It was a lackluster weekend for everyone except Universal, which saw its Oscar nominated Best Picture Green Book in its widest release and the studio’s and BVI/Blumhouse’s Glass holding onto No. 1 for its second weekend in a row. For the two newbies — The Kid Who Would Be King and Serenity — they saw little to no action, with the latter marking the lowest opening ever for its stars Anne Hathaway and Matthew McConaughey.
This all as the Midwest is in a deep freeze and bracing for the coldest temps in two decades as the week unfolds. It will be another two weekends before the box office finds some life again, when Warner Bros.’ The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part comes to form on February 8. Few schools are off, and that really doesn’t change until Presidents Day weekend on February 15.
For Glass, its second frame took in an estimated $18.5M to $19M (depending on the day) for a roughly 53% drop and a 10-day cume now of $72.9M to $73.5M– good enough for continued bragging rights of No. 1 in its second weekend. This second frame is significantly lower than the $25.6M that its 2017 predecessor Split posted, putting Glass 6.8% behind that title by Sunday in its running cume. Split ended its domestic run at $138.2M.
Another big play for Uni this weekend is its DreamWorks/Participant production Green Book, which has come alive with an estimated $5.3M to $5.4M in its widest break of 2,430 theaters during the course of its 11-weekend run and a running total of $49M. Green Book is one of a handful of Oscar best picture nominees this year that will see surges at the B.O.; the truth is that there aren’t that many. Stay tuned for more on that.
There are two other wide entries in the mix this weekend, but they aren’t making any kind of news aside from the mediocre to bad kind. 20th Century Fox’s Joe Cornish family pic The Kid Who Would Be King is looking at $7.15M for the frame, which isn’t a great start for a production that cost $59M. That said, critics love it because the movie is from the acclaimed Attack the Block filmmaker at 86% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes, and CinemaScore wasn’t too shabby with a B+. PostTrak ratings were 71% in the top two boxes with a 46% recommend for general audiences. Kids were better, coming in at 83% in the top two boxes with a 59% recommend. Those who showed were 58%-42% male and 52% under 17 with 48% under 12 years old.
Online, the conversation on social media was mixed. The movie had a moderate Social Media Universe of 106.1M, which is shy of the family/live-action SMU benchmark of 154.9M, according to RelishMix which added that if you look at the key social metrics, the movie’s EOR is only 3:1, which is well short of the usual 13:1 for the genre. And, Facebook Fans are only 300 a day on average, while the usual is closer to 1.2K for average new Fans on the platform. But, thanks to some new clips shared by Fox Family Entertainment over the past several weeks, the movie has been averaging 46.3K views daily on YouTube views for top clips. Granted, some of these are clearly ad-supported, but it’s also worth noting that many in the top clips (not included in this stated average) have been international in nature.
Aviron’s Anne Hathaway-Matthew McConaughey indie thriller Serenity is nothing but stress for the distributor with a $4.4M start (Avrion is going against other industry estimates to predict that it will have a stronger Sunday to make $4.8M), a 21% RT score and a D+ CinemaScore. PostTrak was awful with 56% overall positive and an atrocious 34% recommend. Ticket buyers were 53/47 male and 53% under 35. It ranked No. 8 in the Top Ten behind the third week of A Dog’s Way Home. Woof.
Serenity, directed by Dirty Pretty Things Oscar nominee Steven Knight, follows a fishing boat captain (McConaughey) whose ex-wife (Hathaway) finds him on Plymouth Island, and begs him to save her from her violent new husband (Jason Clarke). The plan? Take him out on a fishing excursion, throw him to the sharks and leave him for dead. Aviron bought the project for seven figures at the script stage with Hathaway and McConaughey. They wanted to be in business with Knight.
There have been some rumblings that the proper amount of P&A wasn’t spent on this film, especially with the stars promoting it. That said, given the critical and audience scores here, the distributor had to know what it had in the end; in such scenarios, no studio would throw good money after bad. But even on social media, its reach was well behind the benchmark for drama thrillers. According to RelishMix, its Social Media Universe was 47.5M where the norm is around 82.8M. Hathaway was the only major player in the film promoting it on social media (she has 17.4M fans and followers across FB and Intsagram). Social chatter is, for the most part, making fun of the materials as in they’re confused by several aspects. For one example, people are wondering if the story based on a true story about a woman’s abduction? Other fans of the mid 2000s sci-fi hit, Serenity are asking, “couldn’t they have given this thriller a different title?” On a positive note, it seemed to appeal to fans of Body Heat, but clearly not that much given its tepid opening.
STX/Lantern Entertainment’s The Upside is in second place for a second weekend in a row with a third-weekend take of $12M+, -19%, for a running total by Sunday of around $62.9M to $63.1M. The original Weinstein Co. release, a remake of The Intouchables starring Bryan Cranston and Kevin Hart is holding up wonderfully. Those in the acquisition world who screened it always knew this leftover from the old regime would click at the B.O.
