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By Daniel Garris

As was widely expected, Fox's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes held onto first place this weekend with $36.25 million. The critically acclaimed 3D sci-fi action sequel was down 50 percent from last weekend, which represented a very healthy second weekend hold for a blockbuster level film in the middle of summer. The film's second weekend hold was quite similar to the 49 percent 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes fell when it grossed $27.83 million during its second weekend of release. With a ten-day start of $139.21 million, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is running an impressive 32 percent ahead of the $105.21 million ten-day take of Rise of the Planet of the Apes. This weekend's hold is a strong sign for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes going forward, though the film will also soon be facing more direct competition from the likes of Universal's Lucy, Paramount's Hercules and Disney's Guardians of the Galaxy.

Universal's The Purge: Anarchy was easily the strongest of the weekend's three new wide releases, with a second place take of $29.82 million. The sequel to last year's break-out horror film debuted in line with expectations. However, the film did open 12 percent below the $34.06 million debut of The Purge. The Purge: Anarchy took in $13.01 million on Friday (which included an estimated $2.6 million from Thursday night shows), fell 27 percent on Saturday to gross $9.51 million and fell just 23 percent on Sunday to take in $7.29 million. That placed the film's opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.29 to 1, which represented a bit less initial front-loading than the 2.03 to 1 ratio registered by The Purge. The Purge: Anarchy will hope to hold up a bit better than The Purge did, in part from not having to face competition from the likes of Man of Steel and World War Z. The Purge: Anarchy received a solid B rating on CinemaScore. The audience breakdown for the film skewed slightly towards female moviegoers (52 percent) and towards moviegoers under the age of 25 (61 percent).

Planes: Fire and Rescue debuted in third with $17.51 million. The modestly budgeted computer animated sequel from Disney opened slightly below pre-release expectations and 21 percent below the $22.23 million debut of Planes last summer. While this summer has had a relatively limited amount of choices for family audiences, Planes: Fire and Rescue may have failed to have capitalized from the fairly empty family marketplace due in part to arriving in theatres so soon after its predecessor. Planes: Fire and Rescue opened with $6.37 million on Friday, increased 4 percent on Saturday to take in $6.61 million and fell 31 percent on Sunday to gross $4.53 million. That gave the film an opening weekend to Friday ratio of 2.75 to 1. Planes: Fire and Rescue received a strong A rating on CinemaScore. The audience breakdown for the film was split evenly between genders and skewed towards moviegoers 25 years and younger (59 percent). Family audiences represented 78 percent of the film's overall audience.

Sony's Sex Tape debuted in fourth with a significantly poorer than expected $14.61 million. The R-rated comedy starring Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel opened a disappointing 54 percent softer than the $31.60 million start of 2011's Bad Teacher. Sex Tape appears to have been hurt from both its poor critical reviews and from arriving in the marketplace on the heels of a number of successful comedies over the past few months (The Other Woman, Neighbors, 22 Jump Street and Tammy). Sex Tape opened with $5.67 million on Friday (which included an estimated $1.1 million from Thursday night shows), fell 7 percent on Saturday to gross $5.28 million and declined 31 percent on Sunday to gross $3.66 million. That placed the film's opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.58 to 1. While Sex Tape could be helped out going forward by the lack of new comedies entering the marketplace over the next few weeks, its troubling C+ rating on CinemaScore isn't a good early sign. The audience breakdown for Sex Tape skewed slightly towards female moviegoers (53 percent) and moviegoers 30 years and over (52 percent).

Transformers: Age of Extinction rounded out the weekend's top five with $9.85 million. The fourth installment of Paramount's blockbuster sci-fi action franchise finally stabilized this weekend, as it was down a solid 40 percent. Transformers: Age of Extinction has grossed $227.00 million through 24 days of release. While that already makes the film one of the year's highest grossing releases thus far domestically, it is also a significant 28.5 percent softer than the $317.37 million 24-day take of 2011's Transformers: Dark of the Moon.

