SUNDAY UPDATE, writethru: Flying in well below pre-weekend projections, Warner Bros’ Birds Of Prey has landed an estimated $48M bow from 78 international box office markets. Combined with domestic‘s disappointing performance, the global opening is $81.3M.
Despite good reviews and positive reactions, the DC spinoff did not take to overseas skies in the $60M-$70M range as hoped. That’s thanks to a number of factors — including the R nature of the pic that left a core group of young girls sidelined in some markets, and a general lack of eventized excitement. There might also have been an opportunity to help here by getting Harley Quinn’s name up front in the title translations (then again, there is wonder over whether the character has a big enough following to merit her own movie). As it is, the title remained in tact as Birds Of Prey in some international markets, or was directly translated to the local language. And of course there is the coronavirus, which is impacting overall moviegoing in SE Asia are is seen as contributing to some of BOP‘s scores.
Still, Asia was not expected to be the key factor here, rather it’s the traditional DC markets in Europe and Latin America that count the most. Mexico was the weekend leader at $4.6M in No. 1 and ahead of R-rated comps like Red Sparrow (+180%), Mad Max: Fury Road (+82%), Terminator: Dark Fate (+64%) and Lucy (+51%). Russia was next at $4M in No. 1.
In the UK, Birds Of Prey‘s $3.9M took the No. 2 spot behind the talking animals of Universal’s Dolittle which had previews last weekend. Brazil ($2.8M) and France ($2.7M) round out the Top 5 on BOP.
Speaking of Dolittle, it came in 2nd for the studios at the international box office this weekend with another $18.2M from 65 markets and as it approaches $100M overseas. Sony’s Bad Boys For Life keeps riding along, adding $15.8M for a $170M running offshore total and $336M globally.
Meanwhile, the Oscars are upon us this evening and some of the contenders are still out in force around the globe. Amblin/Universal’s 1917 brought in another combined $15.2M for an offshore cume of $155M and $287.4M worldwide. Sony’s Little Women wrote home with another $5.8M in 54 markets off very solid holds and with a $74.5M overseas cume to date for $177M global. And, Searchlight’s Jojo Rabbit hopped to $4.3M from 42 hubs and has grossed $44M abroad with strong holds for $74.3M global. Also notable, Lionsgate’s Knives Out is approaching the $300M worldwide milestone.
With the global box office already expecting a $1B+ blow amid the coronavirus shutdowns in Asia, here’s hoping that Paramount’s Sonic The Hedgehog delivers when it starts international rollout in some markets next weekend, followed by Universal/Blumhouse’s The Invisible Man at the end of the month. Not discounting the overriding human concerns, the industry is hopeful China (and other affected areas) comes back online soon for the health of the movie business, and a little more clarity about the future.
Breakdowns on this weekend’s films above and more have been updated below.
BIRDS OF PREY
Warner Bros’ Birds Of Prey winged its way to 78 overseas markets this weekend, underperforming with a $48M start versus what the industry was seeing as a potential $60M-$70M launch.
As noted above, the film just didn’t pack folks in with what sources say was a general lack of excitement, despite positive scores. The R-rating, which doesn’t always convert in an apples-to-apples manner overseas, nevertheless is thought to have hurt business as it kept the target demo behind the ropes in many markets.
The coronavirus is also having an impact on moviegoing in SE Asia. While DC leans first and foremost into Europe and Latin America, theater closures and overall precautions in the Asian markets can’t be discounted.
The top play on the Cathy Yan-directed BOP was Mexico this weekend with $4.6M from 3,483 screens to top R-rated comps like Red Sparrow, Mad Max: Fury Road, Terminator: Dark Fate and Lucy. Next up was Russia at $4M from 2,936 and 13% over DC stablemate Wonder Woman. The UK debuted in 2nd place behind Dolittle with $3.9M from 1,211, above Dark Fate and on par with Lucy.
Brazil alighted with $2.8M from 1,506, 85% above Lucy and 60% over Dark Fate. France’s $2.7M at 593 dates was even with Dark Fate. Australia also did $2.7M (on 528 screens), coming in 20% bigger than Dark Fate.
Rounding out the Top 10 are Indonesia with $2.4M, Korea at $1.9M, Germany with $1.8M and Taiwain’s $1.5M.
All major market openings were No. 1 save the UK and Germany which were both under Dolittle while Korea and Italy had local pics at the top.
In IMAX, BOP made $5M worldwide, $2.6M of that from 390 overseas screens.
Japan is still to release, on March 20.
Universal’s Robert Downey Jr comedy is nearing the $100M international mark as it comes off an $18.8M weekend in 65 overseas markets. The offshore cume is $94.7M for $158.7M globally.
In what has been a staggered rollout, Dolittle added majors the UK and France this session. The former was a No. 1 bow at $6.47M (including last weekend’s $2.5M in previews) from 605 sites. It’s tracking in line with Maleficent 2 in the market and has school holidays ahead (but also Sonic The Hedgehog). France debuted with $2.5M from 514 locations at No. 2.
Holds were good in Germany, Spain and Australia which have respectively cumed $5.26M, $4.94M and $7.13M. Upcoming markets include Brazil, Russia and Japan while China is still TBC owing to the coronavirus shutdown.
Amblin/Universal’s major Oscar contender is nearing the $300M global mark with after an added $15.2M in combined overseas takings this weekend ($6.4M for UNI markets and $8.7M from the Amblin hubs). The BAFTA Best Picture winner now has an offshore cume of $154.8M with Japan on deck next session. The worldwide cume is $287.4M.
