According To Forbes , Justice League earned a decent $16.5 million (+94% from Thanksgiving) on its second Friday of release. That’s a drop of just 57% from its opening day. That’s (thanks to the holiday) a smaller Friday-to-Friday drop than Man of Steel (-77%), Batman v Superman (-81%), Suicide Squad (-79%) and even Wonder Woman (-58%). WB’s strategy, intentional or not, of using the holiday to blunt that second-weekend plunge seems to be working for now.
But for Justice League, since it’s a pre-Thanksgiving release, we’re using comparisons to prior pre-Thanksgiving fantasy biggies. Even on that scale this is a solid hold. It’s a smaller drop than Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 1 (-66%) and all four “opened in November” Twilight sequels. And it’s just over the Hunger Games sequels (-55%, -56% and -53%). Of course, it’s way below the mere 38% drop of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and the earlier Harry Potter films.
Honestly, this hold, which points to an over/under $40 million second weekend (-57%) and over/under $55m five-day frame, is right in the middle in terms of “D’oh!” and “Wohoo!” The numbers are still damn mediocre for a Justice League movie. But the hold, while not Phantom Menace-worthy, is just decent enough to hope for two weeks of solid play before Walt Disney’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
The good news is that, with $147 million domestic and $244m overseas (along with whatever it made overseas yesterday), the film has certainly crossed $400m worldwide as of today. It is still doing around double its domestic business overseas, which means that the worst-case scenario (an opening like Wonder Woman, but with legs like Batman v Superman and a 50/50 domestic/overseas split like The Dark Knight) isn’t coming to pass.
But we’re still dealing with a Justice League movie that will make less in ten days than The Avengers, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Iron Man 3 and Captain America: Civil War earned in their first Fri-Sun weekend. Heck, its $172 million ten-day total will barely be above the $166m opening weekend for Batman v Superman. I’m doing my best to not kick the movie while it’s down, but these are not good numbers. Warner Bros./Time Warner Inc. wanted Return of the King, but ended up with The Matrix Revolutions.
The other big holdover news is, again, Wonder. The Lionsgate crowdpleaser earned $8.75 million (+122% from Thanksgiving) on Friday, which is just -9% from its initial Friday. No, it’s no longer quite in the same league as The Blind Side, but it’s still poised to be the closest comparison since that Sandra Bullock smash ($34m debut/$256m domestic total) back in 2009. And Lionsgate is indeed giving the Julia Roberts/Owen Wilson/Jacob Tremblay hit an Oscar push, so we’ll see how that develops.
We’re probably looking at a $22 million Fri-Sun (-20%) second weekend and $32m holiday frame. That will give the Stephen Chbosky movie a $69m ten-day total on a $20m budget. So, yeah, it’s going to be Lionsgate’s biggest 2017 offering at least in North America (sorry, John Wick Chapter 2) and will certainly top the $100m mark by the time it wraps up. And, yeah, I’ll be seeing the movie as soon as my daughter finishes the original book.
Thor: Ragnarok earned around $6.65 million on Friday for a likely $17m (-22%) fourth weekend and $277.2m domestic cume. So, yeah, the MCU sequel is absolutely going to cross $300m domestic. Fox’s Murder on the Orient Express continued to chug along, earning $5.23m on its third Friday for a likely $13m (-6%) third weekend and robust $74.2m ten-day total. Fox has a new franchise on their hands, and their “big movies for grownups” strategy has a key hit.
Paramount/Viacom Inc.’s Daddy’s Home 2 made around $4.9 million on Friday for a likely $12.5m (-10%) third weekend and $72m 17-day cume. Sony’s The Star grossed $2.765m on Friday for a likely $7.1m (-26%) second weekend and $22.25m ten-day total. That’s not great, but the faith-based toon only cost around $10m, so it’ll still be a solid little programmer as the studio waits for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle to end the year on a high note.
STX Entertainment’s A Bad Moms Christmas earned another $1.81 million on its fourth Friday for a likely $4.76m (-32%) fourth weekend and $59.5m 24-day total. It should end its domestic run with $75m, which is just fine for the $28m comedy sequel. Fox Searchlight’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri earned another $1.615m on Friday and should earn $4.4m over its third weekend (+291%, $7,166 per-location) for a $7.625m 17-day cume. So far, so good for Francis McDormand’s Oscar frontrunner.
Ditto A24’s Lady Bird, which expanded to 741 theaters and earned $1.4 million on Friday for a likely $4.1m (+50%, $5.1k per-location) weekend and $10.7m 24-day total. By the way, Greta Gerwig’s masterpiece (my second-favorite film of the year behind Get Out) now has 160 “fresh” Rotten Tomatoes reviews out of 160. If it gets four more positive reviews, it’ll displace Toy Story 2 as the movie with the most total reviews with a 100% fresh score.