Heading into the weekend, 20th Century Fox's War For the Planet of the Apes was riding a wave of critical buzz, which many box office analysts thought could lead to this sequel out-grossing Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' opening weekend of $72.6 million. While War for the Planet of the Apes did come out on top, it didn't fare quite so well, earning $56.5 million in its debut, just barely out-grossing the first movie in the trilogy, the $54.8 million earned by 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes.
This weekend was expected to be a much closer race between Spider-Man: Homecoming and War for the Planet of the Apes, especially after Homecoming opened with an impressive $117 million last weekend, which was much higher than most box office projections. However, this new Spider-Man movie suffered quite a big drop, according to Box Office Mojo, falling 61.4% to come in second place with $45.2 million. This brings the movie's domestic total to $208.2 million, with just $139.5 million coming from international territories for a worldwide total of $347.7 million, from a $175 million budget. The international tally isn't quite as high as it should be, since the movie still hasn't arrived in China, the second biggest box office market in the world.
This opening weekend for the new Apes movie is far less than many expected as well, despite glowing reviews, with an impressive 95% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. It also didn't fare quite so well internationally, opening with just $46 million for a worldwide tally of $102.5 million, from a $150 million budget. Still, this opening falls in line with a summer trend of huge franchise movies severely underperforming, with Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, Cars 3, Transformers: The Last Knight and more all poised to post franchise lows. War For the Planet of the Apes is also suffering from the Chinese summer blackout, and it isn't quite clear when that movie will arrive in the Middle Kingdom. The top 5 is rounded out by Despicable Me 3 ($18.9 million), Baby Driver ($8.7 million) and The Big Sick ($7.6 million), which expanded nationwide this weekend after a successful limited release run, where it opened with an astonishing $421,577 from just five theaters for a whopping $84,315 per-screen average.
Rounding out the top 10 this weekend is Wonder Woman ($6.8 million), Wish Upon ($5.5 million), Cars 3 ($3.1 million), Transformers: The Last Knight ($2.7 million), The House ($1.7 million). Also opening in limited release this weekend is Roadside Attractions' drama Lady Macbeth, which earned Argot Pictures' documentary Almost Sunrise, which earned $68,813 from five theaters for a solid $13,763 per-screen average and Big World Pictures' foreign film False Confessions, which took in $7,670 from two theaters for a $3,835 per-screen average. No box office data was released for Vertical Entertainment's drama Blind, Indican's sci-fi film Man Underground, Music Box Films' drama The Midwife and Vertical Entertainment's documentary The Possession of Janet Moses.
Looking ahead to next weekend, Warner Bros. rolls out its highly-anticipated World War II thriller Dunkirk, from director Christopher Nolan, along with Universal's R-rated comedy Girls Trip and STX Entertainment's sci-fi thriller Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. Dunkirk is expected to open in more than 3,600 theaters, while Girls Trip will debut in 2,400 theaters and Valerian arriving in roughly 3,400 theaters. Also opening in limited release is CFI Releasing's The Fencer, Parade Deck Films' The Gracefield Incident, Magnolia's comedy Landline, Music Box Films' drama The Midwife, Vertical Entertainment's family film Scales: Mermaids Are Real and Strand's drama The Untamed. Take a look at the box office estimates for this weekend, and check back Tuesday for next week's predictions.