Weekend Box Office

Weekend Box Office Results: Super Mario Holds on with Impressive Third Week

Mario and friends continued to climb the box office charts, earning the seventh-best third weekend total of all time as it crossed over $800 million worldwide.

by | April 24, 2023 | Comments


There is a very good possibility that the race for the top grossing film of the year is already over. That’s saying a lot, given we haven’t even tapped into the affluent summer season yet with all its big sequels and Barbie mayhem. But the numbers for The Super Mario Bros. Movie are impossible to look away from. Even if we stopped counting after this weekend, the odds would still be in its favor to be the top grossing film of 2023. But it’s here for at least another weekend in the No. 1 slot before the Guardians of the Galaxy make a valiant but perhaps fruitless launch to defeat the plumber brothers.

King of the Crop: Super Mario Holds on with Impressive Third Week

Let’s look at those numbers, shall we? For the third straight week, The Super Mario Bros. Movie led the box office, earning $58.2 million. That is the seventh-best third weekend of all time behind two Avatars, two Avengers movies, a Star Wars movie, and Black Panther. Is there any film scheduled for release the rest of this year that will be able to match that on weekend three? Super Mario has already grossed $434 million in 19 days; that’s the 14th-best total ever in that stretch, just $10 million behind 2019’s The Lion King, which had a $38.5 million third weekend during the summer. Mario has still yet to catch the pace of Incredibles 2, which it remains $26 million behind in total, but even that $608-million juggernaut earned just $46.4 million in its third weekend. Somewhere between $550-600 million appears to be Mario’s endgame at this moment. Perhaps another billion-dollar movie will come along to best its ultimate global total, but on the domestic front, it appears to be game over.

Rotten Returns: Guy Ritchie’s The Covenant Stumbles

Guy Ritchie may be getting the best reviews of his career with the aptly titled Guy Ritchie’s The Covenant, but this one is going in the loss column financially. Besting both Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and The Gentlemen’s 75% scores with an 82% on the Tomatometer (currently), Guy Ritchie’s The Covenant (not to be confused with The Covenant by Renny Harlin) finished in third place this weekend with $6.2 million, a paltry number compounded by the $55 million production budget it carried. This is the second loser for Ritchie this year after Operation Fortune finished with just $6.4 million domestic (and $37.5 million globally) on a $50 million pricetag.

The Top 10 and Beyond: Evil Dead Rise Posts Solid Debut over Horror Competitors and Older Titles

The big new release of the week is a film that was initially set to be a streaming-only release. Someone at Warner Bros. ultimately knew better and got Evil Dead Rise back on the theatrical schedule where it grossed $24.5 million this weekend. That is almost $25 million more than it would have seen just sitting on HBO MAX, and it is going to be a hit for the studio coming off the disastrous Shazam! Fury of the Gods. The 2013 Evil Dead remake released by Sony opened to $25.7 million and that $17 million production went on to gross over $54 million. Lee Cronin’s Rise cost a couple million less, and the critically-acclaimed horror entry (it’s Certified Fresh at 85%) should be in profit relatively soon. However, horror in April from 2000 on (apart from A Quiet Place) has not generated much longevity. Since 2005 the 10 horror films released this month to open with $15 million or more have had an average multiple of just 2.18, with 2005’s The Amityville Horror remake even bumping that number up with a 2.77. That would leave Evil Dead Rise with a final take a little over $50 million. That’s still more than it would have made on HBO MAX.

Staying in the horror realm, Ari Aster’s Beau is Afraid expanded out to 926 theaters this weekend and grossed $2.8 million. Last year A24 opened Alex Garland’s Men to $3.29 million in 2,212 theaters and Ti West’s Pearl to $3.12 million in 2,935 theaters. The studio initially went wider with Aster’s first two films; Hereditary made $13.7 million in its opening weekend and Midsommar did $6.5 million after earning over $4 million previously on Wednesday and Thursday. The latter was just shy of two and a half hours, and Beau now comes in at a minute shy of three. Its path currently is similar to that of Jason Reitman’s Young Adult, which opened to $310,263 in 8 theaters (Beau did $320,396 in four) and grossed $3.4 million when it expanded the next week to 986 theaters. It went on to gross over $16 million. Beau’s final number will depend on whether its divisive word-of-mouth will lead to avoidance or curiosity.

Last week’s horror victor, The Pope’s Exorcist, fell from second back to seventh with $3.3 million. Its total stands just below $15 million domestic, but with over $52 million worldwide, it will be in profit sometime this week. Spending its fifth week in the top five is John Wick: Chapter 4 with $5.7 million. That brings its total to nearly $169 million, and it’s still on path for around $180 million. With over $358 million worldwide, it is the highest-grossing entry in the franchise. Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves held well enough to increase its ultimate estimate beyond $85 million. It fell 30% this week to $5.4 million, but with only $82 million domestic and $177 million globally, it is still going to be a $100+ million losing investment.

Ben Affleck’s Air continues to mount a path towards $50 million. After a 37% drop to $4.9 million this week, its total stands at $41.2 million. Universal’s Renfield looks no better this week, falling 61% to $3.1 million. The $65 million production has grossed a total of $17.9 million worldwide and looks to be the studio’s biggest loser since last year’s The 355. Crunchyroll’s Suzume fell 68% to $1.6 million, bringing its total to $8.4 million. Searchlight opened Chevalier with Kelvin Harrison Jr. into 1,275 theaters this week and it grossed $1.5 million. Ray Romano’s directorial debut, Somewhere in Queens, grossed $681,770 in 602 theaters.

On the Vine: Judy Blume and George Foreman Hit the Big Screen

Lionsgate is hoping to find success with Judy Blume (whose documentary was just released this week) with the adaptation of her beloved Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. The film, currently sitting at 96% with critics, was directed by Kelly Fremon Craig, whose last film, The Edge of Seventeen with Hailee Steinfeld, is Certified Fresh at 94%. Sony is also releasing the biopic once simply known as Heart of a Lion. Now it is called Big George Foreman: The Miraculous Story of the Once and Future Heavyweight Champion of the World and it is not being screened for critics.

Full List of Box Office Results: April 21-23, 2023

59% The Super Mario Bros. Movie (2023)

  • $58.2 million ($434.3 million total)

84% Evil Dead Rise (2023)

  • $24.5 million ($24.5 million total)

83% Guy Ritchie's The Covenant (2023)

  • $6.2 million ($6.2 million total)

94% John Wick: Chapter 4 (2023)

  • $5.7 million ($168.9 million total)

91% Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves (2023)

  • $5.4 million ($82.1 million total)

93% Air (2023)

  • $4.9 million ($41.2 million total)

50% The Pope's Exorcist (2023)

  • $3.3 million ($3.3 million total)

58% Renfield (2023)

  • $3.1 million ($13.6 million total)

68% Beau Is Afraid (2023)

  • $2.8 million ($3.1 million total)

96% Suzume (2022)

  • $1.6 million ($1.6 million total)

Erik Childress can be heard each week evaluating box office on Business First AM with Angela Miles and his Movie Madness Podcast.

[box office figures via Box Office Mojo]

Thumbnail image by ©Universal Pictures

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