Warner's Tammy placed in sixth with $7.40 million. The Melissa McCarthy comedy vehicle was down a solid 41 percent and was likely helped out a bit this weekend by the poorer than expected start of Sex Tape. Tammy has grossed a very solid $71.05 million in 19 days, which already gives the film a current total gross to opening weekend ratio of 3.29 to 1.

On the platform front, IFC Films' Boyhood maintained momentum nicely this weekend by taking in $1.17 million from 34 locations. That gave the film a strong per-location average of $34,418 for the frame and represented a 202 percent increase over last weekend's five-location start. Boyhood has grossed a strong $1.79 million in ten days of platform release and will expand into additional locations next weekend.

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Award-winning film sound engineer Dennis S. Sands has upgraded his Sound Waves SB studio with a Meyer Sound cinema loudspeaker system for mixing in Dolby Atmos. Located in Santa Barbara, Calif., Sands's private studio is the first Dolby Atmos dubbing stage dedicated exclusively to native mixing of film music.

"I'd heard Meyer Sound systems at several well-known post-production studios," says Sands. "I was immediately impressed with the quality of the sound, the accuracy, and the depth and richness of the entire soundtrack. It was obvious Meyer Sound was the direction to go for the studio."

Sands's monitoring system is anchored by three Acheron® 80 screen channel loudspeakers and two X-800C high-power and X-400C cinema subwoofers each. Perimeter and overhead reinforcement comprises 14 HMS-10 and 10 HMS-12 surround loudspeakers with IntelligentDC technology, while a Galileo® loudspeaker management system with one Galileo 408 processor supplies drive and equalization. The system was designed and installed by Ron Lagerlof of Los Angeles-based Visioneering Design Company in consultation with Andy Potvin of Dolby Laboratories.

"It's easy to see why Dennis was pre-sold on Meyer Sound," says Lagerlof. "The loudspeakers have extremely low distortion and accurate phase response. You hear exactly what's there, and nothing else."

Since installation, Sands has finished native Atmos film score mixes for "Mr. Peabody & Sherman" and the 2014 "Godzilla" reboot. He has also completed a 7.1 mix of "Maze Runner" and television mixes for the "Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey" series.

Originally built as a private dubbing stage for director Andrew Davis, Sands's studio was designed by film sound legend Tomlinson Holman. The room features a 12-by-20-foot screen, a Euphonix System 5-MC DAW controller, a Euphonix CS3000 digitally controlled analog console, and four linked Pro Tools systems. A Focusrite RedNet 6 MADI bridge connects the Dolby Atmos RMU (Rendering and Mastering Unit) to a BSS SoundWeb London DSP system, which is used primarily for signal routing when switching from Atmos to 5.1 or 7.1 monitoring.

"People who have worked with me in the room before are very impressed with the improvement," reports Sands. "Reactions have been uniformly positive. For me, the monitoring decision was a no-brainer. Everything I do here translates beautifully onto the dubbing stage."

Dennis Sands has credits on nearly 300 feature films as a score mixer or re-recording mixer, earning four Academy Award nominations and winning two Cinema Audio Society Awards, including one for Lifetime Achievement.

Ron Lagerlof shares his insights into immersive cinema systems in Q&A "What to Know about the Loudspeakers in Immersive Atmos or Auro 11.1 System."

 

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WASHINGTON - Senator Chris Dodd, Chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA) announced today that Joanna McIntosh has joined the association as Executive Vice President for Global Policy and External Affairs.

"Joanna's invaluable leadership talent and government relations expertise will be a major asset for the MPAA and the studios we represent," Dodd said. "With her extensive experience in working with the private sector and government agencies and strong legal background, she has demonstrated the kinds of skills that we believe are needed to help guide the MPAA both here in the United States and around the world. As movie and television content is increasingly enjoyed over the Internet through an exponentially broadening range of services, her experience with supporting communications technologies and platforms will complement the deep pool of talent at the MPAA."

