A two-fisted challenge for theaters compounds an already soft schedule.
One thing film distributors are quick to do is look for outside influences to attribute for underperformance at the box office. Weather, cultural events, or holiday distractions are quick to be cited when needed. A few years ago a soft weekend in Europe was blamed on an Icelandic volcano explosion. The cause is rarely substandard product offered on screen.
This week’s frame follows a depressed performance seven days ago, with two major factors; the major Mayweather-McGregor boxing match, and the massive hurricane hitting the Texas coast. (The fight was broadcast live in nearly 500 theaters by Fathom Events, earning a gross of $2.4million.) Even absent those influences it would have been an embarrassment at the cineplex. Uninspiring debuts, and tepid holdovers led to dismal returns — the entire top-10 did not amount to $45 million, one of the worst weekends in decades. Here are the scores for the ten rounds of films, leading to a TKO for studios.
1. HITMAN’S BODYGUARD – $10.05 million
With little in the way of challenging premiers this comedy action piece with Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson repeats in the top slot. This gives an average drop of -53%, but depending on the hefty marketing Lionsgate threw behind this title it may still be a long road to seeing a profit.
2. ANNABELLE: CREATION – $7.35m
This Blumhouse-produced horror product has been printing money off of a discounted $15million budget. Not only is this overperforming stateside but it is doing remarkably strong business overseas. The total global haul so far is well over $200million.
3. LEAP! – $5.011m
The Weinstein Company purchased this French-Canadian animated title for a single-figure price, but it did not connect with a wide enough audience. Of those that did buy tickets 75% were female, meaning there was not interest across enough demographics. This soft open means it is not likely to have a long term prospect at drawing enough interest.
4. WIND RIVER – $4.41m
The Weinstein Company saw better prospects with this effort. Expanding for a second week in a row this art house detective thriller is now on over 2,000 screens and performing respectfully. The screen average for this Jeremy Renner vehicle had a better screen average than “Leap!”.
5. LOGAN LUCKY – $4.36m
A decent second week hold of -43% is mitigated by the poor opening last week. However audiences and critics both graded it favorably. This means the possibility of some steady returns, and later interest in the streaming/rental release windows could be a sign of future fortune.
6. DUNKIRK – $3.95m
Steadily steaming forward across all categories Christopher Nolan sees his historical drama now drawing over $400million worldwide. Only titles involving a knight with a dark past and the loss of his parents has performed better for him.
7. SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING – $2.72m
Now spending 2 months in the top 10 Sony has a rare victory for the year with this title. With the exception of “Baby Driver”, the rest of its release slate in 2017 has not been the stuff you brag about.
8. BIRTH OF THE DRAGON – $2.5m
A small studio – B H Tilt – went with a targeted marketing plan and modest rollout of 1,600 theaters for an economical release. The story concerning Bruce Lee was thought to be the likeliest affected by the big boxing event, and the film did suffer a drop of -29% on Saturday over Friday. This weekend performance was about equal to what the fight itself drew on Saturday in theaters.
9. THE EMOJI MOVIE – $2.35m
The embarrassment that will not go away. Audiences and critics hated this film, and yet it manages to somehow linger. Maybe summer camps across the country are carting in throngs with enough numbers???
10. GIRLS TRIP – $2.66m
After six weeks the interest is still there. This success is only shedding small amounts of theaters each week so it has been given the chance to stretch out its fortunes.