By Joshua Rich
Updated January 10, 2009 at 12:00 PM EST

Clint Eastwood’s latest action-drama, Gran Torino, cruised into first place as the weekend box office race got underway, grossing $9.6 mil on Friday. The movie had been a hit in limited release, banking more than $10 mil since its premiere last month; this is its first weekend playing wide. Close behind were two newcomers — the horror flick The Unborn and the Anne Hathaway-Kate Hudson comedy, Bride Wars, each coming in around $8 mil on Friday. The weekend’s other major release, Not Easily Broken, had a solid first-day take of $2 mil. Friday’s rankings are below, and please check back on Sunday for a full weekend wrap in our Box Office Report.

1. Gran Torino — $9.6 mil
2. The Unborn — $8.2 mil
3. Bride Wars — $8.1 mil
4. Marley & Me — $3.2 mil
5. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button — $2.9 mil

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