Unfortunately, these next two weeks in between new superhero movies are going to be disappointing, with lower-profile new releases and more interest falling on prestigious awards films expanding after their platform releases.
This Past Weekend
Warner Bros’ Black Adam, starring Dwayne Johnson, was always pegged to be #1 for a second weekend in a row, and sure enough, it won the weekend with $27.7 million, down 59% from its opening weekend. Johnson’s dream project has already grossed $111.1 domestically and $250 million globally with another $39 million grossed internationally this weekend.
The Julia Roberts and George Clooney rom-com Ticket to Paradise held quite well in its second weekend, remaining in second place with $10 million, off just 39% from its own opening weekend with $33.7 million grossed so far.
Lionsgate released the exorcism horror flick Prey for the Devil into 2,980 theaters this weekend, hoping to take advantage of the pre-Halloween weekend. Being the fourth horror movie released in the past month, it probably didn’t stand much of a chance, earning just $660,000 in Thursday previews and $2.8 million on Friday before clinching $7 million for the weekend.
Lionsgate (maybe wisely) didn’t screen the movie in advance for critics, but those critics that did shell out their own money to see the movie themselves, were not kind, with it scoring a dismal 20% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Audiences didn’t respond much better with the movie receiving a “C+” from the audience-polling, CinemaScore.
Fourth and fifth place were taken by returning horror films, Paramount’s Smile and Universal’s Halloween Ends, with $5 million (down 40%) and $3.8 million (down 52%), respectively. “Smile” is outpacing “Halloween” by $92.4 million to the latter’s $60.3 million, though both are already profitable based on their lower production costs.
Sony’s “Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile” dropped to sixth place with $2.8 million (-33%) and $32.6 million grossed, so far.
After a couple of weekends in limited and moderate release, U.A. Releasing and Focus Features expanded their respective films Till and TÁR nationwide, with the former biopic expanding into twice as many theaters as the latter.
Directed by Chinonye Chukwu (Clemency) and starring Danielle Deadwyler, Till brought in $2.8 million over the weekend in 2,058 theaters or $1,365 per theater with $3.6 million grossed, so far.
The breakout hit indie horror flick, Terrifier 2, took eighth place with another $1.8 million after nearly doubling its theaters on Friday. Although that was almost exactly the same amount it made last weekend, it will be streaming on Screambox starting on Halloween, so we’ll have to see how well it holds up next weekend, having grossed $7.6 million so far.
Although TÁR was written and directed by Todd Field (Little Children) and starred Cate Blanchett, that didn’t help it much, as Focus Features expanded the movie into 1,087 theaters, where it grossed just over a million with a $2.5 million domestic gross. Although that might be enough for the fictional biopic to get into the top ten, there’s a “Coldplay” live concert event that has yet to report its weekend box office that could bump it.
Roadside Attractions decided to release the timely abortion biopic, Call Jane, starring Elizabeth Banks, into 1,070 theaters on Friday, but it only made $241,000 or $225 per theater.
Focus also released James Gray’s semi-autobiographical drama, Armageddon Time, starring newcomer Banks Repeta, Jaylin Webb (who also plays Emmett Till in Till), Anne Hathaway, Jeremy Strong, and Anthony Hopkins, into six theaters in select cities Friday. That brought in $72,000 or $16,000 per-theater, not a great start for a movie that’s expected to expand nationwide on Friday.
On Friday, Ruben Östlund’s Triangle of Sadness expanded into 610 theaters, where it made roughly $550,000 to take 11th place with $2.3 million grossed so far.
