Weekend Box Office

Weekend Box Office Results: What Raya and the Last Dragon's $8.6 Million Could Mean For the Future of Moviegoing

Nobody wanted a number that low, but there are signs of hope. Meanwhile, Chaos Walking and Boogie disappoint while Tom & Jerry proves a force on the weekend of March 5-7, 2021.

by | March 7, 2021 | Comments

Movie theaters are reopening in New York City — some of them anyway. And to 25% capacity. Vaccination levels are exceeding estimations from January and now we have been told that vaccines will be available for every American by the end of May. Normalcy is seemingly coming and people can sense it, especially those at the movie studios who continue to make schedule moves. The waters are being tested. After the numbers posted by Tom & Jerry last week does the performance of Raya and the Last Dragon tell us anything more? Well, yes. And no.


King of the Crop: Raya’s $8.6 Million Opening Might Be A Sign Of Hope – And Not Quite As Soft As It Seems

(Photo by ©Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture)

Disney’s Raya and the Last Dragon is yet another test of the theatrical/streaming model. Back in September the studio tried Mulan on for size with its Premier Access pricing on Disney+. The result was not nearly as lucrative as they had hoped and it surely has been a factor in the way they have weathered the storm with the release of Black Widow, still scheduled for May 7 in theaters.

Mulan only played overseas in theaters and the response to the film was mixed in general (it’s Certified Fresh on the Tomatometer but has a Rotten Audience Score of 49%). So we did not have quite the same measuring stick of a day-and-date release with streaming on top of theatrical. That changed with the Warner Bros./HBO MAX deal and began with Wonder Woman 1984 over Christmas weekend. That film opened to $16.7 million over the holiday with COVID spikes still raging and an option to sit at home comfortably with a HBO MAX subscription for the cost of less than a single ticket price in some markets. That film went on to gross $44 million to date (with another $117 million internationally) and is the third-highest grossing film U.S. theaters have had since last March.

Tenet

(Photo by Warner Bros.)

The same studio’s delayed Tenet grossed $57.9 million and The Croods: A New Age has grossed over $53.6 million and most of that actually came after it hit VOD on its 24th day of release. It grossed $25.02 million in theaters up to that point. Flash-forward to last weekend – the first non-holiday weekend since March 13-15, 2020, to post an overall gross of over $20 million, and just the third overall, when Tom & Jerry opened to $14.1 million. That was the second-best opening of that timespan to Wonder Woman 1984’s $16.7 million. (Tenet’s $20.2 million also included previews from Tuesday and Wednesday of earlier that week.) That means despite the availability of the HBO MAX option, folks still opted to give those films the best openings of the pandemic era. This brings us to the latest family offering from Disney.

Disney – and, frankly, the whole industry – would have loved to have seen a $20 million opening for Raya and the Last Dragon. Even just a few million above Tom & Jerry would have sufficed – something to show that, as vaccinations increase and major markets begin to open again, the numbers are headed in the right direction. An $8.6 million start is not what anyone had hoped. After all, a $30 premium price tag at home is double what a month’s subscription to HBO MAX costs and Tom & Jerry opened around 70% higher just a week earlier. (Par for the course, Disney has not released any figures on Raya’s streaming performance.) Sure, Tom & Jerry is an established property over the new world-building of Raya, which also opened in 400 fewer theaters, partially thanks to Disney unable to come to terms with bookings at Cinemark, but can it still be spun as a positive?

Tom and Jerry 2021

(Photo by Warner Bros.)

Another way to look at it is simply within the numbers produced by a similar theater output. Tom & Jerry opened in 2,475 theaters with a $5,701 per-theater-average. Here are the best openings for films opening between 2,400-2,500 theaters from 2010-2020: Into the Woods ($31.05 million), Tyler Perry’s A Madea Family Funeral ($27.06), All Eyez On Me ($26.43), Heaven is For Real ($22.50), Legion ($17.50), Death at a Funeral ($16.21), The Crazies ($16.06), Den of Thieves ($15.20), Tom & Jerry ($14.11), Nobody’s Fool ($13.74).

