War for the Planet of the Apes Climbs to Top
Audiences went ape last weekend (July 14-16), bringing 20th Century Fox’s War for the Planet of the Apes to a first place debut with $56.26 million. A neck-and-neck race was predicted for the top spot between War and last weekend’s leader Spider-Man: Homecoming, but the latter fell further than expected to $44.21 million, giving War a decent lead.
The third and final installment in the rebooted Planet of the Apes trilogy starring Andy Serkis and Woody Harrelson, War started 22.1 percent behind the second installment, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. In pure dollars, it starts 3.0 percent ahead of the first installment, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, but that film was released in 2011 — adjusted for ticket price inflation, War starts 7.4 percent behind Rise.
Still, War should be considered a decent if not overwhelming success for 20th Century Fox, which had earned the top gross in only one of the previous 15 weekends. The film was boosted by its great word of mouth.
Sony Pictures’ Spider-Man: Homecoming dropped farther than expected in its second weekend, falling 62.2 percent $44.21 million. That is a noticeably steeper second-weekend drop than other superhero films this year: 55.5 percent for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, 43.3 percent for Wonder Woman and 56.9 percent for Logan.
On Sunday, Spider-Man: Homecoming overtook the total gross of 2014’s previous franchise installment The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and appears likely to overtake 2011’s The Amazing Spider-Man by the end of the month unless it drops off particularly fast. Overtaking the cumulative gross for any of the three original Spider-Man installments starring Tobey Maguire will be much more difficult.
With a “healthy” wide debut in fifth place was The Big Sick from Lionsgate and Amazon Studios, making $7.53 million. Expanding into wide release on its third weekend after two in limited release, the romantic comedy-drama starring Kumail Nanjiani and Emily Gordon has now earned $15.97 million.
With a 97 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, the film could be the first release of the year to earn possible Best Picture buzz, albeit as a dark-horse candidate. That counter-programming likely attracted some adult audiences who otherwise wouldn’t be as interested in any other movies currently playing during the summer blockbuster season.
Broad Green Pictures’ Wish Upon earned a seventh place debut of $5.47 million. The low-budget fantasy horror thriller wasn’t expected to crack the top five, and its opening was about in line with the other three wide-release openings from Broad Green Pictures since the studio began in 2015.
Elsewhere at the box office, Universal Pictures’ Despicable Me 3 took third place with a 42.3 percent drop to $19.36 million. It is now pacing 28.3 percent and 31.8 percent behind Minions and Despicable Me 2 through the same period. Sony and TriStar Pictures’ Baby Driver took fourth place, slipping a respectable 33.0 percent to $8.71 million.
The top 10 films last weekend earned $156.03 million total. That’s 21.3 percent behind the $198.32 million earned by the top 10 the previous weekend. It is also 24.2 percent below the $205.9 million earned by the top 10 on the same weekend last year, when The Secret Life of Pets led with $104.3 million.
|This Week||Last Week||Movie||Weekend Gross||Cumulative Gross||Weeks|
|1||—||War for the Planet of the Apes||$56.26M||$56.26M||1|
|3||2||Despicable Me 3||$19.36M||$188.40M||3|
|5||8||The Big Sick||$7.53M||$15.97M||4|
|9||5||Transformers: The Last Knight||$2.84M||$124.95M||4|