Cruise is back in driver's seat at the box office

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LOS ANGELES — After suffering a couple of box-office disappointments, Tom Cruise posted his first No. 1 film opening in seven years at the multiplex this past weekend.

The 50-year-old actor’s science-fiction flick “Oblivion” was the only new movie to hit theaters nationwide this past weekend and easily claimed the top spot, debuting with a respectable $38.2 million, according to an estimate from distributor Universal Pictures.

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. He hasn’t had a film debut at No. 1 since 2006’s “Mission: Impossible III.”

Meanwhile, the weekend’s runner-up position went to the Jackie Robinson biopic “42,” which saw its A-plus CinemaScore pay off as ticket sales dropped just 34 percent to $18 million. After 10 days in theaters, the $40 million baseball drama has already collected $54.1 million and should end up being a hit for distributor Warner Bros.

Meanwhile, the weekend’s runner-up position went to the Jackie Robinson biopic “42,” which saw its A-plus CinemaScore pay off as ticket sales dropped just 34 percent to $18 million. After 10 days in theaters, the $40 million baseball drama has already collected $54.1 million and should end up being a hit for distributor Warner Bros.

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