Weekend Box Office: Hail to the King, Baby

These days, sequels, spin-offs, reboots and remakes are no longer guaranteed box office success as they were when they started flooding the market a decade ago, but that doesn’t mean studios are about to stop trying. Warner Bros. took an expensive risk by resurrecting (again) its mammoth monster franchises. It paid off three years ago with ‘Godzilla’, and did so again this weekend with the latest iteration of King Kong.

After ‘Logan’ had an $88.4 million opening last week, it was questionable if ‘Kong: Skull Island‘ could dethrone it this weekend, but moviegoers went bananas for the PG-13 popcorn flick. With a $61 million debut, ‘Kong’ is king. However, this total is little disappointing when you consider that ‘Godzilla‘ opened to $93.1 million in 2014. This diminishing trend also carried through to international markets. While ‘Godzilla’ opened in 64 markets with $103.4 million, ‘Kong’ only opened to $81.6 million from 65 markets. In addition, ‘Godzilla’ was produced for $160 million and ‘Kong’ cost $185 million. It will be interesting to see how this pans out. If ‘Kong’ doesn’t pull through, do you think Warner Bros. will still pursue its planned 2020 release of ‘Godzilla v. Kong: Dawn of Destruction’?

Logan‘ took a slightly harder than expected hit over its second week, but with an adamantium frame, can take a licking and keep on ticking. Even with a 57% drop, the movie still grossed $37.8 million and had no trouble locking in second place. After ten days, the R-rated Marvel movie has brought in $152.6 million domestically and $285.6 million overseas. With a worldwide total of $438.2 million, the $97 million picture is well into the range of profitability. Of the ten ‘X-Men’ universe movies, it currently ranks as the fifth-highest grossing – and it’s not even close to bowing.

Jordan Peele’s ‘Get Out‘ fell into third place in its third week. The R-rated horror movie saw another extremely light decline. Falling just 25% in attendance, it earned another $21 million, boosting its 17-day total up to $111 million. The $4.5 million picture is now Blumhouse’s second-highest grossing picture (behind January’s ‘Split’), and it’s also not even close to being done yet.

Although critically panned, faith-based ‘The Shack‘ had a solid debut last week. Positive word-of-mouth resulted in a light 38% dip in attendance. The drama dropped into the #4 spot and brought in $10 million. Ten days in, its domestic total is up to $32.2 million. Budgeted at $20 million, it still has a way to go, but the upcoming international rollout ought to help with that.

Now in its fifth week, ‘The Lego Batman Movie‘ rounded out the Top 5 thanks to a 33% drop and a $7.8 million weekend. The $80 million family film has made $159 million domestically and $116.5 million overseas, giving it a worldwide total of $275.5 million.

Both of the weekend’s notable indie releases performed rather well. From four locations, Kristen Stewart’s ghost thriller ‘Personal Shopper‘ collected $92,516 and a per-screen average of $23,129. From two locations, the French/Belgian coming-of-age cannibal thriller ‘Raw‘ consumed $25,230 and a per-screen average of $12,615.

Top 10:

1. ‘Kong: Skull Island’ (Warner Bros.) – $61,015,000

2. ‘Logan’ (Fox) – $37,850,000

3. ‘Get Out’ (Universal) – $21,072,600

4. ‘The Shack’ (Lionsgate) – $10,050,000

5. ‘The LEGO Batman Movie’ (Warner Bros.) – $7,820,000

6. ‘Before I Fall’ (Open Road) – $3,107,910

7. ‘Hidden Figures’ (Fox) – $2,765,000

8. ‘John Wick: Chapter Two’ (Lionsgate) – $2,700,000

9. ‘La La Land’ (Lionsgate) – $1,770,000

10. ‘Fifty Shades Darker’ (Universal) – $1,629,250

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