Not bad considering Tom & Jerry opened with theaters operating at minimal capacity and none opened in New York City. The animated/live-action hybrid grossed another $6.6 million this weekend. That’s a 53% drop from its opening. The WB/HBO MAX hybrid releases, Wonder Woman 1984 and The Little Things dropped 67.1% and 55.3%, respectively, in their second weekends, so those numbers are headed in the right direction for WB. Tom & Jerry’s total stands at $22.9 million, just behind The New Mutants’ $23.8 million gross – the fourth-highest during the pandemic.

Now let’s look at Raya and the Last Dragon, which opened in 2,045 theaters with an estimated $4,205 per-theater-average, and the films from 2010-2020 that also opened between 2,000-2,100 theaters: Think Like a Man ($33.63 million), The Best Man Holiday ($30.10), Tyler Perry’s Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor ($21.64), Tyler Perry’s Acrimony ($17.17), Jumping the Broom ($15.21), Super Troopers 2 ($15.18), Harriet ($11.67), Annihilation ($11.07), The Hundred-Foot Journey ($10.97), Cloud Atlas ($9.61), Baggage Claim  ($9.03), The Witch ($8.80), Raya and the Last Dragon ($8.6), The Switch ($8.43), Black and Blue ($8.37), Wanderlust ($6.52).

It’s a little bit further down the list, but again, theaters are mostly working with 25% capacity on the nearly one-year anniversary of the worst pandemic in 100 years. Raya and the Last Dragon is only the fifth film to open in over 1,000 theaters during this time to post a per-theater-average over $4,000. In normal times that would be a disaster. Now, it’s a hopeful sign that we have had that happen two weeks in a row. That’s where we are. In a week-by-week game now seeking the signs that normalcy is coming and each week shall be judged accordingly.


Lesser Returns: Chaos Walking and Boogie Fail to Pull People From Their Homes

Chaos Walking

(Photo by © Lionsgate)

Family films and wannabe blockbusters are the only films garnering moviegoer’s interest enough right now to get them to leave the house. Chaos Walking may have once believed itself to be the latter, but it was not to be. In a glass-half-full way of thinking, $3.8 million is the fourth best opening of 2021 behind Tom & Jerry, Raya and the Last Dragon, and The Little Things ($4.7 million), but that’s with a $100 million price tag and no streaming profits to think of yet. The basketball drama, Boogie, had the sixth best opening of the year behind those four films and Liam Neeson’s The Marksman ($3.1 million), starting with just $1.2 million.


On these Dates In Box Office History…

How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World

(Photo by @ Universal)

March 5: Two years ago, How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World grossed $2.6 million on this day to cross the $100 million mark on its 12th day of release. A big record was broken in 2010 when Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland posted the highest Friday opening ever in the month of March with a $40.8 million start. That bested the three-year record of Zack Snyder’s 300, which opened to $28.1 million. Alice lost the record two years later to The Hunger Games and currently ranks fifth behind that, Batman v Superman, 2017’s Beauty and the Beast, and Captain Marvel.

March 6: The only major milestone crossed on this day also occurred in 2010 when The Blind Side grossed $636,218 on day 107 of its release to cross the $250 million line. Sandra Bullock had won the Oscar for her performance just one week earlier.

March 7: In 2017, The Lego Batman Movie made $820,416 to pass $150 million at the box office on its 26th day. It was also the day that Alice In Wonderland became the first film ever in March to gross over $100 million in its opening weekend. Its $116.1 million remains the fifth best opening ever in this month.


What Should Have Been: A Different Tom Holland Sci-F Epic And More Pranks

Raya and the Last Dragon was originally supposed to open over the Thanksgiving holiday last year on November 25. Originally, we were supposed to get the fourth entry in the Jackass film series and a different Tom Holland science-fiction epic in Uncharted. Jackass 4 is now slated to arrive on September 3 and the video game adaptation is now charted for February 11, 2022.


Full List of Box Office Results: March 5-7, 2021

  • $8.6 million ($8.6 million total)

  • $6.62 million ($22.96 million total)

  • $3.83 million ($3.83 million total)

  • $1.2 million ($1.2 million total)

  • $780,000 ($53.61 million total)

  • $550,000 ($13.69 million total)

  • $511,000 ($44.45 million total)

  • $500,000 ($13 million total)

  • $282,000 million ($4.47 million total)

  • $260,000 ($14.4 million total)


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

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