Based on Friday results, at least, the Summer box office slump seems to be drawing to an end this weekend.
Sci-fi action movie Lucy opened in first place with an exceptional $17.1 million haul. Meanwhile, Hercules outperformed modest expectations, though it will probably still fall short of $30 million this weekend. Lucy's $17.1 million debut is significantly higher than Angelina Jolie's Salt, which took in $12.5 million on opening day in July 2010. More impressive is the fact that Lucy opened nearly on par with action sequels Taken 2 and The Bourne Supremacy (both around $18.4 million).
The Scarlett Johansson flick did receive a poor "C+" CinemaScore, which suggests word-of-mouth will be mixed. Still, it's guaranteed to earn at least $43 million this weekend, and could wind up near $47 million.
Playing at 3,595 theaters, Hercules opened to an estimated $11.05 million on Friday. That's roughly equal to the $10.6 million that last month's Edge of Tomorrow earned on opening day. However, it's a bit lower than The Rock's The Scorpion King ($12.6 million) and 2012's Wrath of the Titans ($12.3 million). For the weekend, Hercules will take in $28 to $30 million.
Going in to its third weekend, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes fell a steep 55 percent to $4.7 million. The movie passed $160 million yesterday, and should earn around $16 million this weekend. The Purge: Anarchy plummeted 74 percent to $3.4 million. In comparison, the first Purge fell 82 percent at the same point. Meanwhile, Planes: Fire & Rescue dropped 57 percent, while Sex Tape fell 67 percent.
Opening at 1,762 theaters, Michael Douglas/Diane Keaton rom-com And So It Goes earned a weak $1.36 million. Meanwhile The Fluffy Movie opened to $513,000 from 432 theaters. Weekend Projections 1. Lucy - $46 million 2. Hercules - $29 million 3. Dawn/Apes - $16 million 4. The Purge - $10 million 5. Planes - $9 million