Transformers 3 reigns at box office
The latest Transformers movie has delivered the biggest opening weekend at the US box office so far this year.
Distributor Paramount Pictures said Transformers: Dark Of The Moon took in 97.4 million dollars in the US in its first weekend. That beat the 90.2 million debut of Disney's Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.
But the haul for the sci-fi sequel was down from the 109 million dollar first weekend for 2009's Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen.
Since opening last Tuesday, the new Transformers pulled in 162 million dollars, a drop from 200.1 million for Revenge Of The Fallen in its first five days.
Paramount estimates Dark Of The Moon will hit 180.9 million dollars in the US by the end of the long Fourth of July weekend.
The third Transformers movie added 210 million dollars overseas, giving the film a worldwide total of 372 million.
The movie broke the three-day Fourth of July weekend record for US revenue previously held by 2004's Spider-Man 2 at 88.2 million dollars. But factoring in higher admission prices, Spider-Man 2 sold more tickets.
The movie also set a record for Imax releases, delivering the large-screen format's first-ever 20-million-plus opening globally.
The third Transformers flick reunites Shia LaBeouf and director Michael Bay, who gave the franchise the 3D treatment for the first time as NASA's 1960s moon landing becomes a pivotal event in the ongoing war between the giant shape-shifting Autobots and their evil counterparts, the Decepticons.
Elsewhere, Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts had a modest opening for their back-to-school romance Larry Crowne, which came in at number four, taking 13 million dollars.