Weekend Box Office

Weekend Box Office Results: Sonic Barely Suppresses The Call of the Wild

Both live-action/animation hybrid family films were neck and neck until the blue speedster took the lead on the weekend of February 21-23.

by | February 23, 2020 | Comments

It was a flip-floppy kind of weekend for the top spot at the box office, as estimates from Friday-to-Saturday teetered between two films at #1. Ultimately, Sega’s blue alien rodent maintained its lead for a second straight week as it gets a little closer to becoming Paramount’s first success story since last summer’s Dora the Explorer movie. The new CGI animal film nearly rallied to win the weekend in what might seem like a victory for the newly-rebrandished 20th Century Studios, except it has a long journey ahead before the word “success” can be attributed to it.


King of the Crop: Sonic Leads the Pack Again

Sonic the Hedgehog led the box office for a second straight week with $26.3 million. That puts its total at $107 million in its first ten days, the sixth best ever for a film opening in February and just the seventh film to reach $100 million in that period. It has also passed $200 million worldwide. Now, if it can gross another $52 million across the globe it will indeed reach profit for Paramount if the lowball estimates of an $85 million budget (with all that FX retouching) is to be believed. At this rate, it will have no problem passing Pokemon: Detective Pikachu to become the highest-grossing video game adaptation ever. Pikachu had a $25.1 million second weekend and was only up to $94.2 million in two days.



Rotten Returns: Brahms Continues Trend of Dismal Horror in 2020

The bad streak for horror continues, as nobody came out for Brahms: The Boy II. STX withheld the movie from critics and got themselves $375,000 in Thursday night previews, which was a bit more than the $350,000 that The Lazarus Effect made back in 2015. Only, that film went on to gross $10.2 million that weekend and Brahms’ $5.9 million is much closer to Pride & Prejudice and Zombies ($5.32 million) which had $300,000 in previews. When reviews started to trickle in on Friday, The Boy II was resting at 0% for much of the day, before it managed to get out of the single digits and currently sits at 11%. That is still in the territory of films like Rings (8%), Slender Man (7%), and the 2017 Flatliners remake (4%). Even the film’s light $10 million budget isn’t going to be recouped.


The Top 10 And Beyond: The Call of the Wild Isn’t Looking Good

The Call of the Wild may actually be looking at more rotten returns than Brahms, but let’s at least start with a few positives. The new adaptation of Jack London’s classic novel with Harrison Ford opened to $24.8 million, higher than the $17-20 million projected for it. Among CGI dog movies, the number is not exactly Scooby-Doo ($54.15 million) or Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed ($29.43 million), but it is still a higher opening than Eight Below ($20.18 million), which went on to gross over $81 million when it opened in February of 2006. (Those numbers with inflation would be about $25.83 and $104.43 million today.) The problem is that The Call of the Wild’s budget has been reported as anywhere from $125-150 million. That is not far away from Dolittle, which began with $21.84 million and is up to $74 million domestically and $204 million worldwide. Even if we split the difference on those budget numbers, The Call of the Wild is going to need to go north of $400 million to break even, and it’s only made 10% of that worldwide in its opening weekend. This may not be Dark Phoenix bad, but it could still end up as one of the biggest losers in the long history of Fox — not a great way to launch 20th Century Studios.

Birds of Prey dropped another 59% this weekend to $7 million, bringing its total up to $72.5 million. Last year’s Alita had less than Birds with $70.2 million but had a higher third weekend with $7.22 million. It finished with $85.7 million. That suggests Birds will finish somewhere between $86-92 million domestically. As of this weekend, after just another $13 million overseas, it has grossed $173 million worldwide. It will need over $250 million just to break even.

Sony’s Bad Boys for Life earned another $5.8 million, bringing its total up to $191.1 million after 38 days of release. That places it right in the middle of a group of films that includes World War Z, SPECTRE, The Mummy Returns, and Superman Returns, among others. What do they all have in common? Each got over the $200 million mark; Bad Boys’ global total is over $390 million. Sony’s Jumanji: The Next Level also continues to go strong, bringing its domestic total to $311 million and worldwide total to $787 million, while Fantasy Island — under the Blumhouse banner — dropped 66% and is up over $20 million.

The films that were battling it out for Best Picture remain in the Top Ten, with Parasite drawing in another $3.2 million and bringing its total to nearly $49 million, officially the fifth-highest grossing film not in the English language. It is less than $5 million away from passing Hero for fourth place. Sam Mendes’ 1917 is also rising up a very specific chart, ranking up there with the highest-grossing films about war. Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper remains the chart-topper, while the next three films on the list are about the same war – Saving Private Ryan, Pearl Harbor and Dunkirk. Now in fifth place with almost $152 million, 1917 can boast it is the highest-grossing film ever about WWI. That’s good news for Universal, still staring down the losses of Cats and Dolittle, and they can add The Photograph to that list, as it dropped a whopping 77% in its second weekend down to $2.8 million. With a total under $18 million, that is not going to be near enough to recoup its $16 million budget.

