The psychological thriller “Glass,” from Universal Pictures and director M. Night Shyamalan, opened as the top film of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend in the U.S., collecting an estimated $40.6 million in North American theaters in the first three days, Comscore Inc. said.

The picture, featuring Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis and James McAvoy, was one of two new films opening in wide release.

It missed Box Office Pro’s three-day forecast of $51.5 million and was expected to collect $59.4 million through the Monday MLK holiday. “Dragon Ball Super: Broly,” a Japanese anime feature from 20th Century Fox, opened last Tuesday and brought in $8.7 million over the weekend.

January is one of the slowest months for theaters, and that’s not lost on major studios, which set a light release schedule after the busy holiday season. “Glass” was made for just $20 million, according to Box Office Mojo, suggesting the movie will enjoy a profitable run.

The schedule can give a movie a chance to stand out and offers older releases an opportunity to extend their run. It’s also a time when fans can catch up with awards hopefuls. Last weekend’s leader, “The Upside,” with Kevin Hart and Bryan Cranston, landed in second place with $15.7 million in sales. Box Office Pro was predicting $16.3 million for the STX Entertainment release through Sunday, while Box Office Mojo was forecasting $19 million through Monday.

“Glass” overcame tough reviews to land in first place. Rottentomatoes.com, which compiled critics ratings, said just 35 percent of critics were recommending the movie..