Kenneth Branagh’s Death on the Nile saw $1.1M in both Wednesday and Thursday previews for Disney’s 20th Century Studios, while Universal’s Jennifer Lopez-Owen Wilson romantic comedy Marry Me posted $525K from Thursday night shows alone.
Marry Me, which also made itself available on Peacock last night as the third Universal dynamic release with its sister streaming service, was in play at 2,700 theaters and began previews at 5 p.m.
Death on the Nile had previews Wednesday at 6 p.m. in select Imax, PLF & 70mm screens, and last night starting at 5 p.m. Death on the Nile is 63% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes with Marry Me not too far behind with 62% fresh.
By comparison, House of Gucci did $1.3M in previews on the Tuesday night heading into the Thanksgiving 5-day stretch with shows that started at 7 p.m.
Death on the Nile will be booked at 3,280 theaters and will have the added juice of Imax and PLFs for the next week until Sony’s Uncharted arrives to lead the 4-day Presidents Day weekend.
Speaking of 4-days, both of these older-female demo wide entries are looking to get money out of Valentine’s Day on Monday. The all-star ensembler Death on the Nile, based on the Agatha Christie novel, is set to lead in the mid teens, while Marry Me is expected to do $8M to $11M. Death on the Nile cost –before P&A — $90M, while Marry Me was a thrifty $23M.
Briarcliff’s Liam Neeson action movie Blacklight did $225K boosted by an appearance by the star at NYC Lincoln Square theater last night.
As Omicron cases ease, and some mask mandates begin to loosen up, this weekend is an interesting study in whether older adults are ready to head back to theaters. To date, UAR/MGM’s House of Gucci has the best opening among adult-demo movies during the pandemic with a $14.4M over the Thanksgiving holiday and a $53.5M total domestic take.
Also, the new crop of Oscar Best Picture nominees are adding theaters, i.e. Dune, King Richard, Belfast, Licorice Pizza, Nightmare Alley, Don’t Look Up, The Power of the Dog and West Side Story. Drive My Car will inch up its theater count a bit, while Apple Originals Films CODA is available on Apple TV+. Look for Don’t Look Up and The Power of the Dog to see viewership gains in the next week on Netflix as well.
Paramount’s Jackass Forever led the weekday box office with robust numbers on Monday ($1.7M), Tuesday ($1.8M), Wednesday ($1.4M) and yesterday ($1.2M). All in, the cume on the modestly-budgeted MTV reality stunt film is $29.3M across seven days at 3,645 theaters.
Sony/Marvel’s Spider-Man: No Way Home at the end of its 8th week is roughly $8.7M away from becoming the third-highest grossing movie ever at the domestic box office, beating Avatar‘s $760.5M and ranking behind Star Wars: The Force Awakens ($936.6M) and Avengers: Endgame ($858.3M). Spider-Man was second on Thursday with $729K at 3,600 sites.
Lionsgate/Centropolis’ Moonfall was third on Thursday with an estimated $388K on 3,446 theaters and first week of $12.2M.
Paramount/Spyglass Media’s Scream was fourth yesterday with an estimated $301K at 3,270, raising its cume through the end of week 4 to $70.3M.
Universal/Illumination’s Sing 2 made $193K at 3,266 theaters on Thursday, for a running total through seven weeks of $140.4M. That’s easily the highest-grossing family movie stateside during the pandemic.
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