June 30, 2014 12:54 pm

‘Transformers’ dominates weekend box office

LOS ANGELES – Transformers: Age of Extinction is ruling the box office.

The fourth installment in filmmaker Michael Bay’s morphing robots series earned $100 million in North America during its opening weekend, making it the biggest debut for a movie this year, according to studio estimates Sunday.

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The blockbuster outperformed Captain America: The Winter Soldier and its $95 million inauguration in April.

Age of Extinction also earned $201.3 million from 37 international territories, specifically making $90 million in China, where it was partially filmed and co-produced by partners like the state-owned China Film Group and the China Movie Channel.

Age of Extinction stars Mark Wahlberg and Nicola Peltz as a human father-daughter duo who aid the shape-shifting robots from the Hasbro toy franchise. Besides the addition of a new human crew, the sequel also introduces the popular Transformers characters based on the likenesses of dinosaurs.

The movie topped the previous entry in the series, Dark of the Moon, which took in $97.9 million during its opening weekend in 2011, but failed to eclipse the $108.9 million debut of the second film, Revenge of the Fallen.

The first three Transformers films starred Shia LaBeouf as a teenager who befriends hulking alien robots Optimus Prime (voiced by Peter Cullen) and Bumblebee. The original 2007 film made $70.5 million and went on to domestically gross $319.2 million.

Age of Extinction was distantly followed at the North American box office by a trio of sophomore efforts: 22 Jump Street in second place with $15.4 million; How To Train Your Dragon 2 in third place with $13.1 million; and Think Like a Man Too in fourth place with $10.4 million.

Made-in-Canada movies X-Men: Days of Future Past and Godzilla added $3.3 million and $1 million respectively to their totals over the weekend.

© The Associated Press, 2014

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