Stargazing

Zac Efron new box-office champ

Zac Efron Miley Cyrus

this weekend.

Efron’s comedy “17 Again,” in which he plays the youthful version of a middle-aged man magically transformed to high school age, debuted as the top weekend movie with $24.1 million, according to studio estimates Sunday.

The No. 1 opening for the Warner Bros. movie solidifies the big-screen potential for Efron, who rose to fame with Disney’s “High School Musical” series.

Universal had the No. 2 movie with

Russell Crowe Ben Affleck

’s Washington thriller “State of Play,” which pulled in $14.1 million. Crowe plays a reporter investigating a series of deaths linked to an old college friend (Affleck) who’s now a rising star in Congress.

Cyrus’ “Hannah Montana: The Movie” slipped from first place to fourth with $12.7 million. That lifted the domestic total for Cyrus’ movie spinoff of her Disney Channel show to $56.1 million after 10 days in theaters.

“Hannah Montana” finished just behind DreamWorks Animation’s “Monsters vs. Aliens,” which took in $12.9 million to raise its domestic haul to $162.7 million. Estimates for “Hannah Montana” and “Monsters vs. Aliens” were close enough that the movies could switch rankings when final numbers are reported Monday.

Jason Statham

had a so-so opening for his action sequel “Crank: High Voltage,” which came in at No. 6 with $6.5 million, $4 million less than the first weekend for the 2006 original.

The Lionsgate sequel features Statham in a race to recover his heart, which has been stolen by organ thieves and replaced with a mechanical one.

Hollywood maintained a record box-office pace with just one weekend to go before the busy summer season arrives May 1 with “X-Men Origins: Wolverine,”

Hugh Jackman
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