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By Pamela McClintock, The Hollywood Reporter
Matt Damon’s decision to return to the big screen as a mysterious CIA agent trying to regain his memory has paid off.
Universal’s Jason Bourne topped the North American box office with a strong $60 million from 4,026 theaters, one of the best showings of summer to date and one of the few franchise titles to come in ahead of its predecessor. In 2012, The Bourne Legacy, starring Jeremy Renner, debuted to a soft $38.1 million. However, Jason Bourne didn’t match the $69 million launch of Damon’s The Bourne Ultimatum in 2007, but still ranks as the actor’s second-best opening.
The action film is also impressing overseas, where it topped the foreign chart with $50 million from 56 markets, the best opening of any Bourne title and putting the movie’s global bow at $110.1 million. South Korea led with a stellar $11.2 million, followed by $10.2 million in the U.K., where it came in second behind the bow of Finding Dory ($10.8 million).
Jason Bourne, costing $120 million to produce, reunites Damon with director Paul Greengrass, who helmed The Bourne Supremacy (2004) and Ultimatum. Males made up 55 percent of ticket buyers in North America, while 60 percent of the audience was over the age of 35.
The latest installment, earning an A- CinemaScore, sees Damon’s former CIA operative come out of hiding just as a new government program has been created to hunt him down while he tries to recover all of his memories. Alicia Vikander, Tommy Lee Jones, Vincent Cassel, Julia Stiles and Riz Ahmed also star.
The weekend’s other high-profile entry, STX Entertainment’s femme-skewing Bad Moms, did solid, but not spectacular, business in its debut, earning $23.4 million from 3,215 theaters to make one of the better recent openings for an R-rated comedy. And that was enough for a third-place finish behind Jason Bourne and Star Trek Beyond, which earned $24 million-plus in its second weekend to jump the $100 million mark.
Females made up more than 80 percent of Bad Mom’s audience, and many of them older, with 48 percent of all ticket buyers over the age of 34.
On Saturday, it looked like Bad Moms would earn $27 million-$30 million for the weekend. Last summer, Trainwreck opened to $30.1 million, while Spy debuted to $29.1 million. Still, Bad Moms is already on solid financial ground, having cost roughly $20 million to produce after rebates and tax incentives. And it’s the best showing for STX to date.
Bad Moms was directed and written by Jon Lucas and Scott Moore (the team behind The Hangover script), and follows a trio of overworked and under-appreciated moms — played by Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn — who rebel and embark on an adventure of freedom and self-indulgence. The movie, nabbing a stellar A CinemaScore, co-stars Annie Mumolo, Jay Hernandez, Jada Pinkett Smith and Christina Applegate.
And finally, Nerve, Lionsgate’s thriller starring Emma Roberts and Dave Franco took in an estimated $15 million over its five-day debut after hitting theaters Wednesday. Its projected weekend take is $9 million. Directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, the film, receiving an A- CinemaScore, follows the duo as they get sucked into a dangerous modern game of truth or dare.
Nerve cost just north of $20 million to make.
Among holdovers, Paramount’s Star Trek Beyond jumped the $100 million mark in its second weekend to finish Sunday with a North American total of $105.7 million. Overseas, the sci-fi adventure took in $13 million from 40 markets for an early foreign total of $54.8 million and global cume of $160.5 million.
Universal and Illumination Entertainment’s The Secret Life of Pets held at No. 4 in its fourth weekend with $18.2 million for a hearty domestic total of $296.2 million. Overseas, the animated hit took in another $29.5 million from its first 21 markets for a foreign cume of $99 million and global haul of $395.2 million. While it’s still in the heart of its run, that’s nothing compared to Pixar and Disney’s Dory, which has now grossed $831 million worldwide.
New Line and Warner Bros.’ horror hit Lights Out. The film continued to impress in its second weekend, falling a slim 42 percent to $10.8 million for a domestic total of $42.9 million (it cost only $5 million to make).
Lights Out rounded out the top five, while Ice Age: Collision Course fell to No. 6 in its second outing as it continued to lose to Pets. From Fox, Collision Course declined 51 percent to $10.5 million for a domestic total of $42.1 million.
On the political front, conservative author and filmmaker Dinesh D'Souza’s documentary Hillary’s America: The Secret History of the Democratic Party stayed at No. 10, earning $2.4 million from 1,066 theaters for a total $8.7 million. Last week, the critical look at Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton became the top-grossing doc of the year.
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