"I look forward to working with so many talented colleagues at the MPAA and the motion picture studios that the association represents," McIntosh said. "It is a tremendous opportunity to be part of an organization that is at the cutting edge of so many important developments involving the growth of creative content and technological innovation."

McIntosh previously served as Vice President of Federal Government Relations at Verizon in the Washington, DC office. She joined Verizon in 2005 after serving as the General Counsel for the 2004 G8 Summit that President Bush hosted in Sea Island, Georgia.

Prior to her work with Verizon, McIntosh was a Director at the Markle Foundation, where she was responsible for developing and implementing the Foundation's program on information technology law and policy. Previously, McIntosh was Vice President of International Relations for AT&T, where she worked with the executive branch, foreign governments and multilateral organizations to promote U.S. investment abroad and reduce foreign regulatory burdens on U.S. companies overseas.

Earlier in her career, McIntosh served as Associate General Counsel at the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative and as Chairman of the USTR's Section 301 Committee. She began her career as an international trade attorney at the law firm of Collier, Shannon and Scott, which is today Kelley, Drye, Collier, Shannon. McIntosh earned her J.D. degree from George Washington University and a B.A. from Rhodes College.

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tf4.pngTransformers: Age of Extinction grossed $81.2 million from a total of 58 territories to take its cume outside of North America up to $659.1 million. A $16.5 million opening weekend in Brazil leads the weekend highlights for the Transformers sequel, along with an $11.9 million debut from Germany and $8.8 million bow in France. The film has grossed $886.2 million worldwide.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes opened in 29 new markets and finished with $61 million from a total of 50 markets over the weekend. The results lift the film above the $100 million overseas mark with a $102.9 million cume. The Apes sequel has grossed $241.8 million worldwide.

How to Train Your Dragon 2 added $13.9 million from 55 market to its overseas haul. The film has now taken a total of $225.5 million outside of North America and a total of $386.1 million globally.

Planes: Fire and Rescue took a $9 million bow from its first 245 overseas territories. The animated film has grossed $27 million worldwide in its first weekend of release.

Step Up All In expanded to seven additional markets overseas, including #2 debuts in Russia ($3.1M) and France ($2.1M). The film is playing in a total of 9 territories and has grossed $9.7 million overseas ahead of its North America premiere.

Maleficent brought in another $8 million from 43 territories, raising its overseas total to $468.8 million. The Disney film is on the cusp of reaching the $700 million global mark with a $697.2 million worldwide cume.

Blended took a $2 million debut from Brazil on an overseas weekend that amounted to $6.7 million for the latest Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore romantic comedy. The film has grossed $59 million outside of North America, with Mexico’s $10 million representing the lion’s share, and $104 million worldwide.

The Fault in Our Stars continues to build overseas after adding $4.6 million from 40 markets to its tally. The drama has grossed a total of $127.9 million overseas and $249.4 million globally.

22 Jump Street took in $3.2 million from 42 territories, bringing its overseas total to $88.3 million. The comedy sequel has grossed $268.8 million worldwide.

Sex Tape rolled out across its first 9 overseas markets, collecting $3 million in the process and raising its global total to $18 million.

Edge of Tomorrow earned $2.3 million from 1,830 screens in 52 markets over the weekend. The Tom Cruise sci-fi vehicle has grossed a total of $261.3 million overseas and $357.9 million worldwide. China remains the top overseas market with a $63.56 million cume.

X-Men: Days of Future Past collected $1.4 million from 20 markets to reach a $507.9 million overseas cume. The superhero sequel has grossed $738.3 million worldwide.

Jersey Boys grossed $1.35 million from 16 markets to take its overseas haul up to $12.2 million. Australia is responsible for nearly half of that figure with a market cume of $5.3 million. The musical directed by Clint Eastwood has grossed $56.6 million worldwide.

Neighbors welcomed another $1.3 million from 30 territories, taking its overseas total up to $105.4 million. The film has grossed $254.4 million globally.

