LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Acclaimed Iran hostage drama "Argo" took home its first box office win over the weekend, grabbing $12.4 million in ticket sales at U.S. and Canadian theaters.
"Argo," directed by and starring Ben Affleck, came in ahead of new sci-fi drama "Cloud Atlas," which was also edged out by Halloween-themed animated film "Hotel Transylvania."
"Cloud Atlas," starring Tom Hanks and Halle Berry, earned $9.4 million from Friday through Sunday, while "Hotel Transylvania" earned $9.5 million, according to studio estimates.
"Argo" moved up to the top spot after two weeks in second place, helped by rave reviews from critics and audiences who praised the story about a mission to rescue U.S. government employees from Iran in 1979.
"Hotel Transylvania" features voice work by Adam Sandler and Selena Gomez, and set a record for a September film opening in the United States and Canada when it opened on September 28, and has performed solidly since its release.
In the family comedy, Frankenstein, the Invisible Man and other monsters gather for a party at a high-end resort operated by Dracula. Their celebration is disrupted when a boy discovers the hotel and falls in love with Dracula's daughter but must deal with her overprotective father.
"Cloud Atlas" has divided critics with six interweaving stories that span from the 1840s to the future.
Warner Bros., a unit of Time Warner Inc, released "Argo" and "Cloud Atlas." Sony Corp's movie studio released "Hotel Transylvania."
(Reporting by Lisa Richwine and Andrea Burzynski; Editing by Will Dunham)