From ew, In a close race that saw each of the top three films swap places between Friday and Sunday, animated smashDespicable Me 2 once again won the weekend at the box office. The $76 million family film from Universal and Illumination Entertainment fell 46 percent from its debut weekend to $44.8 million, pushing its total all the way to $229.2 million after only 12 days.
Despicable Me 2 has easily asserted its dominance over Disney’s Monsters University in the last two weekends. Though Monsters has been in theaters twice as long (it opened June 21), its $237.8 million domestic total is only $8.6 million more than Despicable Me 2. Universal’s minion-filled comedy should easily overtake its rival release sometime this week. Worldwide, Despicable Me is about to surpass Monsters University as well, as the films have earned $472.4 million and $474.2 million, respectively.
In second place, Adam Sandler’s first-ever sequel, Grown Ups 2, opened to a great $42.5 million. The $80 million Sony comedy started off slightly better than its 2010 predecessor, Grown Ups, which debuted with $40.5 million on the way to a $162 million domestic finish. If estimates hold up, Grown Ups 2 will stand as Sandler’s second-best opening ever behind 2005′s The Longest Yard, which debuted to $47.6 million.
Sandler has proven himself to be one of the most consistent box office draws in Hollywood over the last 15 years, during which time he has accrued 12 live-action hits that grossed more than $100 million, as well as the animated winner Hotel Transylvania, which topped out at $148.3 million. But after back-to-back live-action misfires with 2011′s Jack & Jill ($74.2 million) and 2012′s That’s My Boy ($36.9 million), many questioned whether Sandler’s brand of comedy was still viable at the box office. Grown Ups 2‘s impressive debut should mitigate those concerns — and put the comedy on track to become Sandler’s 14th $100 million movie.
According to Sony, audiences for Grown Ups 2 were 53 percent female (this follows White House Down andWorld War Z — two other films with unexpectedly majority-female audiences), and 54 percent below the age of 25. Crowds surveyed by CinemaScore issued the film a ho-hum “B” grade, and critics were largely dismissive.