In its second weekend of limited release, Martin McDonagh’s The Banshees of Inisherin, moved up to twelfth place with $540,000 and $791,000 grossed so far. It, too, will expand nationwide on Friday.
|Rank||Entry||Distributor||Revenue||Theater Count||Total Revenue|
|1||Black Adam||Warner Bros.||$27,472,140||4,402||$110,910,807|
|2||Ticket to Paradise||Universal||$9,852,430||3,692||$33,584,000|
|3||Prey for the Devil||Lionsgate||$7,185,126||2,980||$7,185,126|
|7||Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile||Sony Pictures||$2,741,100||3,135||$32,476,333|
|8||Terrifier 2||Iconic Releasing||$1,900,850||1,550||$7,735,150|
|9||The Woman King||Sony Pictures||$1,127,527||1,446||$64,601,767|
There were three new wide releases this weekend last year, although the top three mostly remained the same, as Denis Villeneuve’s Dune would bring in $22.6 million its second weekend, down 58%, for a running domestic total of $76.3 million. No Time to Die and Halloween Kills swapped places as the final Daniel Craig Bond movie took second place with $11.5 million (-34%) and the middle chapter of David Gordon Green’s “Halloween” trilogy came in third with $10.2 million (-45%). By this point, No Time to Die had grossed $137 million, while Kills was at $87.4 million, including Halloween Sunday.
Apropos to this week’s newest anime release, FUNimation released My Hero Academia: World Heroes’ Mission into 1,581 theaters, where it grossed $8.2 million for a fourth place opening.
Venom: Let There Be Carnage took fifth place with $7.9 million (down 34%) as it edged its way closer to $200 million with $192.5 million.
Two horror films were released in this pre-Halloween weekend, and they may have cannibalized each other’s business, based on their low placement in the top ten.
Focus Features opened Edgar Wright’s anticipated horror flick, Last Night in Soho, starring Thomasin McKenzie and Anya-Taylor Joy, in 3,016 theaters, where it pulled in $5.8 million, while Searchlight Studios released Scott Cooper’s Antlers, produced by Guillermo del Toro, into 200 fewer theaters, and that opened just below Soho with $5.6 million. For much of 2022, those amounts would be good enough for a top five opening, but last year, they ended up opening in sixth and seventh place, respectively.
Searchlight Studios expanded Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch into 788 theaters, and it just cracked the top ten at #9 with just under $4 million.
It’s going to be another light weekend, since there’s only one new wide release, giving Dwayne Johnson’s Black Adam a shot at a third weekend at #1.
You might be surprised that Crunchyroll’s anime, One Piece Film Red, is the 15th feature film in that series, and you might also be surprised that it’s grossed $144 million worldwide before finally getting a nationwide North American release into an unspecified number of theaters. Theatrical anime releases can be hard to gauge, because anime fans are a demographic that can be hard to track. As you can see above, a My Hero Academia feature was released last year into just under 1,600 theaters, although Crunchyroll (which FUNimation merged with earlier this year) seems to have a much stronger distribution presence as seen by the $21.1 million opening (in 3018 theaters) for Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero this past August.
Without having a theater count for One Piece Film Red, it’s hard to project how well it might do, but as of now, it seems like it will open in second place to Black Adam with $11 to 12 million.
Focus will expand James Gray’s Armageddon Time nationwide into roughly 800 theaters on Friday, where it probably can make around $2 million based on its star power alone, and the generally positive reviews. (Below the Line critic J. Don Birnam gave the movie an A- in his own review.)
Also expanding nationwide this weekend is Martin McDonagh’s The Banshees of Inisherin, although it’s probably going to be in fewer theaters than Armageddon Time. It should still be able to break into the top ten with around $2 million.
XYZ Films gets into the distribution biz this week, releasing Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead’s bizarro genre film, Something in the Dirt, into select theaters. The movie has confounded viewers since it premiered at Sundance, though the duo behind The Endless have gained interest from their Marvel Studios TV work on Moon Knight and next year’s second season of Loki. (Look for my interview with Benson and Moorhead very soon.)
Edward Douglas has been writing about the box office for 21 years at places like ComingSoon.net, The Tracking Board, and many others, but mostly under the banner of “The Weekend Warrior.” He’s also a film critic with bylines at Film Journal, The New York Daily News, Den of Geek, and other places.