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‘Transformers’ edges out ‘Ice Age’

Bay sequel on the fast track to $600 million

Paramount’s “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” is headed to the $600 million mark at the worldwide box office faster than any film other than “The Dark Knight.”

Official weekend B.O. numbers released on Monday showed the domestic cume for the sequel at $293.4 million through Sunday, the pic’s 12th day in release. Foreign total clocked in at $300.5 million.

The tentpole should cross the $300 million mark in North America by Wednesday.

The “Transformers” sequel remained potent enough in its second weekend to narrowly edge out 20th Century Fox’s “Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs” domestically.

The pics were in a dead heat according to numbers released Sunday, but Monday’s numbers showed “Revenge of the Fallen” coming in with $42.3 million during the Fourth of July holiday weekend to $41.6 million for “Dawn of the Dinosaurs.” That puts the five-day opening cume for the “Ice Age” three-quel at $66.7 million.

Overseas, the rankings were reversed. Opening day and date around the globe on July 1, “Ice Age 3” topped the B.O. chart in grossing a massive $151.7 million, the best debut ever for a toon and the sixth best international opening of all time.

Global opening cume for “Dawn of the Dinosaurs” was $218.4 million.

With the “Transformers” and “Ice Age” sequels lighting up the worldwide box office, midsummer is looking especially strong. Theater traffic isn’t expected to slow much considering that Warner Bros. opens “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” around the globe on July 15.

Last summer, Warner’s “Dark Knight” set the box office on fire, grossing north of $333 million in its first 12 days of domestic play.

“Dark Knight” went on to cume $533.3 million domestically and $486.6 million internationally for a worldwide cume of $1.1 billion.

The second “Transformers” could gross as much as $800 million worldwide, according to box office observers.

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