A raunchy romantic comedy, an anarchy thriller and an animated kids' flick weren't enough to unseat the evolved primates ruling the box office.
"Dawn of the Planet of the Apes," the 3-D sequel to the 2011 blockbuster "Rise of the Planet of the Apes," took in $36 million in the U.S. and Canada during its second weekend at the multiplex, according to studio estimates.
Twentieth Century Fox's latest entry in the "Planet of the Apes" franchise, which cost $170 million to make, continued to benefit from positive reviews, strong word of mouth and the strong performance of its 2011 predecessor. The second-weekend numbers brought the sequel's cumulative gross to about $139 million.
The "Apes" had serious competition with "Sex Tape," "The Purge: Anarchy" and "Planes: Fire & Rescue," all opening this weekend.
Universal Pictures' thriller "The Purge: Anarchy" opened at No. 2, besting the slate of new releases by bringing in $28.4 million its first weekend.
"The Purge: Anarchy," the follow-up to last summer's hit "The Purge," follows several people (played by Frank Grillo, Zoe Soul, Zach Gilford, Kiele Sanchez and Carmen Ejogo) as they attempt to survive a 12-hour period when all crime is legal.
The $3 million original starring Ethan Hawke debuted at No. 1 its opening weekend last year with $34.1 million. The sequel, which cost about $9 million to make, is the first horror film since last September to open to more than $20 million. Audiences gave it an average B score, according to polling firm CinemaScore, a high mark for a film in the genre.
"I think people got caught up in the first one, and they came to see the second one," said Nikki Rocco, Universal's president of domestic distribution. "We are really pleased with the results. The marketplace has been very difficult for these types of films.
"There's always a built-in audience when it comes to horror," said Rocco, who hopes the franchise continues. "But maybe there's been nothing compelling until now."
"Planes: Fire & Rescue" came in at No. 3 after it pulled in $18 million. The animated family film, which cost about $50 million to make, follows firefighting aircraft (voiced by Dane Cook, Ed Harris, Julie Bowen and Wes Studi) who team up to battle a wildfire.
Its 2013 predecessor, "Planes," tallied more than $90 million during its domestic run.
"Sex Tape," starring Jason Segel and Cameron Diaz, might not have turned on critics. (It got a 20% positive score on Rotten Tomatoes.) But the film still managed to pull in $15 million to land at No. 4 for the weekend.
The Columbia Pictures raunchy rom-com, which cost about $40 million to make, follows married couple Jay (Segel) and Annie (Diaz), who try to bring the spark back into their marriage but their bedroom romp accidentally goes public. Naughty hijinks follow.
"Sex Tape" reunited Diaz and Segel with director Jake Kasdan. Kasdan directed their 2011 comedy "Bad Teacher," which took in $216 million worldwide.