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'Rise of the Planet of the Apes' climbs to No. 1 with $54M opening

A scene from the 2011 film 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes.' (Courtesy of Chernin Entertainment and Twentieth Century Fox)

August 7, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
"Rise of the Planet of the Apes" dominated the box office in its opening weekend.

The film starring James Franco took in $54 million. That was about $15 million to $20 million more than analysts expected for the "Apes" prequel, though well below the $68.5 million opening of Tim Burton's "Planet of the Apes" remake a decade ago.

"The Smurfs" took the second spot at the box office with $21 million.

Last week's No. 1 movie, "Cowboys & Aliens," slipped to third place with $15.8 million.

"The Change-Up" debuted in fourth place with $13.5 million and "Captain America: The First Avenger" rounded out the top five with $13 million dollars.

The top 10 movies of the weekend were:

1. "Rise of the Planet of the Apes," $54 million ($23.4 million international).
2. "The Smurfs," $21 million ($45.2 million international).
3. "Cowboys & Aliens," $15.8 million.
4. "The Change-Up," $13.5 million.
5. "Captain America: The First Avenger," $13 million ($27.5 million international).
6. "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2," $12.2 million ($61.8 million international).
7. "Crazy, Stupid, Love," $12.1 million.
8. "Friends with Benefits," $4.7 million.
9. "Horrible Bosses," $4.6 million ($7.7 million international).
10. "Transformers: Dark of the Moon," $3 million ($17.5 million international).

The Associated Press contributed to this report.