'Iron Man' beats strong 'Gatsby' in movie box office showdown

Sun May 12, 2013 12:10pm EDT

May 12 (Reuters) - Tony Stark's superpowers lifted blockbuster "Iron Man 3" back to the top of movie charts in the United States and Canada, beating out a strong debut over the weekend for lavish Jazz Age drama "The Great Gatsby."

Coming off a gigantic opening a week earlier, "Iron Man 3" commanded $72.5 million in ticket sales from Friday through Sunday in its second weekend. "Gatsby," starring Leonardo DiCaprio as millionaire Jay Gatsby in the classic F. Scott Fitzgerald tale, earned a strong $51.1 million, according to studio estimates.

"Iron Man 3" stars Robert Downey Jr. as Stark, a billionaire businessman with a superhero alter ego. The movie from Walt Disney Co's Marvel Studios opened last weekend with $174.1 million for the second-biggest movie opening of all time.

In distant third place, dark action comedy "Pain & Gain" grossed $5 million. The film stars Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne Johnson as bodybuilders-turned-criminals who kidnap a wealthy deli owner.

Warner Bros., a unit of Time Warner Inc, distributed "The Great Gatsby." "Pain & Gain" was released by Paramount Pictures, a unit of Viacom Inc.