If anybody had a reason to doubt whether Tyler Perry has become one of the most bankable brands in all of movies, be skeptical no longer.
The domestic dramedy maestro's latest release, Tyler Perry's "Madea Goes to Jail," ran away with a big victory on the typically slow Academy Awards weekend, grossing a hefty $41.1 million, according to early estimates from Media by Numbers.
That opening sum is the biggest of all time for a Tyler Perry film, besting the $30 million debut of 2006's "Madea's Family Reunion." Too, it's the top bow in the history of indie studio Lionsgate, improving upon all the Tyler Perry and "Saw" flicks that came before it. The movie's per-theater average of $20,236 ranks in the top 40 for all wide openers ever.
And, no surprise, "Madea Goes to Jail" achieved all this success with a solid A CinemaScore grade from a crowd that included mostly older women. Watch Tyler Perry talk about his success »
Second place went to "Taken," which added another $11.4 million to its four-week tally, bringing said total to $95.2 million. Fellow strong holdover "Coraline" (No. 3) was next with $11 million.
"He's Just Not That Into You" (No. 4) declined a sharp 56 percent to bank $8.5 million on its third weekend. And Best Picture favorite "Slumdog Millionaire" rounded out the top five with $8.1 million -- a sum that brings its domestic total to $98 million.