UPDATED, Saturday 7:30 AM: This morning, The Maze Runner is right in line with our estimates last night, given that we think today will be a strong moviegoing time for this YA offering from Fox. While it looked much softer in matinees yesterday, we held off reporting because we knew that the audience for this picture was going to come out in the evening and late night showings. They did. If this gain tonight by around 10%, Fox will see the weekend end at $31.2M. Between this, its A- CinemaScore (which should give it a 3.5M multiple) and its international performance, it should give Fox yet another profitable film from the YA genre. Liam Neeson’s blood-soaked actioner A Walk Among the Tombstones performed much lower than the tracking showed for Universal — not surprising as so did Maze Runner — so let’s look at this opening, compared to its budget.
Tombstones was made for about $27M and received some tax incentives which brought the budget down to more like $23M. It should end the weekend with only $14M and a B- CinemaScore (which usually translates to around a 2.7 multiple) so this could end up around $38M domestically. Not great when you figure in added marketing and distribution costs as well as the split with the exhibitors. Liam Neeson’s last outing, Non-Stop made $110M overseas after an $28.8M opening weekend domestically. This one is on track to make less than his 2012 film The Grey which opened to $19M domestically and took in a lifetime gross of $51M; it only made $25M overseas. It also had a disappointing B-. So A Walk Among the Tombstones is going to have to do wonderful business overseas and on home entertainment. Given that it is playing best with older males, a home entertainment bump is likely.
This is Where I Leave You is coming in right about at the expectation we had on Thursday — we figured around $12M and it looks like it will come in at $11.7M to $11.9M. We were told that the budget for this R-rated ensemble that stars Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Adam Driver and Jane Fonda was around $19M+ so, once again, it’s going to have to make more than $40M all in to find a profit if that budget number from the studio is even accurate. With a B+ CinemaScore, it could translate into an average 3.2 multiple which would bring it to $37.8M domestically.
In their second weekends, No Good Deed is expected to drop about 60% to bring in around $9.6M while Dolphin Tale 2 is expected to get a nice bump from family audiences today and end the weekend down around 48%. Both pictures held their screens. Total cumes after this weekend should be around $40M for Deed and $26.8M for Dolphin Tale which is expected to take the No. 5 spot this weekend. The Drop, which added 383 screens this weekend as it is in a platform release, is still going to lose ground and should only end up with a $2M weekend. Its cume to date will be around $7.7M.
The chart is on its way, but that’s how it looks at the moment.
PREVIOUSLY, Friday 11:13 PM: After soft matinees today, the sci-fi action thriller The Maze Runner took off this evening and is expected to chase in an estimated $11M today (that includes the $1.1M from last night) for a three-day weekend gross of around $30M to $32M. Saturday should be another decent moviegoing night for this YA picture which stars MTV’s Teen Wolf star Dylan O’Brien. It also got an A- CinemaScore from its core audience which should give a nice multiple.
With a budget of around $34M+ (it actually looks like more on screen thanks to the CGI done in Vancouver by Method Studios), this one is doing quite well for Fox. It bowed strong last weekend in international markets, besting fellow YA sci-fi actioner Divergent in the territories it opened in, such as Mexico. It is currently rolling out to 48 other territories. Today’s gross puts it ahead of last year’s Ender’s Game which had a first day take of $9.8M and went onto gross $27M for the weekend. Fox distribution execs had the estimated gross for Maze Runner pegged early on, despite faulty tracking numbers leading into the weekend.
Liam Neeson’s A Walk Among the Tombstones is expected to open under his 2012 turn in The Grey which took in $6.4M its first day for a $19.6M haul in 2012. That was the comp we were looking at for Tombstones. However, this bloody crime drama — it’s a hard R — doesn’t seem to be bringing in the ladies this time around the way Non-Stop did for Neeson earlier this year. We expect the Universal picture to have $4.75M today and only a $13.9M to $14M take for the three-day. That was well under the tracking that had it at $19M going into the weekend. The budget on this grisly film was $23M. It received a B- CinemaScore.
This is Where We Come In third. Didn’t we see this movie already (Home for the Holidays)? The Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, and Adam Driver-starring R-rated comedy This is Where I Leave You will stay put this weekend in the No. 3 spot for a Friday take of around $4M. It’s three-day weekend of about what we figured, $11.7M on a $19M+ budget. The Warner Bros.’ film has been tracking the best with older females. It got a B+ CinemaScore from its core audience which means it could do a 3 multiple.
The Idris Elba, Taraji P. Henson suspense thriller No Good Deed looks to drop a big 58% in its second frame on the same number of runs for a weekend total of anywhere between $9.5M to $10M; it’s total cume is around $39M to $40M. It should take the No. 4 spot. The second weekend of the family film, Dolphin Tale 2 from Alcon Entertainment and Warner Bros. is holding steady, expected down about 50% on the same number of theaters for a three-day cume of $8.2M to $8.5M and total to date of $26.3M.
Despite adding 383 theaters, The Drop is not expected to do much business this weekend and will be down about 50% to take in about $2M for Fox Searchlight.
Here’s the chart. This is where I leave you. More in the AM:
1). The Maze Runner (FOX), 3,064 theaters / $11M to $11.5M Fri. (includes $1.1M late nights) / 3-day est. cume: $30M to $32M / Wk 1
2). A Walk Among the Tombstones (UNI), 2,712 theaters / $4.75M Fri. (includes $428K in late nights) / 3-day cume: $13.9M to $14M / Wk 1
3). This is Where I Leave You (WB), 2,868 theaters / $4M Fri. (includes est. $100K in late nights) / 3-day cume: $11.7M / Wk 1
4). No Good Deed (SONY), 2,175 theaters (0) / $2.8M to $3M Fri. / 3-day cume: $9.5M to $10M (-60%) / Total cume: $39M to $40M / Wk 2
5). Dolphin Tale 2 (WB), 3,656 theaters (0) / $2.1M Fri. / 3-day cume: $8.2M to $8.5M (-48%) / Total cume: $26.3M / Wk 2
6). Guardians of the Galaxy (DIS), 2,846 theaters (-258) / $1.39M Fri. / 3-day cume: $5.3M / Total cume: $313.9M / Wk 8
7/8). Let’s Be Cops (FOX), 2,312 theaters (-443) / $750K Fri. / 3-day cume: $2.5M / Total cume: $77M / Wk 6
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (PAR), 2,348 theaters (-609) / $650K Friday / 3-day cume: $2.75M / Total cume: $185M / Wk 7
9). The Drop (FSL), 1,192 theaters (+383) / $675K Fri. / 3-day cume: $2.M (-50%) / Total cume: $7.7M / Wk 2
10). If I Stay (WB), 2,371 theaters (-669) / $550K Fri. / 3-day cume: $1.85M / Total cume: $48M / Wk 5
NOTEWORTHY: 17). Tusk (A24), 602 theaters / $250K Fri. / 3-day cume: $676K / Per screen average: $1,123 / Wk 7