“Race to Witch Mountain” opened at number one with $25 million this weekend, according to estimates by Nielsen EDI, the studio tracking firm.

The PG-rated remake of the Disney family film is about a UFO expert who enlists the help of a cabbie to protect two siblings with paranormal powers from an organization that wants to use the kids for their evil plans.

The superhero cult flick “Watchmen” took second place for ticket buyers this weekend, earning $18.1 million in its second week out, bringing its total to $86 million. Horror remake “The Last House on the Left” pegged number three with $14.7 million, while Liam Neeson’s “Taken” hit fourth place with $6.65 million, making its total gross $127 million over seven weeks.

Tyler Perry’s “Madea Goes to Jail” hung onto its spot in the top five club with a $5.13 million rake, while “Slumdog Millionaire”, enjoying its Oscar bounce, sailed along to number six with $5.03 million and a total of $133 million to date. It is now one of the ten highest-grossing best-picture winners.

TFL and ATBS for ticketing professionals

Final figures are due on Monday.

Box Office Grosses
Week Ending March 15, 2009

Rank Title Weekend Total Gross
1 Race to Witch Mountain (2009) $25M $25M
2 Watchmen (2009) $18.1M $86M
3 The Last House on the Left (2009) $14.7M $14.7M
4 Taken (2008/I) $6.65M $127M
5 Madea Goes to Jail (2009) $5.13M $83.2M
6 Slumdog Millionaire (2008) $5.03M $133M
7 Paul Blart: Mall Cop (2009) $3.1M $138M
8 He’s Just Not That Into You (2009) $2.9M $89M
9 Coraline (2009) $2.65M $69.1M
10 Miss March (2009) $2.35M $2.35M