Shia LaBeouf is the new King of the Fourth of July.
Transformers: Dark of the Moon grossed $116.4 million over the four-day holiday weekend, and set an Independence Day record with a $97.5 million Friday-Sunday take.
As for who's the queen of the Fourth?
Well, it ain't Selena Gomez.
Gomez's Monte Carlo fizzled, with the reportedly $20 million teen/tween comedy failing to come up with even half that much.
It is Gomez's second straight box-office disappointment after Ramona and Beezus.
Dark of the Moon, meanwhile, is LaBeouf's seventh straight live-action No. 1 film.
After just six-plus days, the Megan Fox-free sequel is already the year's fourth-biggest domestic hit, with $181.1 million. Worldwide, it's at $379 million.
Per Exhibitor Relations, Dark of the Moon did about 60 percent of its domestic business, and 70 percent of its international box office in 3-D theaters. Those are some of the best 3-D stats since Avatar. (From the department of Not a Coincidence comes this item: Dark of the Moon was shot by the same crew that shot Avatar.)
The only black mark on Dark of the Moon's performance is that its predecessor was tens of millions bigger.
Dark of the Moon ran 40 percent below Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen on opening day, and, while it closed the gap over the weekend, it couldn't catch the 2009 film.
But LaBeouf costar (and Fox replacement) Rosie Huntington-Whiteley will take her queen's crown anyway.
Elsewhere, Tom Hanks' and Julia Roberts' Larry Crowne opened a tad smaller than Dark of the Moon. But all things considered, the low-key middle-age comedy did all right for a low-key middle-age comedy, making back half its reputed $30 million budget. Its performance also marked a step up from Hanks' and Roberts' last team-up, the far more expensive Charlie Wilson's War.
The broken Green Lantern broke $100 million domestically—a feat that took the equally expensive Dark of the Moon all of four full days to accomplish. More impressively, the $32.5 million Bridesmaids topped $150 million.
A trio of summer hits aged out of the Top 10: The Hangover Part II, which went out as the year's No. 1 movie (for now); Johnny Depp's Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, which topped $1 billion worldwide; and, X-Men: First Class, which, even while being the smallest-grossing X-Men sequel, managed to stay in the neighborhood of its big brothers.
Here's a revised look at the top-grossing films, per Friday-Sunday numbers as compiled by Exhibitor Relations. Estimated grosses for the four-day holiday weekend are also included:
- Transformers: Dark of the Moon, $97.5 million ($116.4 million Friday-Monday)
- Cars 2, $26.2 million ($32.1 million Friday-Monday)
- Bad Teacher, $14.5 million ($17.6 million Friday-Monday)
- Larry Crowne, $13 million ($15.7 million Friday-Monday)
- Super 8, $7.8 million ($9.5 million Friday-Monday)
- Monte Carlo, $7.4 million ($8.8 million Friday-Monday)
- Green Lantern, $6.5 million ($8 million Friday-Monday)
- Mr. Popper's Penguins, $5.5 million ($6.9 million Friday-Monday)
- Bridesmaids, $3.6 million ($4.4 million Friday-Monday)
- Midnight in Paris, $3.4 million (Friday-Monday number not known)
(Originally published July 3, 2011, at 11:38 a.m. PT)