Dinosaurs ruled the weekend box office with “Jurassic World” from NBCUniversal Inc. bringing in more than $209 million to make it the highest-grossing domestic opening weekend ever.
The fourth installment of Universal Pictures prehistoric creature franchise managed to beat out the $207 million grossed by “The Avengers,” the Marvel superhero movie released in 2012.
It easily bested “The Avengers: Age of Ultron,” the previous high grosser of this summer movie season that brought in $191 million in its opening weekend in May. Both “Avengers” films were released by Walt Disney Co. in Burbank.
“Jurassic World” was co-financed and co-produced by Legendary Entertainment, the Burbank production company. Legendary’s arrangement with Universal will give it a 25 percent cut of the box office receipts, according to Variety, the entertainment industry trade publication.
The dinosaur thriller is the first hit for Legendary since ending a long-time distribution relationship with Warner Bros. Entertainment in 2013 and hooking up with Universal in Universal City.
While Legendary’s low-budget “As Above/So Below” released last fall made money, two recent high-profile releases, “Blackhat” and “Seventh Son,” lost money.
Variety reported in February that Legendary took a $90 million write-down on “Blackhat,” released in January. The prospects for “Seventh Son” were so poor that Legendary took an $85 million write-down on the film prior to its February release.