The downside this year is that when it comes to best picture nominees, only four will truly see major boosts by the time trophies are handed out on Feb. 24. Last year, there were seven. Why is that? Last year there were more movies that opened later in the 2017 calendar or were in limited release. Oscar night also came later in the year (March 4) due to the Winter Olympics. Three of this year’s nominees opened before November (BlacKkKlansman, A Star Is Born and Black Panther) and the other, Netflix/Participant’s Roma, is on streaming, not reporting box office grosses. BlacKkKlansman was re-released in 168 locations around the country this weekend. Warner’s A Star Is Born is in 1,192 up from 415 locations with an estimated $1.2M. We break out industry projections by Oscar night in the chart below. By no means are we seeing the B.O. spikes that we did last year between Oscar noms and Oscar night with pics like The Shape of Water +86% in its total cume and Phantom Thread up close to two fold.
Anita Busch reported Sunday’s box office grosses.
OSCAR BEST PICTURE NOM B.O. BOOST
Here’s the Top 10 and notables for this weekend’s box office:
1. Glass (UNI/DIS), 3,844 theaters (+3) / $4.9M Fri. (-69%) / $8.6M Sat. (+74%) / Sun. (-45%) / $4.77M to $5.3M Sun. (-45%) / 3-day cume: $18.5M to $19M (-59%) / Total cume: $72.9M to $73.5M (-53%) / Wk 2
2. The Upside (STX), 3,377 theaters (+57) / $3.1M Fri. (-27%) / $5.5M Sat. (+79%) / $3.3M to $3.6M Sun. (-38% to 40%) / 3-day cume: $12M+ / Total: $62.9M to $63M+ / Wk 3
3. Aquaman (WB), 3,134 theaters (-341) / $1.69M Fri. (-34%) / Sat. $3.4M (+101%) / $2.2M Sun. (-35%) / 3-day cume: $7.35M / Total: $316.5M / Wk 6
4). The Kid Who Would Be King (FOX), 3,521 theaters / $1.8M Fri. / $3.3M Sat. (97%) / $2.15 Sun. (-35%) / 3-day cume: $7.15M / Wk 1
5. Spider-Man:Into the Spider Verse (SONY), 2,383 theaters (-329) / $1.3M Fri. (-25%) / $2.9M Sat. (+118%) / $2M Sun. (-30%) / 3-day cume: $6.3M (-27%) / Total: $169.19M / Wk 7
6. Green Book (UNI/DW/PART), 2,430 theaters (+1,518) / $1.5M Fri. (+150%) / $2.4M (+73%) / $1.4M to $1.57M Sun. (-35% to 40%) / 3-day cume: $5.3M to $5.4M (+148%) / Total: $49M / Wk 11
7. A Dog’s Way Home (SONY), 3,081 theaters (-9) / $1.1M Fri. (-34%) / $2.4M (+121%) / $1.7M Sun. (-30%) / 3-day cume: $5.2M / Total: $30.8M / Wk 3
8. Serenity (AV), 2,561 theaters / $1.5M Fri. (includes est. $250K in previews) / $1.75M Sat. (+10%) / $1M+ Sun. (-30%) / 3-day: $4.4M / Wk 1
9. Escape Room (SONY), 2,192 theaters (-517) / $1M Fri. (-34%) / $1.9M Sat. (80%) / $1.25M (-33%) Sun. / 3-day cume: $4.28M / Total: $47.85M / Wk 4
Noteworthy: 12. Dragon Ball Super: Broly (Fun) 1,040 theaters (-210) / $817K Fri. (-66%) / $1.2M Sat. (+39%) / $600K to $800K Sun. (-35%) / 3-day $2.7M to $3M (-65%) / Total: $26M to $27.9M / Wk 2
Oscar best picture nominee notables:
The Favourite (FSL), 1,540 theaters (+1,023) / $637K Fri. (+190%) / $1.1M Sat. (+89%) / $750K Sun. (-35%) / 3-day cume: $2.48M to $2.5M (+208%) / Total: $26M+ / Wk 10
Bohemian Rhapsody (DW/UNI), 1,423 theaters (+246) / $612M Fri. (+1%) / $1.15M Sat. (+89%) / $700K Sun. (-38%) / 3-day cume: $2.48M (+1%) / Total: $205.8M / Wk 13
Vice (ANNP), 1,557 theaters (+382) / $477K Fri. (-3%) / $822K Sat. (+72%) / $450K Sun. (-45%) / 3-day cume: $1.75M (-1%) / Total: $42M / Wk 5
A Star Is Born (WB), 1,192 theaters (+777) / $336K (+100%) Fri. / $593K Sat. (+90%) / $355K Sun. (-40%) / 3-day cume: $1.2M (+108%) / Total: $206.3M / Wk 17
BlackkKlansman (FOCUS) 171 theaters (+171) / $26K Fri. / $51K Sat. (+94%) / $31K Sun. (-40%) / 3-day cume: $108K / Total: $48.6M