An uninspiring start to 2011 at the North American box office saw Universal lead the way as Little Fockers clung on to its holiday season crown courtesy of an estimated $26.3m haul.

The result propels the comedy to $103.2m after two weekends despite poor reviews and once again illustrates the disconnect between critics and audiences in the mainstream entertainment arena.

Box office analysts are predicting combined revenues for 2010 will amount to approximately $10.5bn when final results are announced on Monday [Jan 3], just behind the $10.6bn record set in 2009.

There were no significant changes to the running order over a weekend that brought no new releases as Hollywood’s best and brightest amassed $158m and dropped 28% compared to the same weekend last year, when Avatar reigned supreme on $89m in its third weekend.

Paramount’s True Grit is the surprise package here. Unusually for a Western, the film is holding extremely well at the box office and stayed second on $24.5m for $86.8m in its second weekend.

Disney’s Tron: Legacy in third place stands at $130.9m and more than $240m worldwide, while Fox’s Voyage Of The Dawn Treader in fifth is yet to cross $100m after four weekends in release. It is performing well overseas and stands at a little over $210m.

Fox is also behind another disappointing North American effort, Gulliver’s Travels, which may be the weekend’s top international release but currently languishes in eighth place after two weekends in the domestic charts on $27.2m

The awards season contenders are coming into their own now and the current crop including True Grit has yielded strong results thus far. This weekend The Weinstein Company released Derek Cianfrance’s sombre romance Blue Valentine starring Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams in four theatres and reported an excellent $180,000 three-day gross for a per-theatre average of $45,000. The total since the December 29 release date stands at $278,000.

Sony Pictures Classics opened Mike Leigh’s drama Another Year in six theatres on $120,000, averaging a commendable $20,000.

Fox Searchlight/Cross Creek Pictures’ Black Swan in ninth place stands at a terrific $47.4m after five weekends, while Relativity Media’s The Fighter in seventh place is performing solidly through Paramount and has grossed $46.4m after four.

The King’s Speech, released through The Weinstein Company in North America, plays in 700 theatres and ranks tenth. It has taken $22.8m after six weekends. Fox Searchlight’s 127 Hours has taken a little over $10.4m after nine weekends and plays in a far more limited 103 theatres.

Next weekend’s wide release is Relativity Media’s thriller Season Of The Witch starring Nicolas Cage.

Estimated Top 10 North America Dec 31-Jan 2, 2010

Film (Dist) / Est wkd gross / Est total to date

1 (1) Little Fockers (Universal) PPI $26.3m $103.2m

2 (2) True Grit (2010) (Paramount) PPI $24.5m $86.8m

3 (3) Tron: Legacy (Buena Vista) WDSMPI $18.3m $130.9m

4 (5) Yogi Bear (Warner Bros) WBPI $13m $66.1m

5 (4) The Chronicles Of Narnia: The Voyage Of The Dawn Treader (Fox) Fox Int’l $10.5m $87.1m

6 (7) Tangled (Buena Vista) WDSMPI $10m $168m

7 (6) The Fighter (Paramount) TWC/Relativity Media $10m $46.4m

8 (8) Gulliver’s Travels (Fox) Fox Int’l $9.1m $27.2m

9 (9) Black Swan (Fox Searchlight) Fox Int’l $8.5m $47.4m

10 (11) The King’s Speech (TWC) FilmNation $7.6m $22.8m