Focus’ new remake of Jane Austen’s Emma. (87%) did not exactly break any records this week, but it can brag about having the current best per-theater-average of the young year. In five theaters this weekend, the film starring Anya Taylor-Joy in the title role grossed $230,000 for a $46,000 PTA. Amazon’s Seberg (38%), which was pushed back from its original December release, grossed $60,487 in three theaters, giving it the second best PTA of the year. In 357 theaters, Impractical Jokers: The Movie (57%) just missed the top ten, grossing $2.60 million, a PTA just behind Oscilloscope’s CatVideoFest2020, which grossed $220,150 in 30 theaters. Magnolia’s Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and the Band (77%) had the third best PTA of the week with $41,500 in four theaters. Neon’s Portrait of a Lady on Fire (98%) expanded to 130 theaters and grossed $715,000. Its total stands at $1.45 million.



This Time Last Year: The How to Train Your Dragon Trilogy Comes to an End

The conclusion of the How To Train Your Dragon trilogy led the box office when The Hidden World opened to $55 million, making up 49.72% of the Top Ten grosses. The wrestling comedy Fighting with My Family went into wide release but only finished fourth with $7.81 million. The rest of the top five were made up by Alita: Battle Angel ($12.34 million), The Lego Movie 2 ($9.68 million), and Isn’t It Romantic ($7.12 million). Roadside’s faith-based brotherly football film, Run the Race, opened in 853 theaters and finished tenth with $2.16 million. The Top Ten films grossed a total of $110.66 million and averaged 66.3% on the Tomatometer. This year’s Top Ten grossed an estimated $87.39 Million and averaged 63.6% with critics.


On the Vine: Elisabeth Moss is Tormented by The Invisible Man

The Dark Universe may have disbanded, but the Universal horror films are still getting their reboots. This time, it will be Leigh Whannell’s The Invisible Man, with Elisabeth Moss taking a more stalker-ish Hollow Man approach to reminding audiences to believe women. It is the primary wide release for the week and should have an easy path to the top spot at the box office, giving this year’s flailing horror numbers a shot in the arm. For more films opening in limited release, check out the list HERE.


The Full Top 10: February 21-23

  1. Sonic the Hedgehog (2020) 63% – $26.3 million ($106.6 million total)
  2. The Call of the Wild (2020) 62% – $24.82 million ($24.82 million total)
  3. Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (2020) 79% – $7 million ($72.53 million total)
  4. Brahms: The Boy II (2020) 11% – $5.9 million ($5.9 million total)
  5. Bad Boys for Life (2020) 76% – $5.86 million ($191.18 million total)
  6. 1917 (2020) 89% – $5.4 million ($151.99 million total)
  7. Fantasy Island (2020) 8% – $4.19 million ($20.18 million total)
  8. Parasite (Gisaengchung) (2019) 98% – $3.12 million ($48.94 million total)
  9. Jumanji: The Next Level (2019) 71% – $3 million ($310.96 million total)
  10. The Photograph (2020) 75% – $2.8 million ($17.65 million total)

Thumbnail image by Paramount Pictures


Erik Childress can be heard each week evaluating box office on WGN Radio with Nick Digilio as well as on Business First AM with Angela Miles and his Movie Madness Podcast.

[box office figures via Box Office Mojo]

