Fox’s Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes held off the challenge of three potential threats and climbed to $139m in its second weekend as the top 12 North American releases slipped 25% against 2013.

Apes cost roughly $170m to make and is about to break even for the studio after two weekends factoring in the $103m international running total.

Universal released its horror sequel The Purge: Anarchy in second place on $28.4m from 2,805 theatres.

The film will be lucrative given its $9m price tag, although this opening weekend represented a 17% fall against The Purge, which opened on $34.1m on approximately 270 fewer screens in June 2013.

The inflation adjustment for such a recent comp is negligible. For the record The Purge cost $3m and recorded a lifetime gross of $64.5m.

Disney’s Planes spin-off Planes: Fire & Rescue landed at number three on $18m, falling 19% against the original $22.2m debut of Planes in August 2013. That film opened on 3,702 sites, around 120 fewer than the new release, and went on to amass $90.3m.

Sony released the Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel comedy Sex Tape in fourth place on an unremarkable $15m from 3,062 sites.

Paramount’s Transformers: Age Of Extinction continued to plod towards $250m and whatever happens will finish its North American run as the lowest-scoring of the sci-fi franchise. It fell three places to number five on $10m for $227.2m after four sessions.

International is a different story: T4 has surged to an estimated $659.1m and $886.3m worldwide.

A coupe of old pros populate the lower ranks of the top 10 after weeks of distinguished service: Sony’s 22 Jump Street at number seven has grossed $180.5m after six sessions and Maleficent ranks ninth on $228.4m after eight.

TWC’s Toronto 2013 hit Begin Again fell out of the top 10 in its fourth weekend and ranks number nine on $9.5m after four.

In its second weekend, Boyhood expanded from five to 33 venues and climbed four places to number 15 through IFC, adding $1.2m for $1.8m and recording an exceptional per-site average of $36,303.

Elsewhere in the limited release arena, Millennium Entertainment opened the thriller Persecuted on $959,000 from 736 at number 19, while Focus’ crowd-funded Zack Braff film Wish I Was Here scored $495,000 from 68.

Fox Searchlight debuted Mike Cahill’s acclaimed science-thriller I Origins on $28,700 from four sites, while Rocky Mountain Pictures opened the documentary There’s No Place Like Utopia on $27,800 in a single venue.

Drafthouse released Michel Gondry’s surreal romance Mood Indigo starring Audrey Tautou on $25,100 from two.  Music Box opened Maria Sole Tognazzi’s Italian drama A Five Star Life on $16,500 in a single venue and Bond/360 debuted the documentary Alive Inside on $7,200, also in a single site.

Next weekend sees the arrivals of the following wide releases: Paramount’s Hercules starring Dwayne Johnson; Universal’s sci-fi thriller Lucy from Luc Besson starring Scarlett Johansson; and the comedy-drama And So It Goes through Clarius Entertainment.

Estimated Top 10 North America July 18-20 2014
Film (Dist) / Est wkd gross / Est total to date

1 (1) Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes (Fox) Fox International $36m $138.9m

2 (-) The Purge: Anarchy (Universal) UPI $28.4m –

3 (-) Planes: Fire & Rescue (Buena Vista) WDSMPI $18m –

4 (-) Sex Tape (Sony) SPRI $15m –

5 (2) Transformers: Age Of Extinction (Paramount) PPI $10m $227.2m

6 (3) Tammy (Warner Bros) WBPI $7.6m $71.3m

7 (4) 22 Jump Street (Sony) SPRI $4.7m $180.5m

8 (5) How To Train Your Dragon 2 (Fox-DreamWorks Animation) Fox International $3.8m $160.7m

9 (8) Maleficent (Disney) WDSMPI $3.3m $228.4m

10 (6) Earth To Echo (Relativity Media) Relativity International $3.26m $31.9m