Turtle Power does exist after all. The heroes in a half shell surpassed industry and analyst expectations by more than $20 million, raking in an estimated $65 million in its first weekend in theaters. With an additional $28.7 million from 19 international territories, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which cost $125 million to produce, has earned $93.7 million globally. No wonder Paramount has already announced plans for a summer 2016 sequel.
The Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies pic may not have resonated with the critics, but that didn’t seem to matter much to its target audience: kids. While moviegoers overall slapped the Michael Bay-produced movie with a lackluster B Cinema Score, kids were much more enthusiastic, giving it an A overall. Audiences on the whole were mostly male (61 percent) and a significant portion (45 percent) were under 25 years old.
Guardians of the Galaxy took second place with $41.5 million, falling an expected 56 percent from its blockbuster debut. For comparison’s sake, Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Thor:The Dark World fell 57 percent in weekend two, while Iron Man 3 fell 58 percent. Guardians has grossed $175.9 million in its first 10 days and could turn out to be one of the highest grossing films of the year. Disney and Marvel’s sci-fi space opera is also doing quite well internationally: Its worldwide total is $313 million, with debuts in France, Spain, Germany, Italy, Japan, and China still to come.
Warner Bros.’ disaster flick Into the Storm (Cinema Score: B) opened at No. 3 with an estimated $18 million from 3,434 screens. It’s not a stunning debut, but it’s in line with expectations for the $50 million movie on a crowded weekend, which bumped earnings up 16 percent overall from the box office take a year ago.
Disney’s The Hundred-Foot Journey (Cinema Score: A) opened a bit ahead of studio estimates with an estimated $11.1 million at 2,023 locations. The $22 million pic starring Helen Mirren can be expected to hold nicely over the next few weeks given the high Cinema Score and the tendency of older moviegoers not to rush out to see new releases on opening weekend. Audiences for the movie this weekend were 59 percent female and 42 percent over age 50.
Lucy managed to edge out Step Up All In for the final spot in the top five with an estimated $9.3 million in its third weekend. Still playing at 3,147 North American locations, the Scarlett Johansson-led actioner also crossed the $100 million mark worldwide, thanks to this weekend’s $15 million from 15 international territories.
Step Up All In (Cinema Score: B+) grossed an estimated $6.6 million from 2,702 theaters—the weakest debut in the five-film franchise, which has earned more than $600 million at the worldwide box office. Lionsgate’s Summit Entertainment is handling distribution on this installment, which has also already made $37.7 million internationally (with $6.4 million of that this weekend).
The top five:
1. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles — $65 million (new)
2. Guardians of the Galaxy — $41.53 million (domestic total: $175.9 million)
3. Into the Storm — $18 million (new)
4. The Hundred-Foot Journey — $11.12 million (new)
5. Lucy — $9.3 million ($97.4 million domestic total)
Finally, in limited release, Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan’s indie romantic comedy What If (Cinema Score: A-) grossed an estimated $130K from 20 screens, with its expansion continuing next weekend.