Weekend Box Office: ‘Maleficent’ Bewitches Moviegoers

Disney continues to enchant audiences with its second big release family release in six months. However, while ‘Frozen>’ deserved its record-breaking success, this weekend’s fairy tale reboot did not.

Banking off moviegoers’ undying love of Disney’s classic animated tale ‘Sleeping Beauty‘, ‘Maleficent‘ performed better than expected in its debut weekend, drawing in $70 million from nearly 4,000 IMAX, 3D and 2D screens across the nation. The haul is up from similar projects such as ‘Oz the Great and Powerful’ and ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’, but it’s actually down from Disney’s 2010 live action ‘Alice in Wonderland’. After this completely undeserving win, expect to see even more movies like this on top of the already-in-the-works live action ‘Cinderella’ and ‘Jungle Book’ remakes.

X-Men: Days of Future Past‘ dropped a steep 64% in its second weekend, but still managed to lock in second place. Its $32.6 million weekend pushed its ten-day domestic total up to $162 million. Yet the film is really killing at the overseas box office. In that same span, the sequel’s worldwide totals have already made it the highest-grossing title in the franchise. This, the seventh installment, is the first to ever cross $500 million worldwide, which it did in just ten days.

Seth MacFarlane’s comedy Western ‘A Million Ways to Die in the West‘ was a hopeful title for Universal. His last picture, ‘Ted‘, brought in $218.8 million over its domestic run. Unfortunately, ‘A Million Ways’ will not finish anywhere near that. The opening weekend only grossed $17 million, a fraction of the $54 million that ‘Ted’ saw, and has already been labeled a flop. The blame can likely be placed on MacFarlane casting himself in the leading role rather than an established likeable actor like Mark Wahlberg.

Godzilla‘ slipped another 60% and now doesn’t appear to be the huge hit that its opening weekend led us to believe. The film’s $12.2 million third weekend pushed its 17-day numbers up to $174.6 million. The behemoth monster movie hasn’t been able to match the $90 million it earned in its first three days in the 14 days since.

The Top 5 was rounded out with Adam Sandler’s flop ‘Blended‘. Weekend #2 saw a mild 41% slip. The additional $8.4 million nudged its ten-day total up to $29.6 million, highlighting the fact that Sandler’s movies can no longer be counted on to gross $100+ million in their domestic runs.

On the indie front, Jesse Eisenberg, Dakota Fanning and Peter Sarsgaard’s activist thriller ‘Night Moves‘ didn’t exactly blow up the proverbial dam. From two screens, the movie only earned $24,100, for a per-screen average of $12,050.

Weekend estimates have not yet been reported for James McAvoy’s ‘Filth‘.

Top 10:

1. ‘Maleficent’ (Buena Vista) – $70,000,000

2. ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’ (Fox) – $32,600,000

3. ‘A Million Ways to Die in the West’ (Universal) – $17,069,000

4. ‘Godzilla’ (Warner Bros.) – $12,225,000

5. ‘Blended’ (Warner Bros.) – $8,425,000

6. ‘Neighbors’ (Universal) – $7,715,000

7. ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2’ (Sony) – $3,755,000

8. ‘Million Dollar Arm’ (Buena Vista) – $3,700,000

9. ‘Chef’ (Open Road) – $2,009,000

10. ‘The Other Woman’ (Fox) – $1,425,000


  1. Chris B

    Gonna go watch X-Men tommorow night, hopefully it lives up to all the great reviews it’s been getting.

