‘The Divergent Series: Allegiant’ got off to a strong start.  The third ‘Divergent’ film was #1 at the box office on Friday, but once Saturday and Sunday rolled around, and matinees factored in, Disney’s ‘Zootopia’ took the weekend for a third time, crossing the $200 million threshold, one week faster than powerhouse ‘Frozen’ which took four weeks to hit that benchmark.

Some are questioning Lionsgate’s decision to split the third and final ‘Divergent’ book into two films.  Rhetorically of course, since obviously two movies equals twice the income (hopefully), but considering the ‘Allegiant’ book is exactly one page longer than ‘Insurgent’, this decision may not have been the best.  ‘Divergent’ has never crossed over the way Lionsgate’s other YA franchise, ‘The Hunger Games’ did and even in that case, the last two movies fell short of expectation at the box office.

‘The Divergent Series: Allegiant’ marks the lowest opening of the three films so far, with less than $30 million in its first weekend, down 44% from last year’s ‘Insurgent’.  To add insult to injury, audience reaction has been significantly less enthusiastic, with it earning a B CinemaScore, while the first two got an A and A-.  Of those polled, only 51% of attendees said they would recommend ‘Allegiant’ to other potential film-goers.

Unfortunately, the prior films had a comfy niche in March.  What Lionsgate may not have anticipated is the rapid expansion of the “summer movie season” further into spring (and fall).  Next week sees the release of ‘Batman V Superman’ which will likely hammer the nail into ‘Allegiant”s coffin.

Here are the numbers:

  • Zootopia (Disney) – $38M
  • The Divergent Series: Allegiant (Lionsgate) – $29M
  • Miracles From Heaven (TriStar) – $15M
  • 10 Cloverfield Lane (Paramount) – $12.5M
  • Deadpool (20th Century Fox) – $8M

‘Batman V Superman’ has already racked up approximately $25M in pre-sales, better than ‘Deadpool’ and of course that doesn’t take into account day-of sales.  The superhero clash is predicted to make around $140 million.

But the DC super heroes may face some stiff competition from ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2’.  Okay, not really, but it IS opening the same weekend.  Good luck!

Check back to see how things pan out!

Source: Deadline