weekend box office

‘Black Panther’ continues to slash the competition and expectations.  Taking in $108 million for the weekend, it has the biggest second weekend ever for a movie released before the summer season (besting last year’s ‘Beauty & The Beast’ which made $90.4M in its sophomore frame) and the second-best second weekend ever, following ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’‘ $149M, and topping both ‘Jurassic World’‘s $106.6M, and ‘The Avengers’‘ $103M.  ‘Black Panther’ has managed to score the highest day totals for a Marvel movie for the past week.  With $520 million globally in its first seven days and close to $400 million domestically, it made more in its first two weeks than any Marvel movie made in its entire run last year, including ‘Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2’ which topped out at $389M.

Online buzz on social media is actually up for this film, 981M from 901M last weekend.  Hashtags on Twitter are at 559K, up from 137k.  Youtube views are at 575K daily, up from 390K last weekend.  According to social media monitors RelishMix “Remember activity over 100k is exceptional.”

There’s a huge margin between ‘Black Panther’ and the #2 movie, which is newcomer ‘Game Night’ from New Line/Warner Brothers, which earned $16.6M.  That’s a fine opening for this film which had a production budget of about $40M, especially following the flops of R-rated comedies ‘The House’ and ‘Fist Fight’ last year.  This opening is in keeping with others like ‘Mike & Dave Need Wedding Dates’ ($16.6M), ‘Office Christmas Party’ ($16.9M) and ‘How To Be Single’ ($17.8M).  All three made over $40M, so it’s likely that ‘Game Night’ will at least make back its budget.  The film has gotten strong reviews (81% on Rotten Tomatoes) and positive audience reaction (“B+” CinemaScore).

Coming in at #4 is Alex Garland’s sci-fi thriller ‘Annihilation’ which earned $10.6M.  This film, which stars Natalie Portman, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Gina Rodriguez and Tessa Thompson, has gotten strong reviews, with 87% on Rotten Tomatoes but the audience reaction was a fairly awful “C” CinemaScore.  The film most are comparing ‘Annihilation’ to is ‘Arrival’.  (In other words, it’s slow as hell.)  But unlike that film, which carried a little more emotional weight, it doesn’t look like Garland’s adaptation of Jeff VanderMeer’s novel is going to cross over.  Paramount sensed that audiences wouldn’t embrace ‘Annihilation’ and chose to only release it in theaters in the U.S., Canada, and China.  It will go straight to Netflix everywhere else.  There’s also the matter of the white washing scandal that probably didn’t help.  In the original book, Portman’s character is of Asian descent and Leigh’s is Native American.  But it’s not as though the film lack’s diversity.  In addition to Rodriguez and Thompson, the cast also includes Benedict Wong, Oscar Isaac, Sonoya Mizuno and David Gyasi.

Here is the Top Five:

  1. Black Panther (Disney) – $108M
  2. Game Night (New Line/Warner Brothers) – $16.6M
  3. Peter Rabbit (SONY) – $12.1M
  4. Annihilation (Paramount) – $10.6M
  5. Fifty Shades Freed (Universal) -$6.9M

Next week two really strong contenders are opening– the highly anticipated Jennifer Lawrence spy thriller ‘Red Sparrow’ and ‘Death Wish’ directed by Eli Roth and starring Bruce Willis.  ‘Red Sparrow’ actually has a chance to take #1 from ‘Black Panther’, which will be in its third weekend by that point.  Not only is Lawrence a strong draw, but this film re-teams her with director Francis Lawrence who directed the last three ‘Hunger Games’ movies.

Check back to see how things pan out!

Source: Deadline