June 3, 2018

Behind the US/Worldwide Weekend Box Office – 6.3.2018


OPENINGS:  ADRIFT (H Brothers/STX) was at the top of a very low hill with $11.5M (plus $350K in 9 overseas territories).  STX, which only has domestic rights, is claiming to be on the hook for only around $30M in limited production and marketing costs, but even at that number, it may not break even, especially with Ocean’s 8 coming for Adrift‘s largely female audience next weekend.

UPGRADE (Blumhouse/BH Tilt/Universal) opened with $4.5M, the 2nd best start for the micro-budget label after the $5M for The Darkness (which was in 300 more theatres than Upgrade).  That title reached $10.8M in the US, and Upgrade has a chance of doing at least that well, thanks to strong reviews that should drive word of mouth.

ACTION POINT (Paramount) was a complete disaster at $2.3M, and it’s easy to believe the rumors that Paramount tried to unload the thing in advance but found no takers.

HOLDOVERS:  Things remained grim for SOLO (Lucasfilm/Disney), which toppled by 65% to $29.3M in its 2nd weekend.  It seems to be headed for $210M in the US, which would put it at or near the bottom of all live action Star Wars releases, even with no adjustment for inflation.  (The original run of The Empire Strikes Back earned $209.4M in 1980 dollars.)  It won’t be rescued overseas, where it’s at $115.3M after a $30.3M weekend in all major territories except Japan.  A worldwide total of $400M would probably mean a loss of $100M+ for Disney.  The studio’s fear here won’t be so much that the franchise can only sustain one release per 12-month period, which would be annoying but easily dealt with.  The much bigger problem would be if Solo‘s failure indicates audience resistance to any Star Wars story that isn’t part of the Skywalker narrative, which could limit plans for “universe” trilogies by Rian Johnson and Benioff & Weiss that are in development.

DEADPOOL 2 (20th) was much steadier, down 46% to $23.3M in its 3rd weekend, on its way to $300M in the US with far lower costs than Solo‘s.  It’s also sturdy overseas, where it’s at $344M after a $41.6M weekend that included its opening in Japan.  (It’s now opened in all major markets except China, where it won’t be permitted a run.)  Its worldwide total should be within 10% of the first Deadpool‘s $783.1M.

AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR (Marvel/Disney) dipped 40% in its 6th weekend to $10.4M, heading to $660M in the US.  Its massive international take is $1.32B after a $24.3M weekend, and with $1.97B worldwide, it seems able to push to the $2B mark, which would make it the 4th film in history (after Avatar, Titanic and The Force Awakens) to get there.

BOOK CLUB (Endeavor Content/Paramount) is holding extremely well with its target audience, down 33% in its 3rd weekend to $6.8M, and now likely to reach $60M+ in the US.  It also has $1.1M from the UK.

LIFE OF THE PARTY (New Line/Warners), with a similar appeal, dropped 36% in its 4th weekend to $3.5M, and will hope to reach $55M in the US.  The lower-budgeted BREAKING IN (Universal) was down 44% in its 4th to $2.8M (plus a $2.5M total overseas) as it reaches toward $45M.

The quiet success story of the season continues to be RBG (Magnolia), down a scant 15% for a $1.1M weekend at only 432 theatres.  RBG has now passed the $7.1M total of last year’s documentary hit I Am Not Your Negro, and could get well past $10M before it’s done.

LIMITED RELEASE:  The only notable arrival was AMERICAN ANIMALS (Orchard/MoviePass), with a solid $35K per-theatre average at 4 NY/LA arthouses.  FIRST REFORMED (A24) expanded to 91 theatres with an OK $5K average.  THE RIDER (Sony Classics) widened to 224 with a slender $1100 average.  ON CHESIL BEACH (Bleecker Street) averaged $1600 at 89.  THE SEAGULL (Sony Classics), now at 52, averaged $2500.  The documentary THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO ANDRE (Magnolia) averaged $3900 at 21.  MARY SHELLEY (IFC, also on VOD) averaged $1600 at 9.

NEXT WEEKEND:  OCEAN’S 8 (Warners) is the A-list title, but the acclaimed horror movie HEREDITARY (A24) could break out, and HOTEL ARTEMIS (Global Road) also gets a wide release.  Limited releases include Sundance features HEARTS BEAT LOUD (Gunpowder & Sky) and WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR (Focus/Universal),


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."