The PAW Patrol franchise proved its might at the box office this weekend, as The Mighty Movie got its paws on $23 million from nearly 4,000 theaters — enough to beat out a trio of fellow newcomers that saw mixed results. The film also earned $23 million overseas, so it’s off to anything but a “ruff” start.
PAW Patrol: The Mighty Movie cost $30 million — a fraction of the cost of a typical Pixar or Illumination movie — so it’s on its way toward turning a profit, and besides, that movie is all about selling toys and other consumer products. Since 2014, PAW Patrol has earned $14 billion in global retail sales, which are once again expected to be strong this holiday season.
On the encouraging side of this weekend’s box office ledger was Saw X, which finished in second place with $18 million — not enough to set a franchise record, which belongs to 2006’s Saw III with $33 million, but still solid for the 10th installment in a nearly 20-year-old series. The film reportedly cost just $13 million, so it is expected to turn a profit, unlike the previous entry, a spinoff attempt titled Spiral that proved to be much ado about nothing.
In third place was Gareth Edwards‘ sci-fi movie The Creator starring John David Washington. The AI-themed film cost $80 million — it looks twice as expensive — but it grossed just $14 million, so it’ll hope to recoup its budget overseas, where it opened to $18.2 million. The film has yet to open in China, Japan, and Korea, where it expected to perform well.
New Line’s horror sequel The Nun II finished in fourth place, adding $4.6 million this weekend and bringing its domestic cume to $76.7 million, and $231 million worldwide, where the first film grossed $366 million. Despite that drop, The Nun II will be a profit center for Warner Bros. Discovery, as it cost just $38 million to produce.
Meanwhile, Sony’s GameStop movie Dumb Money grossed just $3.5 million in wide release following two weeks in limited release. Yes, the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike likely disproportionately affected this star-studded movie as opposed to, say, Saw X, and I’m sure that the weather in New York City didn’t help, especially seeing this movie appeals directly to those involved with the financial markets, but it’s clear that this story arrived in theaters far too soon, and wasn’t funny enough to be sold as a comedy aimed at young people, nor was it dramatic enough to be sold as a drama for adults. Instead, it got caught in between and paid the price.
Thus far, Dumb Money has grossed $7.3 million on a $30 million budget, plus marketing costs, so it’ll likely lose money for Sony, but not a lot of money like blockbusters such as The Flash or Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny.
Next weekend brings The Exorcist: Believer as well as the limited release of Martin Scorsese’s crime epic Killers of the Flower Moon, but don’t expect another blockbuster box office weekend until Taylor Swift‘s Eras Tour concert film hits theaters on Oct. 13.