Kevin Hart isn't hosting the Oscars, but he's got a number one movie. "The Upside," starring Hart and Bryan Cranston, surpassed expectations to open with $19.6 million in ticket sales, according to studio estimates Sunday.

"The Upside" pushed "Aquaman" to second after the aquatic superhero's three-week reign atop the North American box office. Warner Bros.' "Aquaman" still passed $1 billion worldwide over the weekend.

"The Upside" opened on the heels of several weeks of Oscar drama surrounding Hart. The comedian last month withdrew from hosting the Academy Awards, just days after being named emcee, when he initially refused to apologize for years-old homophobic tweets.

Early January is often a dumping ground in movie theaters, and the weekend featured a number of duds. Keanu Reeves' sci-fi thriller "Replicas" debuted with just $2.5 million for Entertainment Studios. Opening more solidly, in third place, was "A Dog's Way Home" with $11.3 million.

The two biggest winners at last Sunday's Golden Globe Awards — "Bohemian Rhapsody" and "Green Book" — both saw a bump.

A couple of awards contenders also expanded nationwide. Focus Features' Ruth Bader Ginsburg tale "On the Basis of Sex" grossed $6.2 million on its third weekend. Barry Jenkins' James Baldwin adaptation "If Beale Street Could Talk" took in $2.3 million. Next week will see the release of M. Night Shyamalan's "Glass."

Estimated weekend sales:

1. "The Upside," $19.6 million

2. "Aquaman," $17.3 million

3. "A Dog's Way Home," $11.3 million.

4. "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse," $9 million.

5. "Escape Room," $8.9 million.

6. "Mary Poppins Returns," $7.2 million.

7. "Bumblebee," $6.8 million.

8. "On the Basis of Sex," $6.2 million.

9. "The Mule," $5.5 million

10. "Vice," $3.3 million

Associated Press