‘Deadpool 2’ blew up weekend box office competition. Its opening day take of $52 million is the largest ever for an R-rated movie, unseating ‘It’, which made $50.4M on its opening day. On Thursday, it also had the highest preview night ever for an R-rated flick, earning $18.6M. Those diehards that turned out for these early screenings gave it 5-out-of-5 stars, but keep in mind that reaction is skewed because only superfans attend these screenings. That could also account for its “A” CinemaScore. ‘Deadpool 2’ also broke ‘Avengers: Infinity War’‘s record for presales on Atom Tickets.
‘Deadpool 2’ is the widest release ever for an R-rated movie (once again topping ‘It’) and is 20th Century Fox’s widest opening ever, more than ‘How to Train Your Dragon 2’, which is impressive because, once again, this movie is rated R versus an animated family movie.
‘Deadpool 2’ however slowed down a bit on Saturday and Sunday. Early estimates saw ‘Deadpool 2’ opening in the $130-150 million range. Those predictions turned out to be a bit too optimistic. It actually took in $125M. This made ‘Deadpool 2’ the second-highest opening ever for an R-rated movie, behind the first ‘Deadpool’, which was helped by the fact that it hit theaters on a holiday double-whammy weekend (Presidents and Valentines Day). Once again, this put ‘Deadpool 2’ ahead of ‘It’ which made $123M in its opening weekend. These three are the only R-rated films to ever open north of $100M.
Speaking of holidays, 20th Century Fox bumped ‘Deadpool 2’ up from the first weekend in June in hopes of cashing in on next weekend’s Memorial Day holiday. Of course, it couldn’t plant this film’s release squarely on that weekend, because then it would be going head-to-head with ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’. It is believed that over 11 days, ‘Deadpool 2’ will match or possibly exceed ‘Deadpool”s performance over the same span of time.
In week four, ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ made an additional $28.6M. This is a little short of projections, which placed it at roughly $31-32M, but then again, a huge chunk of ‘Avengers’ fans are also ‘Deadpool’ fans, so it makes sense that ‘Deadpool 2”s success meant that ‘Infinity War’ would suffer. But for a month-old movie, $28.6M is great!
Here is the Top Five:
- Deadpool 2 (20th Century Fox) – $125M
- Avengers: Infinity War (Disney) – $28.6M
- Book Club (Paramount) – $12.5M
- Life of the Party (New Line/Warner Brothers) – $7.7M
- Breaking In (Universal) – $6.4M
Paramount’s ‘Book Club’ over-indexed, taking in $12.5M versus the expected $8-9M. Obviously, this film was aided by the fact that it targeted the older female demographic– with more than 50% of its audience being women over 50– which is a rarely served demographic. ‘Book Club’ united a dream team of Jane Fonda, Diane Keaton, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen, with Craig T. Nelson, Andy Garcia, Don Johnson, Ed Begley Jr., Richard Dreyfuss and Alicia Silverstone.
However, it’s Saturday performance was hampered by what is simultaneously the saddest and most hilarious reason ever– the Royal Wedding. Yep, moms and grandmas of America were busy curled up on their couches with a box of Pino Grigio watching CNN’s repeated airing of Prince Harry’s nuptials to American commoner Meagan Markle and didn’t make it out to theaters.
Interestingly, the top two movies were male-targeted superhero flicks, while the bottom three were all female-fronted, female-targeted films.
Next weekend, ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ is being eyed to open between $140-170M over four days. (Once again, it’s Memorial Day weekend, so Monday is added in.) If it performs as expected, it will set a new record for that weekend, besting ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s In’ which launched with $139.8M.
Another, very different science fiction movie is also opening but targeting an alternate audience, the low-budget comedy ‘How to Talk to Girls at Parties’, which stars Elle Fanning and Nicole Kidman. This film is targeted at younger females who may not be interested in ‘Solo’ or superheroes.
Will ‘Solo’ do as well as expected? Check back next week to find out.