A slow slate of releases leads to some box office history being made.
It was a very mild weekend for new titles as studios pause before the coming weeks of blockbuster debuts. (Next week sees “Mortal Engines”, and a new “Spider-Man” version, followed then by “Aquaman” and “Bumblebee” squaring off”.) Studios focused on their awards season titles, looking to position films for recognition with expansion and getting a promotional bump from the Golden Globes nominations.
The distracted schedule means a pair of long-standing holiday films were battling tightly for the top position, and this led to a unique bit of history taking place. The top two films were both animated releases – a rarity itself – but this is the first time ever that it has occured on consecutive weeks. You will forever remember where you were when this event occurred!
1. RALPH BREAKS THE INTERNET – $16.14 Million
It has become an annual tradition that Disney will be the Thanksgiving ruler. Ralph becomes the third straight year the studio had an animated film open on Turkey Day, and it stays at #1 for three straight weeks as well. At this point in the run “Ralph” has drawn in $140 million and is settled in right between those previous titles — Slightly ahead of last year’s “Coco”, and slightly trailing “2016’s “Moana”. Overseas it is drawing well, adding over another $100 sso far.
2. DR. SEUSS’ THE GRINCH – $15.17m
The tightly battled contest this week is a testament to the strength this title has shown. In theaters now for five weeks it has proven to be a crowd favorite, still on 3,800 screens. To date it has taken in over $220 million, but the stiffened competition coming up in the following weeks will determine if it can nudge its way over the $250 million plateau.
3. CREED 2 – $10.32m
Performing better to this point than the original it takes an impressively slim drop of only -38%, albeit in a rather soft week in overall box office. It should top the $110 million earned by the first film.
4. FANTASTIC BEASTS: THE CRIMES OF GRINDElWALD – $6.8m
Such a mixed bag of data from this Harry Potter universe selection. It has put up some serious numbers – $145 domestic, plus $425 million foreign – but it is lagging behind “The Grinch”, released ahead of it and costing less than half to produce. Overall I’d say Warnwers is satisfied with these ressults, if not thrilled.
5. BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY – $6.0m
Refusing to go away this crowd and critic pleaser is now benefiting from awards recognition. The Golden Globes have nominated it for Best Dramatic film, and star Rami Malek was also recognized for his portrayal of Freddie Mercury.
6. INSTANT FAMILY – $5.6m
Quietly lingering and collecting decent returns. The Mark Wahlberg family comedy has now gotten past the $50 million mark, which few had predicted.
7. GREEN BOOK – $3.93m
It had been speculated that Universal may have mishandled this title, expanding it quickly into 1,000 weeks ago. However it has gained some traction since then, and this week it was rewarded with a handful of significant Golden Globes nominations in significant categories, including a mildly surprising nod to director Bobby Farrelly.
8. ROBIN HOOD – $3.58m
The dismally performing period action piece is just lingering as a vapor in a very soft week. Mild surprise it has not dropped more than 250 screens this week, but that is entirely due to the lack of new releases commanding screen attention. By next week this one will have most of its display space taken from it as it disappears into the forest.
9. THE POSSESSION OF HANNAH GRACE – $3.17m
A bit of a surprise for a horror title in that it only drops -50% in week two. This is made more surprising given the audience marks have not been good at all, but there seems just enough interest in a horror diversion in a lax weekend.
10. WIDOWS – $3.1m
It did not receive any love from the Golden Globes as hoped for so there was no momentum here.