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“Life of Pi” was adapted from Yann Martel’s best-selling novel about an Indian youth adrift on a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger. Many fans considered the introspective novel impossible to film, but Mr. Lee has charmed audiences and critics with an inspiring survival story told through dazzling 3-D images.

The weekend’s other new wide release, a remake of the 1980s U.S.-invasion tale “Red Dawn,” opened at No. 7 with $14.6 million, raising its total to $22 million since debuting Wednesday.

“Red Dawn” sat on the shelf for three years while studio backer MGM went through bankruptcy, with distributor Film District eventually picking it up for domestic release. The movie’s cast includes Chris Hemsworth (“Thor”) and Josh Hutcherson (“The Hunger Games”) in a story of young guerrillas battling North Korean invaders.

The weekend’s overall strength came from a broad range of films that clicked with various audiences, from action and family fare to thoughtful drama.

“This is a marketplace that has something for everyone,” said Chris Aronson, head of distribution for 20th Century Fox. “You have something deeper like ‘Life of Pi,’ yet you have a very successful sequel in ‘Twilight’ at the same time. Adult bio-drama, if you will, in ‘Lincoln,’ and you have Bond. That’s the secret to a very successful and balanced marketplace.”