Levi Miller) as they embark on a journey that spans time and space in search of her missing father.

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