The RedState Box Office Report - DUMBO Glides (not Soars) and an Anti-Abortion Drama Exceeds All Predictions


The pre-Spring segment on the calendar has become appropriated by Disney in recent years. The studio’s mixture of Marvel films and live-action adaptations of its animated classics serves now as an annual precursor to summer — and this year sees one title from each category, as the next “Avengers” looms on the horizon.


While 2019 has been consistently lagging behind last year’s figures there is a sign of things getting better overall, with a number of strong titles holding onto audiences. Things are being helped by the kids being out of school for Spring Break, so it is a flush time for theater owners.Now, on with the show!

1. DUMBO – $45.0 Million
This stands as the lowest of the live-action studio remakes, but it is not a disaster — it is just “meh”. The reviews were mixed-to-positive, and so were the returns. The audience ratings were strong (“A-” CinemaScore, PostTrak 80% “Positive”) so there could be some life for this going ahead, but it seems limited. The biggest challenge was making things into a contemporary draw, as this story is a nearly 80 year old property. It did not tap into the older crowd most likely to be drawn in, as the 45+ year olds only made up 13% of the audience.

2. US – $33.6m
A respectable second week hold of -52% shows there is still interest in the Jordan Peele horror effort. His last film, “Get Out”, had a much better second week hold of -18%, but that film was regarded as more of a surprise, and had a smaller opening as well. The total here is now over $125 million, and after the 10 day mark it is $50 million ahead of that first film.

3. CAPTAIN MARVEL – $20.5m
An unqualified hit for Marvel – again. It has been out for one month and it has only this weekend dropped slightly below the 4,000 screen level. So far this is a $235 million draw in North America. In the matter of days it will have crossed over the $1 billion plateau in global box office.


4. FIVE FEET APART – $6.25m
This small teen romance needed to reach the mid-20s in order to start seeing a profit. It has shown surprising sustainability in a crowded market, drawing over $35 million to date.

5. UNPLANNED – $6.11m
This anti-abortion film is a drama based on the life of Abbey Johnson, a former director of Planned Parenthood who later quit and become a staunch pro-life activist. The movie was facing significant resistance in the entertainment community, unable to to get advertising on cable television, and faced having its Twitter account suspended this weekend without any notice. Despite these promotional challenges the film out performed significantly. Estimates had it maybe earning in the $2.5-3 million range, so a return of nearly double the projections is surprising. It is playing on just over 1,000 screens, but its per-screen average would place it higher than “Captain Marvel”.

6. WONDER PARK – $4.94m
A mostly overlooked animated try that is not generating any business to turn heads, nor to lead to a profit.

This weekend sees it hitting a couple of benchmarks. Domestically it now has reached $150 million, and while a lower-than-expected tally on the global stage it has drawn $500 million.

8. HOTEL MUMBAI – $3.16m
Expanding onto 900+ screens is the drama based on real events of the terrorist attack on a resort in India, starring Armie Hammer and Dev Patel. It was mostly approved by critics but has had light promotional support.


It is lingering around and trying to inch its way up to becoming the second-highest grossing of the Madea films.

10. BEACH BUM – $1.8m
It has been a tough year so far for Matthew McConaughey. This marks for his worst opening of his career for a film on at least 1,000 screens, besting (“worsting”??) his laughably bad release this past January, “Serenity”. That one was debuting on 2,500 screens, earning $4.41m, while “Bum” was showing on just 1,100 screens — meaning the per-screen average here was slightly lower. Could have called it “Beach Bomb”.


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