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Jason Bourne knocks out the competition at the box office

2016-08-01 09:00

Los Angeles — Between the return of Matt Damon as super spy Jason Bourne, the promise of laughing along with a few fed-up ladies in the raunchy comedy Bad Moms and the dark internet thriller Nerve, all of which had strong debuts, there was something new for everyone in theatres this weekend.

Even after a nearly 10-year hiatus, Matt Damon as Jason Bourne still draws a significant audience. The Paul Greengrass-directed sequel raked in a healthy $60 million in its opening weekend, according to studio estimates Sunday.

Not adjusted for inflation, it's the second highest opening of the series, behind The Bourne Ultimatum's $69.3m debut in 2007 — the last time Damon appeared as the Robert Ludlum-created character.

With a nine-year gap between films, Universal kept awareness high in the lead up to the release with airings of the Matt Damon Bourne trilogy on eight of NBCUniversal's networks. Social media channels also pushed out a video where Matt Damon recaps the previous three films in 90 seconds.

The original R-rated comedy Bad Moms, from the writers of The Hangover, also had reason to crack open the champagne this weekend. The STX Entertainment film, starring Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn as a trio of moms on the edge, blew past its $20m budget to take in earning $23.4m in its first days in theaters.

Bad Moms earned solid A CinemaScore from first weekend audiences, indicating that the film should continue to gain traction in the coming weeks.

"This was a classic case of counter-programming," said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for comScore. "To compete on that level with two of the biggest names in box office history (Bourne and Star Trek) is impressive. It tells you that late in the summer, this is what people are looking for — something different and edgy."

Bad Moms, which debuted at No. 3, just barely missed second place to Star Trek Beyond, which fell 59% in its second weekend in theaters with $24m. The Paramount sequel has earned $105.7m to date.

The Secret Life of Pets continues to perform extremely well, taking fourth place with $18.2m even after four weekends in theaters. The Illumination Entertainment and Universal film has earned a total of $296.2m.

Rounding up the top 5

In fifth place, the micro-budget thriller Lights Out took in $10.8m. The film cost only $5m to make and has already grossed $42.9m.

The youthful thriller Nerve also did well, taking in $15.1m since launching on Wednesday. It earned $9m over the weekend for an 8th place finish. Starring Dave Franco and Emma Roberts, Nerve cost a reported $20m to make.

Overall, the box office is up nearly 30% from this weekend last year and up 3% for the year.

"This has been a summer with some of the biggest ups and downs that I've ever seen," Dergarabedian said. "This is the late summer push that we've all been hoping for."

Next week should prove even bigger too with the release of Suicide Squad.

Read more on:    box office  |  jason bourne  |  movies

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