(Reuters) - The fifth movie in the Bruce Willis "Die Hard" franchise scored the biggest box office action over a U.S. holiday weekend, beating out love story "Safe Haven", which came in third.
"A Good Day to Die Hard," with Willis returning as the tenacious wise-cracking hero John McClane, pulled in $25 million at U.S. and Canadian theaters from Friday through Sunday, according to studio estimates.
The tally was expected to top $35 million through Monday, the Presidents' Day holiday in the United States.
"Die Hard" handily beat "Safe Haven," an adaptation of a Nicholas Sparks novel that was aimed at luring couples around Valentine's Day. The movie, starring Julianne Hough and Josh Duhamel, pulled in $21.4 million over three days. Both films opened on Thursday.
Last weekend's winner, Melissa McCarthy comedy "Identity Thief," took second place with $23.4 million.
"A Good Day to Die Hard" was released by 20th Century Fox, a unit of News Corp. Relativity Media distributed "Safe Haven." "Identity Thief" was released by Universal Pictures, a unit of Comcast Corp.
(Reporting By Lisa Richwine; Editing by Bill Trott)