Cave-dwelling 'Croods' settle at top of US movie box office

LOS ANGELES, March 24 Sun Mar 24, 2013 12:09pm EDT

LOS ANGELES, March 24 (Reuters) - Animated movie "The Croods," the story of a prehistoric family seeking a new home, debuted at the top of box office charts with $44.7 million in weekend ticket sales in the United States and Canada.

The 3D family film from "Shrek" and "Madagascar" creator Dreamworks Animation dethroned two-time champion "Oz the Great and Powerful," which slipped to third place. The Walt Disney Co prequel to "The Wizard of Oz" earned $22 million during its third weekend, according to studio estimates released on Sunday.

In between the two family films, thriller "Olympus Has Fallen" about a White House under terrorist attack took in $30.5 million from Friday through Sunday.

"The Croods" was produced by Dreamworks Animation and distributed by 20th Century Fox, a unit of News Corp. "Olympus Has Fallen" was released by privately held FilmDistrict.