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Apes steal the top spot in the UK, while Pudsey bombs

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When summer hits and all the kids are on holiday there is only so much to do, which is why usually parents will think of new ways to get the kids out of the house and there is always a trip to the cinema along the way. Hollywood knows that this is a key time to bring out rom-coms and action thrillers to attract summer audiences. However this hasn’t been working for a while now, with this summer being the eighth year running that box office sales have been down and also the biggest year on year fall in nearly thirty years. This is also mirrored in the US with no film expected to make more than $300m (£176,938,956.10) for the first time since 2001. Some believe that the blame for the overall decline could be leaning towards Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video making watching films easy and accessible in audiences’ own homes. But, Paul Dergarabedian, senior analyst for film data experts Rentrak, blames studios for the lack of any really great blockbusters coming through, stating, ‘People still want to go to the movies, they just want to go to really good movies.’

The latest of the current Planet of the Apes franchise, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, has dethroned Transformers: Age of Extinction on its opening weekend raking in £8,705,995, beating its predecessor Rise of the Planet of the Apes which made £5.8m and making it the fourth biggest opening of the year. The story starts in the wake of a disaster that changed the world, with the growing and genetically evolving apes finding themselves at a critical point with the human race. The film was met with critical acclaim, with reviewers praising its visual effects, story, direction, acting, and emotional depth with the consensus on Rotten Tomatoes stating, ‘With intelligence and emotional resonance to match its stunning special effects, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes expands on its predecessor with an exciting and ambitious burst of sci-fi achievement.’

How to Train Your Dragon 2 held firm in second with £1,877,346 on its fourth weekend on release and is on its way to surpassing its predecessors’ £17.4m total UK  haul, as its total has reached £12,864,015.

Falling to third is Paramount’s Transformers: Age of Extinction which has made £1,790,491 with a total of £15,516,101 on its second weekend with the aim to beat its predecessor, which made £23.5m, to avoid becoming the weakest UK performer of the series.

A strong weekend for event cinema releases, which saw two chart in the top five and one break a UK record. Charting at fourth was Monty Python Live (Mostly), the final ever performance of the comedy icons from the O2, which brought in £1,178,091 from its opening weekend. Monty Python was a British television comedy sketch show that first aired on the BBC in 1969 and went on to produce films, books and theatre sketches. Their performance  at the O2 featured the five surviving members of the comedy troupe performing a musical and comical show for a three-hour set. The opening is sixth on the all-time list of event cinema releases, behind the likes of Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor.

In fifth place, and almost as impressive, was André Rieu’s 2014 Maastricht Concert which made £830,586 on its opening weekend making it the highest grossing music concert event release of all time in the UK, following the record-breaking opening of Rieu’s 2013 concert.

Remaining in sixth place is Mrs. Brown’s Boys D’Movie which collected £559,173 from cinema ticket sales last weekend bringing its total in the UK to £13,263,304 after four weeks on release.

Pudsey the Dog: The Movie flopped on its opening weekend making just £446,450 and is the lowest ever opening for director Nick Moore, who also directed Horrid Henry: The Movie which made £1.3m in its opening weekend. Produced by Simon Cowell, the film is based on a dancing dog and winner of Britain’s Got Talent, Pudsey and owner Ashleigh Butler, which was inspired by Simon Cowell.

Drama Boyhood remains in the charts in eighth place making £312,255 on its second weekend and bringing in a total of £896,723 in the UK. Following is romantic drama The Fault in Our Stars, in ninth, after pulling in £278,559 last weekend, the film has grossed £10,570,369 after five weeks in the top ten.

Finally, in the top ten, sees comedy 22 Jump Street still clinging on after seven weeks with £224,783 bringing its total to £18,035,241 in the UK.

A few big films heading our way next week with the release of American adventure Hercules, science fiction adventure Earth to Echo and horror The Purge: Anarchy. Look out also for The House of Magic, Joe and Northwest.

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