Mark Wahlberg and Will Ferrell in 'The Other Guys'
The dream is over for 'Inception,' which got a rude awakening from Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg after spending three weeks on top of the box office chart. Leonardo DiCaprio's sci-fi thriller was finally dethroned by 'The Other Guys,' debuting at No. 1 with a strong $35.6 million, according to studio estimates.

'Inception' settled for second place with a still impressive $18.6 million, down just a third from last week. It beat the weekend's other new wide release, 'Step Up 3D,' which opened at No. 3 with a so-so $15.5 million.

Ferrell and Wahlberg's cop comedy opened in line with most predictions. Playing on 3,651 screens, it enjoyed the best per-screen average of the weekend ($9,751), benefiting from generally positive reviews, decent word of mouth, and a relative lack of comedy competition, save from week-old 'Dinner for Schmucks.' The film marks a healthy comeback for Ferrell after 2009's dismal flop 'Land of the Lost.'
Mark Wahlberg and Will Ferrell in 'The Other Guys'
The dream is over for 'Inception,' which got a rude awakening from Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg after spending three weeks on top of the box office chart. Leonardo DiCaprio's sci-fi thriller was finally dethroned by 'The Other Guys,' debuting at No. 1 with a strong $35.6 million, according to studio estimates.

'Inception' settled for second place with a still impressive $18.6 million, down just a third from last week. It beat the weekend's other new wide release, 'Step Up 3-D,' which opened at No. 3 with a so-so $15.5 million.

Ferrell and Wahlberg's cop comedy opened in line with most predictions. Playing on 3,651 screens, it enjoyed the best per-screen average of the weekend ($9,751), benefiting from generally positive reviews, decent word of mouth, and a relative lack of comedy competition, save from week-old 'Dinner for Schmucks.' The film marks a healthy comeback for Ferrell after 2009's dismal flop 'Land of the Lost.'

'Step Up 3D'Opening on 2,435 screens, 'Step Up 3-D' had the second best per-screen average ($6,379) among wide-screen releases. Still, the dance flick, which competed for some of the same youthful audience as 'The Other Guys,' had been expected to open around $18 to $19 million. In fact, it didn't even enjoy as big an opening weekend as 2006's 'Step Up' ($20.7 million) or 2008's 'Step Up 2 the Streets' ($18.9 million), and neither of those movies sold tickets with 3-D surcharges.

Coming in fourth was 'Salt,' with an estimated $11.1 million and a three-week total of just under $92 million. 'Schmucks' was fifth with an estimated $10.5 million, down 55 percent from last week's debut.

Also noteworthy on this week's chart was 'The Kids Are All Right,' which is becoming one of the biggest indie breakout hits of the year. The lesbian-moms-and-sperm-donor-dad dramedy has been expanding to more theaters over the past five weeks, and while it's still playing on fewer than 1,000 screens, it earned an estimated $2.6 million this weekend, good for tenth place and a total to date of $14 million.

The full top 10:
1. 'The Other Guys,' $35.6 million (3,651 screens), new release
2. 'Inception,' $18.6 million (3,418 screens), $227.7 million total
3. 'Step Up 3-D,' $15.5 million (2,435), new release
4. 'Salt,' $11.1 million (3,317), $92.0 million
5. 'Dinner for Schmucks,' $10.5 million (3,004), $46.7 million
6. 'Despicable Me,' $9.4 million (3,413), $209.4 million
7. 'Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore,' $6.9 million (3,705), $26.4 million
8. 'Charlie St. Cloud,' $4.7 million (2,725), $23.5 million
9. 'Toy Story 3,' $3.0 million (1,714), $396.3 million
10. 'The Kids Are All Right,' $2.6 million (994), $14.0 million

Top 10 movies of summer 2010:
1. 'Toy Story 3,' $396.3 million
2. 'Iron Man 2,' $311.8 million
3. 'The Twilight Saga: Eclipse,' $293.1 million
4. 'Shrek Forever After,' $236.6 million
5. 'Inception,' $227.7 million
6. 'Despicable Me,' $209.4 million
7. 'The Karate Kid,' $173.2 million
8. 'Grown Ups,' $155.7 million
9. 'The Last Airbender,' $128.9 million
10. 'Robin Hood,' $105.3 million

•Follow Gary Susman on Twitter @garysusman.