‘Girl on the Train’ steamrolls Parker’s ‘Birth of a Nation’

FILE - In this file image, released by Universal Pictures, Emily Blunt appears in a scene from, "The Girl on the Train." Propelled by the popularity of Paula Hawkins’ best-seller, the adaptation of “The Girl on the Train” led North American theaters in ticket sales with $24.7 million, according to studio estimates Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016. (DreamWorks Pictures/Universal Pictures via AP, File)
FILE - In this file image, released by Universal Pictures, Emily Blunt appears in a scene from, "The Girl on the Train." Propelled by the popularity of Paula Hawkins’ best-seller, the adaptation of “The Girl on the Train” led North American theaters in ticket sales with $24.7 million, according to studio estimates Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016. (DreamWorks Pictures/Universal Pictures via AP, File)

NEW YORK (AP) – Propelled by the popularity of Paula Hawkins’ best-seller, the adaptation of “The Girl on the Train” led North American theaters in ticket sales with $24.7 million, according to studio estimates Sunday. Less successful was Nate Parker’s Nat Turner biopic “The Birth of a Nation,” which opened with a disappointing $7.1 million.

“The Girl on the Train,” a psychological thriller starring Emily Blunt, appealed significantly to female moviegoers, who made up 68 percent of the audience. The film is about an alcoholic suburbanite woman who becomes embroiled in a mysterious disappearance.

“The Birth of a Nation” fetched a record $17.5 million at its Sundance Film Festival premiere. But a resurfaced rape allegation against director and star Parker overshadowed the film’s release. Parker, who has maintained his innocence, was acquitted in 2001.

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