By John Young
Updated December 11, 2010 at 07:33 PM EST
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Image Credit: Phil BrayAslan’s not going to like this. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader led the box office on Friday but got off to a rocky start with $8.2 million, according to early estimates. That puts Fox’s $140 million fantasy epic, the third film adapted from C.S. Lewis’ series of novels, on track for a $24 million opening weekend. By comparison, 2005’s The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe collected $65.6 million its first weekend, and 2008’s Prince Caspian debuted to $55 million. Dawn Treader was expected to continue the Narnia series’ box-office decline, but no one thought it’d tumble this much. It’s too early to declare what this soft debut means for the franchise’s future and its supposed next film, The Silver Chair. Also, considering its “A-” grade from CinemaScore audiences, Dawn Treader may hold up well during the rest of December. But this is clearly not the result Fox was hoping for when it secured distribution rights after Disney abandoned the series.

The Tourist, starring two attractive individuals named Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie, also performed below expectations, albeit to a lesser degree than Dawn Treader. The PG-13 romantic thriller snatched $6.1 million on Friday and is on pace for an $18 million weekend. The rest of the top five featured holdovers. Disney’s animated musical Tangled fell 34 percent for $3.4 million, while Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part 1 descended 50 percent for $2.4 million. In fifth place, the Denzel Washington action thriller Unstoppable showed off its box-office stamina yet again, skidding only 37 percent for $1.2 million and bringing its cumulative tally to $71.7 million.

In limited release, a pair of athletes dominated. The boxing drama The Fighter, starring Mark Wahlberg and Christian Bale, KO’d $100,000 from four theaters. And, in the other corner, the ballet thriller Black Swan expanded to 90 theaters and fluttered away with $1 million on Friday — enough for eighth place. Julie Taymor’s The Tempest, on the other hand, drew only $14,000 from five theaters. Check back here on Sunday for the complete box office report.

1. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader — $8.2 mil

2. The Tourist — $6.1 mil

3. Tangled — $3.4 mil

4. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part 1 — $2.4 mil

5. Unstoppable — $1.2 mil

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