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Austin Powers' third installment grossed more in its opening weekend than the original earned during its entire North American run in 1997.

YEAH, BABY!!!

New Austin Powers Caper Simply Shagadelic With $71 Million at Box Office
The new Austin Powers saga had a smashing bow, raking in $71.5 million to set an opening weekend record for a comedy.

With such numbers, Austin Powers in Goldmember had no problem kicking the Tom Hanks-starrer Road to Perdition into second place at the box office.

Goldmember, the third tale of the British superspy, had the fifth-best opening ever for any movie. Spider-Man still tops the list with its $114.8 million May opening.

Austin Powers also earned $3.5 million during Thursday night previews, pushing the four-day total to $75 million. The previous opening record for a comedy was set last year by New Line's Rush Hour II, which took in $67.4 million.

The only other major new movie this weekend was Disney's The Country Bears, which debuted in sixth place with $5.2 million.

The Austin Powers franchise actually seemed to gain strength. The third installment grossed more in its opening weekend than the original earned during its entire North American run in 1997.

The overall box office was down, however. The top 12 movies grossed $133.2 million from Friday through Sunday, down 7.1% from the same weekend last year.

Perdition continued to do well despite its drop to No. 2, grossing $11 million for a three-week total of $65.6 million. Stuart Little 2 came in third with $10,7 million, while Men In Black II was fourth with $8.7 million. K-19: The Widowmaker rounded out the top five with $7.3 million.

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