Another Disney entry to the box office, "The BFG" did not really get the reception it was expecting on Friday and ended up earning $7 million instead. The follow-up to "Finding Nemo" should end the four-day holiday with another $50.5 million in receipts.
But "Tarzan" carries a massive $180 million budget, so the film will have to perform strongly in global markets to make a profit.
Box Office Mojo reports that Finding Dory dropped just 42.6% this weekend. The film is having a slow overseas rollout, opening throughout Europe over the course of the month and debuting in China on July 19.
Helmed by James DeMonaco, The Purge: Election Year earned a B+, a good grade for a horror film.
"The BFG", starring Mark Rylance and Ruby Barnhill, opened in Australia and Russian Federation this weekend as the start of a gradual rollout into major markets in coming weeks. It led the box office on Friday with $14.5 million, edging "Tarzan" with $14 million and "Dory" with $13.4 million.
"The magic of the Blumhouse model is that it allows us to be subversive and think outside the box when it comes to interesting audiences", said Nick Carpou, Universal's domestic distribution chief.
With the three newcomers crowding in at the top, Independence Day: Resurgence found itself falling three spots to #5 with $16.5 million.
"It's frustrating when there's a disconnect between the critical response, the consumer response and ultimately the box office". The action-comedy about a spy who recruits a high school buddy for a caper stars Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Kevin Hart.
The last time a Spielberg movie opened over the July fourth weekend was back in 2005 with War of the Worlds, launching with a respectable $64 million it went on to make $234 million in the U.S. alone.
Free State of Jones was down to #8 in its second weekend with $4.1 million. The $180 million jungle adventure swung to a $45.6 million total over its first four days, as it played pretty evenly across gender demographics and brought out an older audience (55% were over the age of 35). Now You See Me 2 rounded off the top ten; down three places from last week's number seven. That puts it in range to start turning profits, but the margins are likely to be thin. Still, since Universal had the record-breaking Jurassic World sharing the top of the Independence Day weekend charts previous year, this is still a step down by comparison.
Elsewhere, Universal's The Secret Life of Pets pulls in an estimated $15.2 million from select worldwide territories ahead of its July 8 domestic bow.