‘Peculiar Children’ from Burton hands box-office win to Fox

“Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children,” director Tim Burton’s film based on a popular children’s book, led the North American box office in its weekend debut.

The 20th Century Fox film opened with weekend sales of $28.5 million in the U.S. and Canada, ComScore Inc. estimated Sunday in an emailed statement. “Deepwater Horizon,” the new movie about the Gulf of Mexico oil spill from Lions Gate Entertainment Corp., placed second and the Relativity Studios comedy “Masterminds” opened at the No. 6 spot.

Burton’s creepy take on the novel by Ransom Riggs gives the film division of 21st Century Fox Inc. its first win in about four months after three summer sequels films fell short of the company’s expectations. The company’s upcoming releases include Oscar hopeful “The Birth of a Nation” and sequels to “Planet of the Apes” and “Kingsman.”

Eva Green plays Miss Alma LeFay Peregrine, who runs a home for youngsters who have special powers. Judi Dench and Samuel L. Jackson also feature in the mystery-science fiction tale. The movie cost $110 million to make, according to Imdb.com, and had been estimated to collect $30 million in its debut, according to analysts at BoxOfficePro.com. It received 63 percent positive reviews at aggregator Rottentomatoes.com.

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“Deepwater Horizon” collected an estimated $20.6 million. The movie, made for $118 million, features Mark Wahlberg as an oil rig worker during the BP Plc oil disaster. Gitesh Pandya, editor at Box Office Guru, predicted a debut of $19 million.

The movie isn’t an “accurate portrayal of the events that led to the accident, our people, or the character of our company,” BP said in a statement.

Bank-heist comedy “Masterminds” features Zach Galifianakis and Kristen Wiig. The film’s release was delayed by the bankruptcy of distributor Relativity and a court battle against Netflix Inc. over streaming rights. The movie collected $6.6 million on its opening weekend, ComScore said. Hollywood Stock Exchange had anticipated weekend sales of $6.9 million.