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'The Fault in Our Stars' beats out Tom Cruise to win the weekend box office

'The Fault in Our Stars' opened at #1 at the weekend box office, surpassing both Disney's 'Maleficent' and the new Tom Cruise blockbuster, 'Edge of Tomorrow.'
20th Century Fox

The Fault in Our Stars, a small-budget romantic movie based on the best-selling young adult novel by John Green, has beaten out the big budget Tom Cruise blockbuster Edge of Tomorrow to win the weekend box office.

The Fault in Our Stars has debuted at #1, after pulling in more than $48 million in its first weekend in theaters. It was followed in second-place by Disney's Maleficent, with Cruise's Edge of Tomorrow opening in a weak #3 spot with only $29.1 million.

The Fault in Our Stars is perhaps the most unique entry in the realm of successful YA book-to-movie adaptations, in that it is a standalone book, set firmly in the real world. Other blockbuster YA adaptations have all had some element of fantasy or science fiction. (See Harry Potter, Twilight, The Hunger Games, and Divergent.)

Green's novel has sold more than 10-million copies since it was first published in 2012, and 20th Century Fox wisely chose to tap into author Green's built-in network of rabid fans. The buzz for Fault has built steadily in the last several months, as promotion for the movie ramped up -- from the film's first trailer, to various social media marketing, to a limited nationwide tour of the cast, and finally to this weekend's debut at the box office.

Fox kicked off their $48 million weekend with a Thursday night event, called "The Night Before Our Stars," in which fans could catch a livestream with Green and stars Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort, and Nat Wolff, along with an early screening of the movie.

Box office analysts have noted that more than half of this weekend's box office sales came from Thursday and Friday night screenings of The Fault in Our Stars, with a notable drop-off. It will be interesting to see if Fault holds onto a top spot in the box office, or if it drifts lower in subsequent weeks, as it faces more competition from big budget summer blockbusters.

Either way, it is still a huge victory for YA movie adaptations, as well as for Green and all of the filmmakers involved.

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