LOS ANGELES-Space disaster movie ‘Gravity’ continued its meteoric path at the top of North America’s box office in its second weekend, earning $44.3 million, industry estimates showed Sunday.

The film, directed by Oscar-nominated Alfonso Cuaron and starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney - both Oscar winners - as astronauts adrift in space after a devastating accident, has already been winning rave reviews and Oscars buzz.

The film’s debut earnings of $55.8 million were the biggest ever for a film released in October, traditionally a slow month for the box office, according to the IMDb movie industry website.

It remained leaps and bounds ahead of the second place finisher, new release “Captain Phillips.” The film, based on a true story, stars Tom Hanks as a cargo ship captain captured by Somali pirates, earned $26 million, according to industry tracker Exhibitor Relations. Dropping to third place in its third week, animated sequel “Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs 2” took in $14.2 million. Another new release opened in the fourth slot: action flick “Machete Kills,” starring Danny Trejo as a US government recruit battling through Mexico to stop a plot to launch a weapon into space. It took in $3.8m in ticket sales.

Not far behind in fifth place was crime drama “Runner Runner,” starring Justin Timberlake as a Princeton grad student who travels to Costa Rica to confront a tycoon, played by Ben Affleck, he believes has taken him for a ride on an online poker site.