Story by the Associated Press; curated by Dave Urbanski

LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Lone Survivor” was victorious at the weekend box office.

The Navy SEAL drama starring Mark Wahlberg, Taylor Kitsch and Emile Hirsch earned $38.5 million in its first weekend in wide release, according to studio estimates Sunday. The Universal film directed by Peter Berg is based on Marcus Luttrell’s memoir about a Navy SEAL team on a mission in Afghanistan.

The opening exceeded expectations and marked the second biggest January opening after the $40.1 million debut of 2008′s “Cloverfield.”

A Texas movie theater cancelled showings of several box office hits to accommodate massive demand for “Lone Survivor” Saturday, such was the explosive popularity of the movie.

“Lone Survivor” also beat Disney’s “Frozen,” which came in at No. 2, earning $15 million in its eighth weekend, and Paramount’s controversial “The Wolf of Wall Street” (No. 3) earning $9 million in its third weekend.

Here’s Luttrell discussing his experiences behind the movie and book via KDAF-TV in Dallas:

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