Pixar’s long-awaited follow-up to superhero hit The Incredibles has posted the largest opening ever for an animated movie. Read on for details on the smash sequel, along with new and notable movies at the box office.
Pixar’s Incredibles 2 generated a record-shattering $180 million opening from 4,410 locations over the weekend, as the animated mom and pop superheroes Bob and Ellen Paar – that’s Mr. Incredible and Elastigirl – showed off box office chops that’d make any of Marvel’s spandex-clad heroes proud.
Incredibles 2 blew away the standard for the best opening by an animated film set by another Pixar sequel, Finding Dory, in 2016 with $135 million and further cemented the reality that superheroes will rule the 2018 summer box office. Two of the year’s top three movies domestically so far – Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War – are superhero movies from Marvel Studios, like Pixar a unit of Disney, and Incredibles 2 now appears poised to join that fast crowd. It was also the best opening ever by a PG-rated film, ahead of the $174.6 million debut of Beauty and the Beast in 2017.
Incredibles 2, written and directed by Brad Bird, packed Pixar’s usual multi-generational and crowd-pleasing punch and benefitted from being the first animated wide release since Sherlock Gnomes in March. It returned the original film’s voice cast –topped by Craig T. Nelson, Holly Hunter, and Samuel L. Jackson – and came in with a glossy 94% on the Tomatometer. Opening weekend crowds – 51% female and 40% between the ages of 18 and 24 – and gave it an 89% Audience Score and an A+ CinemaScore.
Incredibles 2 added another $51.5 million overseas, giving it a global total of $231.5 million for the weekend, according to Box Office Mojo.
Ocean’s 8, last weekend’s top film, held a respectable 53% of its audience from its opening but was barely within shouting distance with $19.5 million. The almost Fresh 56% Tomatometer rating for Tag, the Ed Helms-Jeremy Renner comedy from Warner Bros., translated to $14.6 million and a third-place debut. Its Audience Score was 74% and CinemaScore was B+. Superfly, a remake of the 1972 blaxploitation hit starring Curtis Mayfield, was similarly soft on the Tomatometer (54%), and finished seventh for the weekend with $6.3 million and has an $8.4 million total after rolling out Wednesday for Sony. That was behind holdovers Solo: A Star Wars Story ($9 million), Deadpool 2 ($8.8 million), and Hereditary ($7 million), which fell off just 48% in its second week, commendable for a horror movie.
The record-shattering debut by Incredibles 2, the 20th film released by Pixar since Toy Story in 1995, is the studio’s 18th to debut at No. 1. The Good Dinosaur was runner-up to the second week of the Hunger Games franchise finale Mockingjay – Part II with $39.2 million on Thanksgiving weekend in 2015. But the first Pixar release that failed to nab the top spot was the studio’s Inside Out. That Pete Doctor-directed tale exceeded expectations with a dynamic $90 million debut that topped the 2002 opening of The Incredibles to become the biggest ever for Pixar on this weekend in 2015. But even that wasn’t enough to overcome Jurassic World, which stomped to $106 million in its second weekend. This time around Disney and Pixar wisely rolled out before the reptiles went on a box office rampage.
One of the several ways that Steven Spielberg’s 1993 original Jurassic Park changed the game for Hollywood was that it was a true global blockbuster, the first major release to make more abroad than in the U.S. and Canada, which is the norm for big-budget “tentpole” movies today. The Universal Pictures International distribution team, under president Duncan Clark, clearly studied its history, and the proof is in this weekend’s foreign box office pudding. Fallen Kingdom brought in $173.6 million in its second weekend abroad and has now chomped a massive $370 million from overseas ahead of its North American debut on Friday. The global total for the five Jurassic films breezed past $4 billion on Sunday.
The 1993 original took in a record $627 million from abroad and more than a $1 billion worldwide. Twenty years later, Jurassic World decimated those numbers with $1.1 billion from overseas alone, and $1.67 billion globally. Matching that would be no small feat for Fallen Kingdom, particularly since its rollout has required some careful scheduling around the World Cup soccer tournament,which began Saturday and dominates the pop culture landscape in many nations.
Universal’s global marketing campaign, with a price tag at a reported $185 million, is among the largest the studio has mounted. It featured T-Rex and Raptor stunts in major cities on several continents as well as a barnstorm of the film’s staggered rollout territories that took stars Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, and director J.A. Bayona to Madrid, London, and Shanghai for premieres. Jurassic Park topped the $1 billion mark at the global box office thanks in part to a 2013 3D re-release that took in $32 million in China. That experience, which introduced the franchise to Chinese audiences, set the stage for the $229 million haul that made the Middle Kingdom the top foreign territory for Jurassic World, as well as the $111.9 million opening bounty scored by Fallen Kingdom in its debut in China this weekend.
Two limited releases with very low Tomatometer ratings landed just outside the top ten. Gotti, the long-gestating mob saga starring John Travolta with a Tomatometer score of 0%, brought in $1.67 million, while Yash Raj’s Race 3 (13%) was at $1.63 million. Vertical had Gotti in 503 theaters, 188 more than Race was running in.
Focus plans to expand Morgan Neville’s documentary on Fred Rodgers, Won’t You By My Neighbor, to more than 300 theaters next weekend after successfully widening it by 67 theaters this weekend. The film about the TV kids host, which has a Tomatometer rating of 99%, brought in $985,000 from 96 locations for a strong $10,253 per-screen average and now has a $1.69 million domestic total after two weeks.
RBG, the documentary on Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, crossed the $10 million mark for Magnolia Pictures in its seventh week of release.
Disney pushed A Wrinkle In Time, which opened in March, over the $100 million mark domestically with a special run in 245 theaters that brought in $1.7 million.
Fallen Kingdom is tracking for a domestic debut in the $145 million range, but its show of might abroad could build momentum for next weekend’s rollout. There’s only one comparable film by which to gauge the prospects for Fallen Kingdom, and that’s Jurassic World, which opened with $208 million and eventually rung up $1.2 billion worldwide. But that one came out 20 years after the debut of Spielberg’s original, and commanded the pop zeitgeist, so even those comparisons are somewhat skewed.
The raptors haven’t wowed reviewers so far (61% on the Tomatometer), and neither have the weekend’s other wide openers. Damsel, the Western comedy starring Robert Pattison and Mia Wasikowska from David and Nathan Zellner has the best number (80%), ahead of Boundaries, the Christopher Plummer-Vera Farmiga father-daughter road trip comedy (60%), and the Pascal Laugier horror film, Incident in a Ghostland, starring Crystal Reed, Taylor Hickson and Anastasia Phillips.
Also debuting this week are two well-regarded documentaries, The King (formerly The Promised Land), Jim Jarecki’s look at America through the prism of a road trip in Elvis Presley’s Rolls Royce (92% on the Tomatometer), and the as-yet unrated Spiral, Laura Fairrie’s look at anti-Semitism in France.
[box office figures via Box Office Mojo]