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Guardians tops US and UK box office

Chris Pratt's Guardians Of The Galaxy has taken the top spot at both the US and UK box offices.

Marvel Studios' cosmic romp - starring Chris, Zoe Saldana and Dave Bautista as members of an intergalactic band of rebels - earned 94 million US dollars (£55.8 million) in its debut weekend in America.

Ahead of its Friday debut, box office analysts initially projected that the comic book adaptation would earn between 60 million and 75 million dollars.

The out-of-this-world launch gives Guardians the biggest opening for a film released in the traditionally low-key month of August, a record previously held by the 69.2 (£41.1 million) million dollar debut of 2007's The Bourne Ultimatum.

It also makes Guardians - written and directed by Slither filmmaker James Gunn - the third largest opening of 2014, coming behind the 95 million (£56.4 million) inauguration of Captain America: The Winter Soldier in April and the 100 million (£59.4 million) launch of Transformers: Age Of Extinction in June.

The movie hauled in an additional 66.4 million dollars (£39.4 million) from 42 international territories, including Russia, Mexico, Brazil, South Korea and the UK, making it the first place film overseas.

In the UK, it collected a studio estimate of £6.4 million within its opening four days. The film has the honour of having one of the biggest ever original Marvel openings in the UK, taking more in its first four days than the first instalments of Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and X-Men.

The studio announced at Comic-Con in San Diego last month that a sequel is already set for release in 2017.

In a distant second place at the US box office, Lucy, starring Scarlett Johansson as a woman with mind-bending powers, nabbed 18.3 million (£10.8 million) in its second weekend, bringing the Universal Pictures release's total across the pond to 80 million (£47.5 million).

Meanwhile, Universal's James Brown biopic Get On Up, featuring Chadwick Boseman as the soulful singer, opened in third place with 14 million (£8.3 million).

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