    It’s a shame that “A million ways…” turned out to be such a disappointment. Although, I kind of have to disagree with you Luke as to why the film performed so poorly. I don’t think it was the lack of an established actor in the lead role, I just think it’s the fact that westerns tend to do rather poorly at the box office nowadays. Every girl I know has zero interest in them, and of the western fans I do know (myself included), they enjoy gritty, violent westerns with lots of gunplay and shootouts. As opposed to a western comedy, who did they expect to go and see this thing? Even as a big fan of the genre, I’ll just wait for the Blu-Ray. I bet even if they had Mark Wahlberg himself as the lead it still woulda flopped…

    I’m not all that surprised Godzilla had such a steep drop-off, no doubt the result of poor word-of-mouth from people who saw it on opening weekend. I saw it last tuesday and I honestly don’t understand all the positive reviews. I was so excited
    to see it and it just completely fell flat for me. Nearly the entire time I was thinking to myself “I’d rather be watching Pacific Rim”. What a wasted opportunity…

  2. Drew

    Please check your facts. ‘Oz The Great and Powerful’ debuted to just under $80 million (I believe it was 79.1 million, to be precise). Last time I checked, 70 million is not “up from” nearly 80 million.

  3. William Henley

    I was actually really surprised when I went to go see A Million Ways To Die In The West. It was in one of the theater’s smallest auditoriums, and for a prime-time showing, the theater had maybe three dozen people in it. It’s a pitty, because this is a really good movie.

    Out of curiosity, how much trouble would it be to ask that we also have an International Top 10, or at least to tell us how much the movie pulled domestically and internationally? There are plenty of movies that flop domestically that do well internationally (The Golden Compass, Mamma Mia), and vice-versa. Not sure if anyoen other than myself would be interested in those numbers, though.

    • William Henley

      Mamma Mia pulled in $27 million domestically on its opening weekend. Depends on what you would consider a huge hit.

  4. Drew

    And opening weekends are all that matter? Using that logic, ‘Frozen’ was a major disappointment, despite earning over $400 million, domestically. After all, it only debuted to $67 million, during its wide release opening weekend.

  5. Drew

    Bottom line: ‘Mamma Mia’ made almost 3 times its production budget, in the United States alone ($144 million gross, against a $52 million budget). That’s a HUGE hit, no matter how you look at it.

  6. Drew

    Just remember, long legs are more important than opening weekend figures, no matter how much the current box office climate wants you to believe otherwise.

    The most recent significant example? ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ vs ‘TAS-M 2’. Their debuts were quite similar. One of them had long legs, the other didn’t. Guess which one will struggle to reach $200 million, domestically? Which one made over $260 million?

  7. William Henley

    No matter how you look at it, the point I was trying to make is that the movie performed significantly better overseas than it did in the US.

  8. Drew

    That’s not even entirely true. The film made a little more than 3 times its domestic haul, overseas. This is definitely not an example of “plenty of movies that flop domestically that do well internationally.”

    Yes, ‘Mamma Mia’ performed marginally better, overseas. However, it’s still a terrible example. The overseas performance was right in line with the domestic performance (Roughly 3x the budget, domestically. Roughly 3x the domestic gross, in all overseas markets combined). This is right in line with how many big domestic hits perform worldwide. In fact, the biggest domestic hits of all time, all did 3x or more business overseas, than their domestic take. Take a look at ‘Avatar’, ‘Titanic’, ‘The Avengers’, and the final ‘Harry Potter’.

    • William Henley

      Look, I am stepping out of this argument. I am not trying to defend the statement. All I was asking is if it would be too much trouble for the author to also include international numbers in the post, just because I am curious to see how stuff stacks up between the us and international audiences.

  9. Drew

    This has nothing to do with ‘Mamma Mia’. Remove ‘Mamma Mia’ and insert any other title that was a huge hit, both domestically and internationally, if it helps.

    This was an an argument about making an erroneous statement, and then trying to support and back up that statement by making additional erroneous statements.

  10. We all sort of expected this movie to make the bucks it was going to opening weekend. With all the visual effects, even if it sucks, people will pass on word of mouth on how great it is. Reminds me of the ads for “Dragon Brain” on the radio in the GTA IV game.
    Angelina Jolie’s ego must be the size of Mount Everest by now, and payday from this movie pretty damn close.
    Sorry but she is way overrated. The makeup budget for any film she is cast must be HUGE as you gotta cover up all those gawd awful tats.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *