LOS ANGELES - Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles romped to the top of the US box office, dethroning Guardians of the Galaxy in their first weekend in theaters, industry figures showed Sunday.
The fighting turtles, on a mission to save New York from the clutches of evil-doers, made off with US$65 million (S$81.3 million) in receipts, industry tracker Exhibitor Relations said.
Starring Megan Fox, the latest reboot of the Ninja Turtle franchise handily overtook Guardians of the Galaxy, which dropped to number two with a US$41.5 million gross following a stellar $94 million debut the weekend before.
Animals and extra-terrestrial superheros got little competition, with tornado disaster flick Into the Storm a distant third with an US$18 million take at the box office its first weekend out.
Fourth was another newcomer, The Hundred Foot Journey, a romantic comedy with Helen Mirren and Om Puri as culture-clashing restaurateurs. It made US$11.1 million.
French action film Lucy, starring Scarlett Johansson as a drug mule with telekinetic powers, was fifth with US$9.3 million in its third week in theaters.
It came in ahead of dance film Step Up All In, the fifth in a series, this one featuring struggling dancers in a televised contest in Las Vegas. It grossed US$6.5 million its first week in theaters.
Seventh place with US$5.7 went to Hercules, starring Dwayne "the Rock" Johnson.
Get On Up, a biopic about US soul singer James Brown, dropped to eighth place from third, bringing in US$5 million its second weekend out.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the critically praised latest installment in the sci-fi film series about apes co-existing with humans, drew US$4.4 million for ninth place.
Disney's Planes: Fire & Rescue, the computer-animated movie about a talking plane that helps firefighters save a national park, made US$2.4 million, leaving it in tenth place.