Los Angeles (ANTARA News/Xinhua-OANA) - "Despicable Me 2" succeeded in finishing as the most popular film in North America over the Independence Day weekend as it beat up Johnny Depp`s vehicle "The Lone Ranger" with ease and style.

The latest sequel to Universal`s iconic animated comedy film Despicable Me is estimated to rake in a whopping 82.5 million U.S. dollars worth of tickets from 3,957 theaters in North America over the Friday-Sunday period, claiming No. 1 place in the box office derby.

The 3-D, PG-rated cartoon, featuring voices from Steve Carell, Kristen Wiig, Miranda Cosgrove and made on a reasonable 76 million- dollar budget, is poised to bag 142.1 million dollars in ticket sales over the five-day holiday beginning Wednesday.

Both critics and audiences liked the animated feature film. It received 75 percent approval rating on the review aggregator website Rottentomatoes.com and a coveted "A" CinemaScore rating from moviegoers.

"The Lone Ranger," starring Johnny Depp, however, merely roped in 29.4 million dollars worth of tickets from 3,904 locations over the weekend, finishing in a distant second.

The Disney Western, which cost at least 250 million dollars to make, opened disastrously Wednesday and is on track to become one of the year`s biggest flops.

Disney`s last flop was "John Carter." The 250 million-dollar sci-fi adventure film only managed just 73 million dollars worth of tickets in North America in 2012.

Since opening Wednesday,"The Long Ranger" is projected to take in 48.9 million dollars in five days. It merely garnered a 24 percent approval rating from Rottentomatoes.com. Filmgoers assigned it a "B+" average CinemaScore.

The Melissa McCarthy FBI comedy film "The Heat" came third with 25 million dollars in ticket sales, followed by "Monsters University" which rolled up 19.6 million dollars.

Rounding out the 10 most popular films in North America this weekend were "World War Z" (18.2 million U.S. dollars), "White House Down" (13.5 million), "Man of Steel" (11.4 million), "Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain" (10.1 million), "This is the End" (5.8 million), and "Now You See Me" (2.8 million).

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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