Robin Hood took the lead at the worldwide box office in its first weekend of release, but the costly Russell Crowe saga failed to replace Iron Man 2 as the top choice in North America, according to studio estimates issued on Sunday.
Crowe's fifth collaboration with director Ridley Scott earned $111.1 million from 57 markets, led by a relatively modest $37.1 million in the United States and Canada, said Universal Pictures.
The North American tally fell below forecasts of an opening in the $40 million to $45 million range. Still, it is in the same range as the totals of his last two under-performers, Body of Lies ($37 million) and State of Play ($39 million).
Iron Man 2 retained its crown in North America after earning $53 million in its second weekend, said Paramount Pictures, which is distributing the film for Walt Disney Co's Marvel Studios. The superhero sequel, starring Robert Downey Jr., pulled in $84 million worldwide, taking its total to $457 million.
Robin Hood, which cost at least $155 million to make, made its world premiere at the opening selection at the Cannes Film Festival on Wednesday.
The picture dispenses with much of the Robin Hood mythology -- including his reputation as the man who stole from the rich and gave to the poor -- and transforms the hero into a war veteran swept up in political intrigue. Cate Blanchett co-stars as Maid Marion. Critics were largely unimpressed.
Universal is a unit of General Electric Co. Paramount Pictures is a unit of Viacom Inc.