This week, a big family film dominated the box office. Meanwhile, other films continued to have a stronghold. A franchise may have officially died. Last, a genre film attracted a small audience but a respectable one. Let’s dive into the top 5 of the weekend.
First, Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch walked into the weekend likely to win the box office and took it by storm. The latest adaptation received middling reviews but held off the crowd. In fact, it took home a lot of money, earning $66 million for the weekend. For Illumination, the opening is surprisingly one of the weakest in the studio’s history. This is $4 million less than The Lorax but that movie came out six years ago when tickets were a little cheaper. Every Despicable Me film other than the original made more than The Grinch and The Secret Life of Pets made way more. The Grinch will break $100 million for sure, meaning it will cover its budget, but it honestly might fall short of expectations when it was originally greenlit.
Second, Bohemian Rhapsody had an excellent sophomore weekend. It dropped less than 40%, taking in $30.8 Million. It cracks $100 million overall, and the Rami Malek led film appears to have legs. The negative feedback has not messed up the picture’s popular appeal. In fact, Bohemian Rhapsody actually moved into the “Fresh” category on Rotten Tomatoes after an initial negativity about the film. Potentially the negative reviews have reinforced the positive response as expectations were lowered. Whatever the case, fans continue to eat it up, and Malek can now add that he led a genuine hit to his Oscar resume.
In third place, the newcomer Overlord snatched third place for the weekend. The genre film, a hybrid of action, violence, and horror, clearly served as counterprogramming to the rest of the weekend. Jokingly referred to as “Call of Duty – Nazis Zombies: The Movie,” it clearly found its audience. While it did not set the world on fire, a $10.1 million start is huge for the film. With only a $38 million budget and a limited marketing campaign, it could easily turn a profit in theaters before becoming a fan-favorite on Blu-Ray.
Next up is The Nutcracker and the Four Realms from Disney. This one continues to drop, falling to $9.6 Million, and has no chance to make up its $120 million budget. While a holiday release might have helped, Disney seemed like they wanted to drop this one in the slow season to get some money going before Ralph Breaks the Internet can break the box office open. However, it still underperformed and will be a huge loss for the House of Mouse.
Finally, the Top 5 is rounded out by The Girl in the Spider’s Web, which earned $8.015 Million. What a total mess. The last film in the franchise, The Girl in the Dragon Tattoo made $102 Million on a $90 million budget and was deemed too expensive to continue. However, it received 5 Oscar nominations, critical acclaim, and continues to receive love from cinephiles.
However, the new edition was critically panned, feels dead on arrival, and will likely still result in a loss despite a $43 million budget. It got beat by Overlord, which got nowhere near the marketing push. This feels like a disaster, and only Claire Foy and Lakeith Stanfield may survive the wreckage. That’s right, I straight up did not realize Stanfield was in this film until now.
A quick note, if it wasn’t for $5000, this might have been worse for Dragon Tattoo, which barely outearned A Star Is Born in its sixth week. A Star Is Born might pull ahead when the actuals release.
Box Office Estimates
(via Box Office Mojo @ 12:15a on 11/12/18)
Overall Weekend Box Office
- Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch – $66 Million (NEW)
- Bohemian Rhapsody – $30.8 Million
- Overlord – $10.1 Million (NEW)
- The Nutcracker and the Four Realms – $9.6 Million
- The Girl in the Spider’s Web – $8.015 Million (NEW)
- A Star Is Born – $8.010 Million
- Nobody’s Fool – $6.5
- Venom – $4.9 Million
- Halloween – $3.8 Million
- The Hate U Give – $2.1 Million
Top 3 Per Theater Averages
- Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch – $15,938 (4,141 theaters)
- The Front Runner – $14,000 (4 theaters)
- El Angel – $12,737 (2 theaters)