A Million Ways to Die in the West collected another $1 million from 34 territories. The comedy has grossed $41.7 million overseas and $84.4 million worldwide.

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Sunday Update: As was widely expected, Fox's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes held onto first place this weekend with an estimated $36.0 million. The critically acclaimed 3D sci-fi action sequel was down 50 percent from last weekend, which represented a very healthy second weekend hold for a blockbuster level film in the middle of summer. The film's second weekend hold was quite similar to the 49 percent 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes fell when it grossed $27.83 million during its second weekend of release. With a ten-day start of $138.95 million, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is running an impressive 32 percent ahead of the $105.21 million ten-day take of Rise of the Planet of the Apes. This weekend's hold is a strong sign for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes going forward, though the film will also soon be facing more direct competition from the likes of Universal's Lucy, Paramount's Hercules and Disney's Guardians of the Galaxy.

Universal's The Purge: Anarchy was easily the strongest of the weekend's three new wide releases, with a second place estimated take of $28.37 million. The sequel to last year's break-out horror film debuted in line with expectations. However, the film did open 17 percent below the $34.06 million debut of The Purge. The Purge: Anarchy took in $13.0 million on Friday (which included an estimated $2.6 million from Thursday night shows), fell 27 percent on Saturday to gross $9.5 million and is estimated to fall 38 percent on Sunday to take in $5.87 million. That places the film's estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.18 to 1, which actually represents a bit less initial frontloading than the 2.03 to 1 ratio registered by The Purge. The Purge: Anarchy will hope to hold up a bit better than The Purge did, in part from not having to face competition from the likes of Man of Steel and World War Z. The Purge: Anarchy received a solid B rating on CinemaScore. The audience breakdown for the film skewed slightly towards female moviegoers (52 percent) and towards moviegoers under the age of 25 (61 percent).

Planes: Fire and Rescue debuted in third with an estimated $18.0 million. The modestly budgeted computer animated sequel from Disney opened slightly below pre-release expectations and 19 percent below the $22.23 million debut of Planes last summer. While this summer has had a relatively limited amount of choices for family audiences, Planes: Fire and Rescue may have failed to have capitalized from the fairly empty family marketplace due in part to arriving in theatres so soon after its predecessor. Planes: Fire and Rescue opened with $6.29 million on Friday, increased 4 percent on Saturday to take in $6.56 million and is estimated to fall 21.5 percent on Sunday to gross $5.15 million. That gives the film an estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio of 2.86 to 1. Planes: Fire and Rescue received a strong A rating on CinemaScore. The audience breakdown for the film was split evenly between genders and skewed towards moviegoers 25 years and younger (59 percent). Family audiences represented 78 percent of the film's overall audience.

Sony's Sex Tape debuted in fourth with a poorer than expected $15.0 million. The R-rated comedy starring Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel opened a disappointing 52.5 percent softer than the $31.60 million start of 2011's Bad Teacher. Sex Tape appears to have been hurt from both its poor critical reviews and from arriving in the marketplace on the heels of a number of successful comedies over the past few months (The Other Woman, Neighbors, 22 Jump Street and Tammy). Sex Tape opened with $5.7 million on Friday (which included an estimated $1.1 million from Thursday night shows), fell 7 percent on Saturday to gross $5.3 million and is estimated to decline 24.5 percent on Sunday to gross $4.0 million. That places the film's estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.63 to 1. While Sex Tape could be helped out going forward by the lack of new comedies entering the marketplace over the next few weeks, its troubling C+ rating on CinemaScore isn't a good early sign. The audience breakdown for Sex Tape skewed slightly towards female moviegoers (53 percent) and moviegoers 30 years and over (52 percent).

Transformers: Age of Extinction rounded out the weekend's top five with an estimated $10.0 million. The fourth installment of Paramount's blockbuster sci-fi action franchise finally stabilized this weekend, as it was down a solid 39 percent. Transformers: Age of Extinction has grossed $227.16 million through 24 days of release. While that already makes the film one of the year's highest grossing releases thus far domestically, it is also a significant 28 percent softer than the $317.37 million 24-day take of 2011's Transformers: Dark of the Moon.

