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Batman vs Superman defies critics for record-breaking opener

"Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice" has earned 170 million dollars in domestic ticket sales over three days. The superhero epic starring Ben Affleck also marked the first appearance of Wonder Woman on the big screen.

Shrugging off the scathing reports from critics, Warner Bros. superhero clash "Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice," has blasted past rivals to enter the top ten opening weekends of all time in terms of box office returns.

Over the Easter holiday, the Dark Knight and the Man of Steel raked in a staggering $170.1 million (152 million euros) in North America to put it in sixth place as final figures were released.

Globally, the DC Comics juggernaut garnered a further $254 million in ticket sales. Starring Academy Award-winner Ben Affleck as Bruce Wayne and Henry Cavill as Clark Kent, the film is a foray by DC Comics to emulate its biggest rival Marvel's success with crossover films such as The Avengers.

Critics were noticeably less kind to this adaptation, however, than they have been to the two Avengers films. Anthony Lane of the New Yorker called it an "irradiated monster," and Joe Morgenstern of the Wall Street Journal complained that it was "underdeveloped, overlong and stupendously dispiriting."

The film was notable for its first appearance of Wonder Woman in a film, 70 years after her character was first introduced in comic books. Played by Gal Gadot, the lasso-toting Amazonian princess may have not been enough to sway critics, but theatergoers appeared wholly undeterred by the less-than-stellar reports.

Wonder Woman in the movie Batman v Superman

Wonder Woman, or Diana Prince, has been in TV adaptions but never in a movie

The weekend's top three were rounded out by family-friendly animated feature Zootopia, with 23 million in North American sales, and comedy sequel My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 with 18 million. With its smashing success, Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice came in behind another comic franchise entry, Iron Man 3, for all-time opening results. The top spot still belongs to

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

, which made an incredible $248 million when it opened in December.

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