‘Planet of Apes’ Holds Off ‘Purge’ Sequel, ‘Planes 2’ and Limp ‘Sex Tape’ at Box Office

“Dawn” heads for $35 million repeat win, “Anarchy” on $27 million pace and Cameron Diaz-Jason Segel comedy on course for disappointing $16 million

“Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” held off three wide openers with an impressive $10.4 million Friday, and is poised to repeat as weekend box office champ ahead of horror sequel “The Purge: Anarchy.”

Buoyed by great reviews and strong word of mouth, Fox’s “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” is on pace for a $35 million three-day total in its second week. That would be a roughly 52 percent drop from last weekend, better than the holds of any recent No. 1 film. “Amazing Spider-Man 2,” “Godzilla,” “X-Men: Days of Future Past” and “Transformers: Age of Extinction” all fell off by more than 60 percent. It remains in a market-high 3,969 theaters.

Universal’s “The Purge: Anarchy” finished first Friday with $12.9 million from 2,806 theaters, which included $2.6 million from Thursday night shows. Horror films tend to be front-loaded however, and it will have a hard time keeping up with “Apes” on Saturday and Sunday, and should finish with a $27 million first weekend. That’s less than the $34 million that the original opened to, but still a very solid performance for a movie with a $9 million production budget.

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Moviegoers gave the thriller directed by James DeMonaco and starring Frank Grillo a “B” CinemaScore, better than the first film’s “C.”

Disney’s kid film “Planes: Fire and Rescue” took in $6.3 million from 3,826 theaters Friday and beat out Sony’s Cameron Diaz-Jason Segel R-rated comedy “Sex Tape,” which managed $5.6 million at 3,052 locations. That projects to a roughly $17 million weekend for “Planes 2” and a disappointing $16 million for “Sex Tape,” which analysts had projected would finish in the mid-$20 million range.

Audiences gave the kids film an “A” CinemaScore, but a weak “C+” to “Sex Tape.”

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On its current pace, “Sex Tape” will finish the weekend with just over half of the $31.6 million debut of “Bad Teacher,” the raunchy 2011 comedy that also featured Diaz and Segel and was directed by Jake Kasdan, and the $24 million debut of April’s “The Other Woman,” another R-rated comedy starring Diaz.

The $40 million comedy has been pounded by critics, and has just a 19 percent positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Depending on how big a bump the family crowd delivers on Saturday and Sunday, “Planes 2” could go higher, but it’s unlikely to top the $22.2 million debut of the original last August.

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“Transformers: Age of Extinction” was on its way to a $9 million fourth week and fifth place. “Tammy” ($7 million for the three days), “22 Jump Street” ($4 million) and “How to Train Your Dragon 2,” “Earth to Echo” and “Maleficent” should follow, all in the $3 million range.

At the specialty box office, Zach Braff‘s Kickstarter-funded “Wish I Was Here” opened to an OK $150,000 on 68 screens for Focus Features.