Paramount’s sci-fi behemoth delivered the biggest North American debut so far in 2014 on an estimated $100m as the $301.3m global launch eclipsed everything in its orbit.

Box office for the top 12 gained 24% against last weekend and dropped approximately 5% against the comparable session in 2014, when Monsters University ruled for the second weekend in a row and The Heat opened in second place.

Michael Bay’s fourth entry in the sci-fi franchise arrived in 4,233 theatres and drew a 64-36 male-female split and 58% over-25 crowd.

This was the second biggest debut of the franchise behind $108.9m scored by Revenge Of The Fallen in 2009.

Imax used the occasion to demonstrate its huge affinity for tentpole releases as 619 global screens generated $27.3m of which $10.7m came from 353 North American screens.

Mark Wahlberg joins the action alongside Peter Cullen as the returning voice of Optimus Prime. Nicola Peltz, Stanley Tucci and Li Bingbing also star.

Elsewhere Disney’s Maleficent in fifth place crossed $200m in the fifth weekend to reach $201.9m.

Last weekend’s champion Think Like A Man Too slipped a hefty 64% to number four to reach $48.2m, which is a little over half of the 2012 original’s $91.5m final gross.

Jersey Boys dropped off a modest 43% and two places to rank sixth on $27.3m after two sessions.

RADiUS-TWC released Bong Joon-ho’s sci-fi Snowpiercer starring Chris Evans and the film took $162,100 from eight theatres for an impressive $20,263 average.

TWC opened John Carney’s Toronto 2013 hit Begin Again (formerly Can A Song Save Your Life?) starring Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo and the musical excelled, grossing $148,000 from five for a $29,600 average.

China Lion opened The Breakup Guru on $67,000 from 12, while Pantelion released America on $39,000 from three; TWC release Yves Saint Laurent on $24,500 from two; and FilmBuff / Participant Media launched documentary The Internet’s Own Boy on $24,300 from 12 as the cue-up for what will be primarily a digital run.

Zeitgeist release the Hindi-language Siddarth on $4,500 on a single screen.

Next weekend’s wide releases are: Warner Bros’ comedy Tammy starring Melissa McCarthy; Sony/Screen Gems’ horror film Deliver Us From Evil; and the children’s release Earth To Echo from Relativity.

Estimated Top 10 North America June 27-29 2014
Film (Dist) / Est wkd gross / Est total to date

1 (-) Transformers: Age Of Extinction (Paramount) PPI $100m –

2 (2) 22 Jump Street (Sony) SPRI $15.4m $139.8m

3 (3) How To Train Your Dragon 2 (Fox-DreamWorks Animation) Fox International $13.1m $121.8m

4 (1) Think Like A Man Too (Sony/Screen Gems) SPRI $10.4m $48.2m

5 (5) Maleficent (Disney) WDSMPI $8.2m $201.9m

6 (4) Jersey Boys (Warner Bros) WBPI $7.6m $27.3m

7 (6) Edge Of Tomorrow (Warner Bros) WBPI $5.2m $84.2m

8 (7) The Fault In Our Stars (Fox) Fox International $4.8m $109.5m

9 (8) X-Men: Days Of Future Past (Fox) Fox International $3.3m $223.4m

10 (10) Chef (Open Road) Aldamisa International $1.7m $19.4m