Weekend Box Office: Ant-Man Smaller Than Expected

Ant Man and the Wasp

Fourth of July frame tends to be lucrative, with studios throwing their “easy money” fare every which way. This time around, the easy money in question is a horror sequel and a Marvel flick. Let’s dig in.

Opening in first, Disney/Marvel’s Ant-Man and the Wasp took off but didn’t zip with $75.81m from 4,206 hubs ($18,025 per-theatre average), pacing +32.5% ahead of 2015’s Ant-Man, which took $57.22m in its debut. That’s not a bad number at all for the $162m-budgeted flick, but for the Marvel Cinematic Universe it’s kind of just okay – this is the same franchise that brought us this February’s Black Panther, which is inching ever closer to $700m in the U.S./Canada, and April’s Avengers: Infinity War ($674.87m and counting), to say nothing of its terrific run last year. In terms of Marvel sequels, Ant-Man and the Wasp took the lowest debut, running -11.6% behind the previous title-holder, 2013’s Thor: The Dark World ($85.74m).

To be fair, no rational individual was anticipating Ant-Man and the Wasp to be one of Marvel’s heavy-hitters and this debut is right in line with Disney’s own expectations. Despite being the universe’s follow-up to Infinity War, there isn’t an overt connection to that movie (it’s a prequel, for all intents and purposes) and it’s very well its own thing, perhaps putting off some audiences looking for more of an Infinity War continuation.

One thing to note is that Marvel doesn’t need to make every movie a be all, end all event, and it’s probably beneficial in the long run to have these well-received standalone pictures for the sake of rounding out the universe. They’re also in the desirable position where they can do this and if one or two movies don’t pan out, it’s water off a duck’s back. Regarding Ant-Man and the Wasp’s final numbers, a multiple akin to the first movie (3.15x) gives it $238.8m. Given the front-loading here – the movie’s Friday-to-weekend multiple was 2.25x, rather low for a Marvel flick – there’s a decent shot it ends up lower than that, but $200m+ shouldn’t be an issue.

Internationally, Ant-Man and the Wasp collected $85.89m from 41 markets, making up 41% of its overseas footprint. As per Deadline, the movie is playing +45% ahead of the first Ant-Man, which totaled $339.11m internationally. Top openings for the Paul Rudd/Evangeline Lilly-starrer are South Korea ($20.9m), Mexico ($6.7m), Indonesia ($5.6m), Russia ($4.9m), and Australia ($4.7m).

Source: Universal

In second, Universal’s Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom fell -53% in its third frame, roaring up $28.63m. Domestic cume for the J.A. Bayona movie is $333.39m, pacing -33.4% behind 2015’s Jurassic World at the same point in release. Maintaining that trend gives Fallen Kingdom a $434.4m final cume, but since the discrepancy between this and its 2015 predecessor is ever-growing, expect a lower figure. Alas, hitting $400m is still a distinct possibility, and when Fallen Kingdom passes 2016’s The Secret Life of Pets ($368.38m) it’ll become Universal’s second-highest grossing domestic release ever (unadjusted for inflation), behind Jurassic World.

Overseas, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom grabbed $27.6m from 68 markets for $727.6m overall. Global total is $1.06 billion, marking the third release this year to cross the $1 billion milestone and overtaking 2016’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story ($1.056 billion) for #25 on the all-time list. Top markets are China ($250.4m), the U.K. ($48.9m), South Korea ($45.7m, pending update), Mexico ($25.8m, also pending update), and France ($25.2m).

Taking third, Disney/Pixar’s Incredibles 2 dipped -38.8% for $28.41m in its fourth frame. Domestic tally is $503.77m, taking #12 on the all-time domestic list and passing 2016’s Finding Dory ($486.3m) to become the highest-grossing animated movie ever in the U.S./Canada. Hitting $600m is a little reaching at this point, but somewhere around $570m is a decent final range for the Brad Bird flick.

Overseas, Incredibles 2 took $35.7m from 39 markets, repping just 59% of its international footprint (slow rollout for this one). International and global tallies are $268.51m and $772.28m, respectively, as the movie chugs forward to become 2018’s fourth $1 billion grosser (and Disney’s third). Top markets for Pixar’s superhero family are China ($48.7m), Mexico ($33.8m), Australia ($24.6m), Brazil ($15.4m), and Russia ($14.3m).

The First Purge

Debuting in fourth, Universal/Blumhouse’s The First Purge nabbed $17.37m from 3,031 venues ($5,732 per-theatre average) for a $31.28m 5-day opening, on par with 2016’s The Purge: Election Year‘s 3-day total ($31.52m). Universal and co. know how to market a Purge movie at this point and that proved no different here – political themes, ultraviolence, costume imagery, the works. They make ’em cheap, too, with First Purge’s production budget coming in at $13m. Expect over/under $60m for The First Purge. If the Gerald McMurray movie makes less than $64.48m it’ll rank as the lowest-grossing in the series, but that’s little to fret over.

Internationally, The First Purge debuted with $11.8m from 26 markets, pacing +16% ahead of Election Year in like-for-like territories (per usual, thanks to Deadline for that breakdown). Global tally is $43.08m. Top debuts come courtesy of the U.K. ($2.2m), France ($2.1m), Germany ($1.5m), and Spain ($1.2m).

Sicario 2

Rounding out the top five, Sony’s Sicario: Day of the Soldado fell a harsh -59.9% for $7.62m in its sophomore frame. Domestic tally for the grim drug cartel flick is $35.63m, +32.3% ahead of 2015’s Sicario at the same point in release (after two weeks in wide release). Soldado isn’t holding nearly as well as its predecessor, however, and it’s unlikely to start, what with Universal’s Skyscraper and Paramount’s Mission: Impossible – Fallout swooping in to take the action crowd. Regardless, Soldado should pass Sicario’s $46.89m tally just fine. It’ll need some oomph from the overseas crowd (where Lionsgate, distributor of the first movie, is handling a large portion of the release) to offset that $35m production cost, though.

Speaking of, Sicario: Day of the Soldado didn’t quite give that oomph, adding $3.8m from 63 international markets for $15.5m overall and $43.91m globally. Top markets are the U.K. ($1.8m), Australia ($1.7m), and South Korea ($1.6m).

 

HOLDOVERS

6. Uncle Drew (Lionsgate) – $6.61 million (-56.7%), $29.93m cume
7. Ocean’s 8 (Warner Bros.) – $5.07 million (-39.2%), $126.53m cume
8. Tag (Warner Bros.) – $3.03 million (-48.5%), $48.26m cume
9. Won’t You Be My Neighbor? (Focus) – $2.57 million (+6.2%), $12.36m cume
10. Deadpool 2 (Fox) – $1.68 million (-53.1%), $314.55m cume

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