Coming a week behind Spider-Man: Homecoming, War for the Planet of the Apes is aiming to leave its own unique mark on the July 2017 box office. The third installment of 20th Century Fox’s Planet of the Apes reboot series promises to provide a fitting conclusion to Caesar’s arc, while also paving the way for a new era of Apes history. War for the Planet of the Apes looks like it will be another critical smash hit judging by early reviews, and commercially, the film is currently predicted to open domestically somewhere between $55-$65 million.
While that range may not seem like a lot compared to what other summer blockbusters have been making their opening weekends, for a Planet of the Apes movie, this is solid territory. 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes opened at $54.8 million domestically, while 2014’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes took in $72.6 million domestically in its first weekend, so the third installment may rest comfortably in the middle. Variety also noted that since Dawn of the Planet of the Apes performed well internationally, it seems likely that the third installment will be similarly successful.
With two months of the 2017 summer movie season behind us, this has been a mixed period for established franchises, with sequels like Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales and Transformers: The Last Knight underperforming financially in the United States. Fortunately for director Matt Reeves and everyone else involved on the production, it appears that War for the Planet of the Apes will avoid such a fate. With tracking in a comfortable range and most critics loving the third Apes reboot, 20th Century Fox need not worry about this trilogy fizzling out with its last entry. Of course, along with folks seeing Spider-Man: Homecoming a little later, War for the Planet of the Apes will also face competition later in July from PG-13 fare like Dunkirk and Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, so if you’re a fan of the Apes series, you should still head to the theater to show your support.
Set two years after Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, War for the Planet of the Apes will follow the continuing conflict between the super-intelligent apes, led by Caesar, and the surviving human forces, led by Woody Harrelson Colonel McCullough. With both sides suffering heavy losses, Caesar will wrestle with his darker instincts and begin a new journey to avenge his kind. The outcome of this war will determine which side becomes the dominant species on Earth.
War for the Planet of the Apes opens in theaters on July 14, and you can check out our review of the movie as the wait for its release continues.