November 12, 2017

Behind the US/Worldwide Weekend Box Office – 11.12.2017


OPENINGS:  In the US, DADDY’S HOME 2 (Paramount) eked out a victory among the newcomers at $30M, thanks to a 6% family audience bump on Saturday.  That’s still 22% below the opening for the first Daddy’s Home, and it’s likely that spread will increase greatly through the week, since the original comedy opened on Christmas Day and had the benefit of the giant holiday box office.  If Daddy’s 2 drops 40% from its predecessor’s total to $90M, it probably won’t hit profit on $175M in worldwide production/marketing costs, unless it has more popularity overseas than the first, which earned only 38% of its total outside the US.

MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS (20th) was in 2nd place domestically at $28.2M (up 1% on Saturday), 25% below the opening of Gone Girl.  However, it thrived overseas with $45.8M for the weekend in 57 territories ($57.2M including last week’s UK opening).  If it can hold its older audience for the next few weeks, with little competition for that niche on the immediate horizon, it could be moderately profitable on $150M in worldwide costs.

HOLDOVERS:  THOR: RAGNAROK (Marvel/Disney) wasn’t seriously challenged for the weekend crown with $56M, keeping it on track for $300-325M in the US, which puts it in the middle of the Marvel box office universe.  Its 54% Weekend 2 drop was steeper than the 50% for Doctor Strange, but better than the 57% for Thor: the Dark World.  It’s roaring overseas, where it’s at $438.5M after a $75.9M weekend, and that should push it into the top half-dozen Marvel titles worldwide, among Spider-Man: Homecoming ($880M) and Guardians 2 ($863.6M).  The big question for Ragnarok is how much it will be affected by next weekend’s worldwide arrival of Justice League.

Week-to-week comparisons for A BAD MOMS CHRISTMAS (H Brothers/STX) benefit from the fact that its first Friday was its 3rd day of release, but nevertheless the comedy had a great hold, down just 31% in Weekend 2.  That’s better than the 41% drop for the first Bad Moms, which roughly doubled its total for its first 12 days of release.  If Xmas can do the same, it might reach $80M in the US, and at $125M worldwide (it has $6.7M in limited international release thus far), it should at least break even, although a third installment may be a stretch.

JIGSAW (Lionsgate) fell 48% to $3.4M, and will still probably end up at about $40M in the US.  It’s at $44.7M overseas, and may make a modest profit on low costs, although not enough to encourage further chapters of the Saw saga.

BOO 2! A MADEA CHRISTMAS (Lionsgate) lost 54% to $2.1M, and won’t get much above $50M, possibly the lowest-grossing title to feature the Madea brand.  (2005’s Diary of a Mad Black Woman is currently lowest at $50.6M.)

GEOSTORM (Skydance/RatPac/Warners) is all but done in the US, where it fell 52% to $1.5M, and may not get to $35M.  The red ink won’t be quite so dark thanks to its overseas total of $167.4M, although that’s still not enough to pay for its $250M in costs.

BLADE RUNNER 2049 (Alcon/Sony/Warners) is in a similar hole, down 39% to $1.4M in the US as it heads to $90M, and with $155M overseas that won’t cover its huge costs.  Its losses have been estimated at $80M all told.

LET THERE BE LIGHT (Atlas) added 20% more theatres but dropped 30% for a mediocre $1500 per-theatre average at 773.

LBJ (Electric) fell 55% and only averaged $800 at its 608 theatres, and won’t even get to $5M.

LIMITED RELEASES:  3 BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING, MISSOURI (Fox Searchlight) had a strong opening, averaging $80K in 4 NY/LA arthouses.  That average was 2nd best of the year behind LADY BIRD (A24), which expanded beautifully to 37 theatres with a $34K average, much better than Moonlight‘s $23K average at 36.  THE FLORIDA PROJECT (A24) continued its slow rollout, averaging $2500 at 229.  THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER (A24) averaged $2K at 238.  WONDERSTRUCK (Amazon/Roadside) was several notches below with a $900 average at 261.  The documentary JANE (Abramorama/NatGeo) widened to 96 with a $2400 average.  LAST FLAG FLYING (Amazon/Lionsgate) isn’t finding takers with a $5400 average at only 32 theatres.  THE SQUARE (Magnolia) averaged $3100 at 50.  NOVITIATE (Sony Classics) averaged $1900 at 29.

NEXT WEEKEND:  As noted, the giant arrival is JUSTICE LEAGUE (DC/Warners).  Counterprogramming will aim at families, with the animated THE STAR (Columbia/Sony) and the drama WONDER (Lionsgate).  In addition, ROMAN J. ISRAEL, ESQ (Columbia/Sony), re-edited from its unsteady Toronto premiere, begins with a limited release.


About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."