The third installment of the hit Disney franchise “High School Musical” ran away with the movie box office for the weekend ending October 26, generating an impressive $42 million in its first week of release, according to industry estimates.

The franchise, which has made stars out of leads Zac Efron and Vanessa Anne Hudgens, has also spawned hit soundtracks, DVDs, concerts and ice skating shows. In second place for the weekend was “Saw V,” the fifth installment of the horror movie smash, which generated an estimated $30.5 million in its opening weekend. See table below.

In third place was the Mark Wahlberg sci-fi/action film “Max Payne,” which is based on the popular videogame. The movie, which generated $7.6 million over the weekend, is a previous number one.

Rounding out the top five were the animated “Beverly Hills Chihuahua,” another previous number one, which generated $6.9 million, and the Edward Norton-Colin Ferrell suspense thriller “Pride and Glory,” which raised an estimated $6.3 million in its first weekend.

TFL and ATBS for ticketing professionals

AddThis Story to Your Favorite Social Bookmarking Site!

Box Office Grosses
Week Ending October 26, 2008

Rank Title Weekend Total Gross
1 High School Musical 3: Senior Year (2008) $42M $42M
2 Saw V (2008) $30.5M $30.5M
3 Max Payne (2008) $7.6M $29.7M
4 Beverly Hills Chihuahua (2008) $6.92M $78.1M
5 Pride and Glory (2008) $6.33M $6.33M
6 The Secret Life of Bees (2008) $5.93M $19.2M
7 W. (2008) $5.33M $18.8M
8 Eagle Eye (2008) $5.14M $88M
9 Body of Lies (2008) $4.07M $30.9M
10 Quarantine (2008) $2.55M $28.8M