'Lucy' Wins Race to No. 1 at Box Office Against 'Hercules'

'Lucy' Wins Race to No. 1 at Box Office Against 'Hercules'

The Scarlett Johansson starrer opens strong with an estimated $44 million against The Rock-led flick which debuts with approximately $29 million.
"Lucy" beats "Hercules" this weekend in North America. The Scarlett Johansson starrer directed by Luc Besson outshines the Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson actioner helmed by Brett Ratner on their first weekend. The former debuted with approximately $44 million, easily slaying the latter which has to settle at No. 2 with only around $29 million.

"Lucy" is graded C+ by CinemaScore. Supported by Morgan Freeman, the R-rated flick centers on ScarJo's character who gains superhuman powers after the drugs planted inside her tummy leaked. Audiences were evenly split between genders, with 35 percent under the age of 25 and 29 percent Hispanic.

The film marks the biggest opening for Besson as a director. It earned four times as much as his 2011 produced movie "Colombiana" which also stars a female action hero (Zoe Saldana). Moreover, it's a career high for Johansson as a lead and the latest female-centric film to do well this summer after "Maleficent" and "The Fault in Our Stars".

"It's a great result in every depressed marketplace," said Universal distribution chief Nikki Rocco. "And I think it says that more female action stars are called for."

"Hercules", meanwhile, drew male (58 percent of overall audience), while the majority of them was over the age of 25 (64 percent). Paramount's vice chairman Rob Moore admits the movie was hurt by "Lucy". The two were initially not planned to face off each other. "Lucy" only filled in the vacant spot left by "Jupiter Ascending" which was moved to 2015.

Costing $100 million to produce, "Hercules" is expected to make up the lukewarm response in the U.S. overseas. "We'll get to a great number globally. Dwayne Johnson remains a huge star," Moore said. So far, it raked in $28.7 million from its first territories outside the States, including $12 million in Russia alone. It next hits the rest of Europe, Asia, and Latin America.
  1. "Lucy" - $44 million
  2. "Hercules" - $29 milllion
  3. "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" - $16.4 million
  4. "The Purge: Anarchy" - $9.9 million
  5. "Planes: Fire & Rescue" - $9.3 million
  6. "Sex Tape" - $6 million
  7. "Transformers: Age of Extinction" - $4.6 million
  8. "And So It Goes" - $4.6 million
  9. "Tammy" - $3.4 million
  10. "A Most Wanted Man" - $2.7 million

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