Tag Cloud

lord of the rings reboot Chernobyl Video Games Sci-Fi Vudu Superheroes technology New York Comic Con OneApp SDCC tv talk Amazon Prime psychological thriller E! Hallmark Christmas movies Tokyo Olympics serial killer hidden camera APB PBS Musicals award winner Schedule marvel cinematic universe twilight universal monsters movies The Walt Disney Company period drama 90s Oscars President Song of Ice and Fire BBC revenge mockumentary reviews archives foreign worst movies Esquire doctor who Extras TCM concert social media HBO 2019 Amazon Prime Video TCA 2017 spanish language Tumblr dark Trophy Talk YouTube Premium MCU 2018 spider-man YouTube Red criterion live action Tomatazos Marvel Television Reality discovery FXX Photos First Look Pop TV Drama Black Mirror movie TCA Red Carpet LGBTQ 99% aliens Hear Us Out television X-Men Sundance Year in Review TCA Winter 2020 theme song TCA Awards rotten Apple Super Bowl olympics MTV DirecTV zombie Country Pixar dogs game show Reality Competition comic The Academy Cartoon Network cancelled television classics BET cooking elevated horror BAFTA Hulu TV Land History romantic comedy Fall TV joker golden globe awards Brie Larson CBS Family natural history rom-coms Music Arrowverse Cosplay The CW Trivia emmy awards popular kaiju a nightmare on elm street BET Awards Amazon book historical drama Creative Arts Emmys WGN Mary Poppins Returns USA Pirates Certified Fresh Adult Swim facebook Spike satire Black History Month game of thrones finale boxoffice all-time 2015 know your critic renewed TV shows romance Exclusive Video Ellie Kemper kids TV renewals festival GoT Pride Month Awards Tour 2021 Academy Awards 1990s target Syfy heist movie Crunchyroll asian-american Biopics independent A&E PaleyFest Calendar diversity monster movies screenings Showtime Best and Worst streaming movies book adaptation christmas movies talk show 2020 Bravo Superheroe crime drama Christmas The Arrangement Toys based on movie dceu scene in color Apple TV+ Marathons die hard golden globes ABC Family laika Comedy stoner Women's History Month Winners biography OWN Shudder DC Comics Pacific Islander obituary Epix halloween Television Academy USA Network 4/20 RT History Sony Pictures singing competition parents teaser political drama Grammys new york Sundance TV comic books IFC Films YouTube deadpool child's play CMT sequel Ovation Comics on TV psycho Disney Channel spanish Trailer Musical documentary Travel Channel spy thriller Amazon Studios 21st Century Fox Awards Thanksgiving HBO Max ghosts hispanic 007 Anna Paquin Captain marvel italian El Rey First Reviews Quiz versus Lifetime Christmas movies streaming docuseries Martial Arts Nominations ESPN Logo ratings superhero animated Marvel cars The Witch international Funimation telelvision Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt films DC streaming service spinoff TV One indie RT21 WarnerMedia NBC IFC Disney+ Disney Plus scary movies breaking bad GIFs crime Rocketman A24 SXSW Mary poppins Image Comics 24 frames harry potter werewolf new star wars movies crime thriller YA Election canceled Comic Book Starz franchise Kids & Family The Purge Holiday Columbia Pictures Broadway blockbuster Apple TV Plus critics pirates of the caribbean rt archives travel Freeform basketball DGA scorecard Mudbound jurassic park 2016 Netflix Christmas movies ABC Signature LGBT FX cancelled zombies Universal wonder woman Western black TBS blaxploitation Ghostbusters Disney streaming service ITV 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards anthology Chilling Adventures of Sabrina comics TV movies disaster spain CBS All Access science fiction MSNBC Wes Anderson Rock richard e. Grant Binge Guide news latino video 72 Emmy Awards dc new zealand japanese Star Wars series ViacomCBS toronto dragons PlayStation Film Festival green book children's TV Marvel Studios comiccon Cannes Hallmark Stephen King Pop Countdown Mindy Kaling TruTV Watching Series Baby Yoda Fantasy directors supernatural mutant Nat Geo Teen festivals VH1 justice league cops Masterpiece Paramount Plus strong female leads Food Network Sneak Peek war nature Winter TV nfl Spectrum Originals CW Seed women adventure batman 93rd Oscars NBA GLAAD BBC America transformers james bond Paramount Network kong ABC rotten movies we love Summer fresh witnail blockbusters adenture what to watch Dark Horse Comics hist medical drama HBO Go TV Britbox sequels cults chucky documentaries Spring TV TLC slashers australia Polls and Games Turner Classic Movies AMC best 45 ID Sundance Now Emmy Nominations cinemax BBC One king kong toy story San Diego Comic-Con Fox Searchlight Avengers prank police drama casting unscripted jamie lee curtis cartoon canceled TV shows Disney Star Trek cancelled TV shows Lucasfilm Lifetime cats Elton John docudrama Lionsgate razzies 20th Century Fox Television Critics Association halloween tv thriller Writers Guild of America space crossover SundanceTV Tarantino 71st Emmy Awards Classic Film Legendary FX on Hulu Peacock TIFF saw name the review boxing legend Crackle Horror robots Interview Action south america Netflix Holidays DC Universe worst trailers Comic-Con@Home 2021 godzilla french Comedy Central Podcast See It Skip It sports quibi japan binge Warner Bros. Emmys Turner zero dark thirty comedies sag awards free movies anime Endgame adaptation Walt Disney Pictures hollywood NYCC 2017 remakes screen actors guild miniseries CNN Rom-Com FOX cancelled TV series Acorn TV National Geographic sitcom Tubi aapi Alien TNT Animation high school Set visit venice The Walking Dead Character Guide stand-up comedy Film nbcuniversal Premiere Dates Nickelodeon mission: impossible video on demand Heroines Disney Plus suspense Rocky Discovery Channel true crime Opinion American Society of Cinematographers football E3 politics indiana jones Fox News dramedy Mary Tyler Moore superman VICE Pet Sematary Mystery Valentine's Day VOD Box Office Shondaland stop motion Paramount composers Infographic fast and furious vampires