Warner's Tammy placed in sixth with an estimated $7.61 million. The Melissa McCarthy comedy vehicle was down a solid 39 percent and was likely helped out a bit this weekend by the poorer than expected start of Sex Tape. Tammy has grossed a very solid $71.25 million in 19 days, which already gives the film a current total gross to opening weekend ratio of 3.30 to 1.

On the platform front, IFC Films' Boyhood maintained momentum nicely this weekend with an estimated $1.198 million from 34 locations. That gave the film a strong per-location average of $35,230 for the frame and represented a 209 percent increase over last weekend's five-location start. Boyhood has grossed a strong $1.85 million in ten days of platform release and will expand into additional locations next weekend.

Saturday Update: Universal reports that The Purge: Anarchy hauled in an estimated $13 million on Friday--a healthy start for the sequel, albeit down from the first film's $16.8 million first day last summer (on its way to a $34.1 million weekend). BoxOffice projects Anarchy will go on to earn $26.5 million this weekend. Early word of mouth appears modest with a 70 percent Flixster user score, although that is slightly higher than any other horror pic one day after release this year.

The weekend will ultimately belong to Fox's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, though. The well-received sequel earned another $10.4 million yesterday, down an expected 62 percent from opening day last week. Strong word of mouth should continue to propel the sequel as BoxOffice projects a sophomore frame around $34.5 million and a repeat in first place.

Disney's Planes: Fire and Rescue posted $6.29 million on Friday, giving it a shot at $17 million this weekend. By comparison, the first Planes earned a $22.2 million opening weekend. The sequel's Flixster user score is a soft 65 percent, although the online community is hardly the target audience for this film. With very little in the way animated competition through the remainder of summer, expect this one to follow in its predecessor's footsteps with solid holds.

Sony's Sex Tape grabbed $5.7 million yesterday and is projected to bring in $16.5 million for opening weekend. Unfortunately, that's noticeably down from 2011's previous Cameron Diaz-Jason Segel headliner, Bad Teacher, which earned $31.6 million on opening weekend. The soft debut here can largely be attributed to a satiated comedy market in the wake of successful films this summer like 22 Jump Street, Neighbors, and the recent Tammy. The pic's early Flixster score sits at 48 percent.

Please note: Official Friday estimates for Zach Braff's Wish I Was Here and Millennium Entertainment's Persecuted were not available at the time of publishing.

Check BoxOffice on Sunday morning for official studio estimates.

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Friday Update #2: Sources tell BoxOffice that The Purge: Anarchy and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes could be in a close race for first this weekend based on Friday matinees. Conflicting reports suggest the advantage could swing in Apes' favor relatively fast, though.

 

Meanwhile, Sex Tape and Planes: Fire and Rescue appear headed for their expected opening weekends in the low-to-mid $20 million range.

Friday Update #1: Sources report that The Purge: Anarchy earned $2.6 million on Thursday evening, a generally healthy start for the low-budget thriller but noticeably behind its predecessor's $3.4 million (which ultimately tallied a $34.1 million weekend). This sequel also debuted earlier in the evening (8pm versus 10pm), which further indicates a weekend that could end up around $25 million. That's not bad in the grand scheme of things, though it should make an interesting battle for the runner-up spot behind Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, which is expected to repeat as the number one film this weekend.

 

Contending with the Purge sequel this weekend is Sex Tape, which brought in $1.1 million from 7pm shows last night. By comparison, Tammy took in $1.3 million from Tuesday night shows earlier this month, while Neighbors brought in $2.56 million for its Thursday evening debut in May. An opening in the low-to-mid $20 million range looks likely for Sex Tape.

 

Rounding out the new wide releases, Planes: Fire and Rescue is set to perform on par with its predecessor as it tallied $0.45 million from 7pm shows last night. The first film bowed to a $22.2 million opening weekend last summer.

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