'Lucy' thrills at North American box office

Actress Scarlett Johansson arrives at the UK premiere of "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" in London in a March 20, 2014 file photo. Director Luc Besson's sci-fi thriller Lucy, about a woman turned superhuman by using 100 per cent of her bra
Actress Scarlett Johansson arrives at the UK premiere of "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" in London in a March 20, 2014 file photo. Director Luc Besson's sci-fi thriller Lucy, about a woman turned superhuman by using 100 per cent of her brain, debuted at the top of the North American box office, industry figures showed on Monday. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Director Luc Besson's sci-fi thriller Lucy, about a woman turned superhuman by using 100 per cent of her brain, debuted at the top of the North American box office, industry figures showed on Monday.

The film - starring Scarlett Johansson in the title role - raked in US$43.9 million (S$54.5 million), box office tracker Exhibitor Relations said.

It beat out another newcomer, big budget action flick Hercules starring Dwayne "the Rock" Johnson, which muscled its way to second place with US$29.8 million.

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes, the latest installment in the sci-fi series about humans and chimps clashing to survive, brought in US$16.8 million, dropping to third place in its third week out.

Horror-thriller sequel The Purge: Anarchy scared up US$10.5 million, landing in the fourth spot.

Meanwhile Planes: Fire & Rescue, the Disney computer-animated tale of talking aircraft working to fight blazes and help save a national park, raked in US$9.5 million for fifth place.

In sixth position with just over US$6 million was comedy Sex Tape, starring Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel as two parents trying to keep their homemade sex tape off the Internet.

Blockbuster sequel Transformers: Age Of Extinction followed with US$4.7 million in ticket sales. It has earned US$236.4 million during its five-week run in theaters.

Romantic comedy And So It Goes, starring Michael Douglas as a self-centered realtor whose life is interrupted by a granddaughter he never knew he had, and Diane Keaton as his neighbour, landed in eighth with US$4.6 million.

Sliding into ninth was comic road trip romp Tammy, starring Melissa McCarthy, which brought in over US$3.4 million.

And rounding out the box office top 10 with US$2.6 million was spy thriller A Most Wanted Man, starring the late Philip Seymour Hoffman in one of his last performances.