For UNI, the biggest new entry this frame was the Philippines at $206K from 150 locations to outstrip the lifetimes of The Post, The Imitation Game and Darkest Hour. The top holdover was France which has now grossed $12M.
Overall, the No. 1 overseas hub is the UK where eOne releases. The gross there is $46.1M, down just 27% after last weekend’s BAFTA triumphs. Spain is at $8.8M, off 1% in its 5th session and Australia saw a 5% dip in the 5th week for a $13M cume.
Greta Gerwig’s Oscar hopeful dipped 36% in its latest frame, adding $5.8M from 54 markets so far. The offshore cume is $74.5M with global at $177M.
Playability continues as drops were slight in such markets as Argentina (-1%), Mexico (-6%), Germany (-11%), Switzerland (-14%), Australia (-23%), Portugal (-20%) and Poland (-28%).
The Top 5 is made up of the UK ($27.1M), Australia ($10.2M), Italy ($6.4M), France ($5.4M) and Spain ($5M).
On deck are Korea this week and Japan in March.
MISC UPDATED CUMES/NOTABLE
Jojo Rabbit (DIS): $4.3M intl weekend (42 markets); $44M intl cume ($74.3M global)
The Gentlemen (MIR): $3.75M intl weekend (14 markets); $33.5M intl cume ($60.4M global)
Jumanji: The Next Level (SNY): $3.3M intl weekend (58 markets); $470M intl cume ($768M global)
Spies In Disguise (DIS): $2.5M intl weekend (43 markets); $98.1M intl cume ($163M global)
Knives Out (LGF): $1.3M intl weekend (52 markets); $140.7M intl cume ($299.6M global)
Cats (UNI): $800K intl weekend (18 markets); $44.7M intl cume ($71.8M global)
Underwater (DIS): $700K intl weekend (21 markets); $22M intl cume ($39M global)
The Lighthouse (UNI): $600K intl weekend (19 markets); $5.9M intl cume ($16.8M global)
PREVIOUS, SATURDAY UPDATE: Much as it is domestically, Warner Bros’ Birds Of Prey is flying in below projections, likely to land in the low- to mid-$50Ms for the full debut frame at the international box office. The Friday gross in 78 offshore markets was $10.3M, lifting the overseas cume to $18.1M across the first three days of play.
Before the weekend, folks were seeing this DC spinoff alighting in the $60M-$70M range abroad. Reviews and reactions have been positive, but there is consistency in how the film is performing domestically and internationally. While R ratings don’t convert in the same way in all offshore hubs — in the UK for example, kids over 15 can get in to see this one — the movie appeals strongly to teenage girls who are being sidelined in certain markets. Similar to what Anthony has detailed, putting Harley Quinn’s name up front might also have helped (then again, another question going around is whether the character has a big enough following to merit her own movie). As it is, the title has remained in tact as Birds Of Prey in some international markets, or been directly translated to the local language.
BOP‘s numbers are not in line with expectations, but the Margot Robbie-starrer is performing best in the usual suspect markets for a DC pic. Friday’s openings included the UK at $1.2M from 1,211 screens which is on par with Lucy and 61% bigger than Terminator: Dark Fate. Mexico also bowed on Friday with $1.2M on 3,379 screens for 58% better than Dark Fate and 59% over Mad Max: Fury Road. Spain came in even with Fury Road at $370K from 505. All of the Friday launches were No. 1s.
After two days of play, Russia is leading all markets at $1.6M, followed by Brazil and France (3 days) at $1.1M each, Australia with $991K, Korea (3 days) at $977K, Germany with $734K and Italy at $396K.
In Asia, the box office is being impacted by the coronavirus and though BOP is not pulling its potential there, the available audience is giving it solid market share.
We’ll be back on Sunday with a full weekend update.
PREVIOUS, FRIDAY: Warner Bros’ Birds Of Prey winged its way to 51 overseas markets on Wednesday and Thursday, grossing $7.8M at the international box office through those first two days. The Cathy Yan-directed DC spinoff has opened to No. 1 in its major plays, save Korea and Italy where local titles are dominating. Ahead of the weekend, the industry was seeing a $60M-$70M offshore launch frame; the film could come in at the lower end of that range.
In like-for-like markets and at today’s rates, Suicide Squad bowed to $135.1M, but SS opened in summer and carried a PG-13 rating. Warners is also using R-rated comps for Birds Of Prey like Mad Max: Fury Road which opened to $54M in like-for-likes. Overseas reactions have been similar to domestic on BOP and as the film skews to young women, the weekend is key.
DC titles overseas lean heavily into the European majors and Latin America with the UK, Brazil, Mexico, Australia and Russia repping the Top 5 on Suicide Squad. As expected this weekend, results are being impacted in Asia due to concern over the coronavirus epidemic with some cinemas shuttering out of precaution. Overall moviegoing is down.
The strongest start for Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn so far is Russia, at $784K from 2,936 screens. That’s above Mad Max: Fury Road (+16%) and Terminator: Dark Fate (+4%) while on par with Wonder Woman. Australia also beat R-rated comps at $437K from 528. Brazil landed $578K on Thursday from 1,506. And, Taiwan opened to $405K yesterday on 246 screens. Germany ($349K/714 screens) and Italy ($175K/520) round out the Thursday bows.
After two days of play, Korea has grossed $681K in 2nd place behind local mystery The Closet. France has a running cume of $680K on 593 screens across Wednesday and Thursday.
The UK, Spain, Mexico and 25 smaller markets released today and we’ll have updated numbers on Saturday morning.