Earlier in the week, already low-tracking numbers for the new crop of films suggested that this weekend might be a bad example to use in considering how the current international health crisis was affecting movie-going. That was before American acting treasure Tom Hanks announced that he and his wife had tested positive for coronavirus, theaters began restricting attendance to 50 percent capacity, and a series of high-profile cancellations (A Quiet Place Part II, Mulan, F9), including one recurring cancellation (The New Mutants), resulted in no new wide releases for the next three weeks in theaters, some of which are taking the next step of closing down. All of that culminated in the lowest box office total since the 1990s. The industry will certainly place asterisks on the box office results for this trying period.
Pixar has only seen two second-weekend drops of more than 60 percent in their history for Cars 2 (-60.3 percent) and The Good Dinosaur. Due to decreased theatrical capacities and social-distancing, their latest film dropped a massive 73 percent. Onward still led the weekend’s box office with $10.5 million, but it has quickly dropped behind The Good Dinosaur’s pace ($15.3 million second weekend and $63.8 million after 10 days) to what, inevitably, will be the lowest-grossing film in the company’s 25-year history. The numbers could drop even further next week, making Onward just the fourth March release to have grossed $60 million in its first 10 days to not make it to $100 million. The others being 10,000 B.C., Battle: Los Angeles, and 2017’s Power Rangers.
Vin Diesel’s franchise-starting success appears to be on the wane. As a headliner, Diesel’s average film opening is $48.13 million. Remove his Fast & Furious franchise movies from that group, and the average goes down to $20.15 million. Take away the Riddick and xXx films, and it drops to $15.46 million. Now remove The Pacifier and add this weekend’s Bloodshot to the list of The Last Witch Hunter, Babylon A.D., and A Man Apart and it falls to just $10.15 million. A Man Apart — with the lowest production budget of those films at $36 million — was never a franchise play, but its opening of $11.01 million was higher than any of the other films, including Bloodshot, whose $9.3 million start is the weakest ever for a wide-release Diesel vehicle. The health crisis certainly did him no favors, but the film was only tracking around a $12 million opening before this week’s escalation. Neither number is good for the $45 million production, which has grossed a total of $25.6 million worldwide so far.
Looking at the top 10 in terms of success, Bad Boys for Life is the year’s most successful film to date, garnering around $75 million in profit so far after grossing over $417 million worldwide. The Invisible Man and its $7 million budget grossed another $6 million in its third weekend, bringing its total to $64.4 million domestic and over $122 million worldwide. It has the second-best profit of 2020 right now. In sixth place this week, but third place for 2020, is Sonic the Hedgehog, as it passed $306 million worldwide. Lionsgate’s faith-based release, I Still Believe, from directors Andrew and Jon Erwin, did the best of the new releases this week with $9.5 million. Unfortunately, its budget is reportedly around twice that of I Can Only Imagine’s $7 million, making a shot at profit now more unfeasible. That film from the Erwin’s grossed an incredible $83.4 million and is the highest-grossing film in the history of Roadside Attractions.
Autumn de Wilde’s 2020 version of Emma is doing OK with $10 million in North America and another $15 million overseas. Its $25 million total is better than Gwyneth Paltrow’s 1996 version fared (though its $22 million was all made Stateside). These are not Pride & Prejudice numbers but, like I Still Believe, not too bad if the budget is small. Universal picked a bad time to finally spring The Hunt into theaters; the film opened to just $5.3 million and now likely will not even match its $14 million production budget. The Hunt is third behind BlacKkKlansman ($15 million) and Glass ($20 million) as the most expensive Blumhouse production to date.
Last week’s The Way Back took a steep 69 percent drop, and its total stands at $13.4 million. Even with a $25 million budget, that is miles better than The Call of the Wild, which is only up to $62.1 million locally and $107 million globally and still chasing a $135 million price tag before prints and ads. The CGI-ed dog tale starring Harrison Ford at least outperformed Dolittle in the red for the year, but like all of the holdovers in the top 10 this week, it dropped between 60-75 percent from the week before.
Three new wide releases and a limited release that made the top 10 were no match combined for Captain Marvel’s second weekend take of $67.98 million, driving its haul to $264.88 million in its first 10 days. Paramount’s animated disappointment, Wonder Park, opened to second with $15.85 million with young-adult weepie Five Feet Apart taking third with $13.19 million. Sci-fi thriller, Captive State started way back in seventh with $3.13 million and was beaten by No Manches Frida 2, which grossed $3.83 million in just 472 theaters, 2,000 fewer than Captive. The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part finally crossed the $100 million mark in its sixth weekend. The top 10 films grossed $126.41 million and averaged 55% on the Tomatometer. This year’s top 10 grossed an estimated $50.35 million and averaged 67.5 percent.
Director John Krasinski took to social media to announce that his anticipated sequel A Quiet Place Part II has been postponed until further notice. For films still slated to open in limited release, check out what critics are saying about them here.
Thumbnail image: © 2020 Disney/Pixar
[box office figures via Box Office Mojo]