Weekend Box Office (January 17 - 19, 2020)

by Gitesh Pandya

THIS WEEKEND Audiences celebrated the reteaming of Will Smith and Martin Lawrence and came out in huge numbers for the new action-comedy Bad Boys For Life which generated a powerful estimated debut of $59.2M this MLK weekend over the Friday-to-Sunday span. The Sony sequel averaged a fantastic $15,675 from 3,775 locations and made money the old fashion way - by making crowd-pleasing entertainment.

Recycling old movie brands is common practice in Hollywood, and often it doesn't work. But here you had the original stars coming back together again plus the proven package of R-rated laughs and action. Bad Boys opened in the same range as John Wick 3's $56.8M from last May. Audience scores were high with an A from CinemaScore and even reviews were about as good as they get for an action threequel. The studio is estimating $68.1M for the four-day holiday session and the international start has already brought in another $37.3M.

Robert Downey Jr. saw a disappointing debut for his kidpic Dolittle which opened in second place with an estimated $22.5M. Normally this result would not be too bad for a poorly-reviewed family film releasing in January. However its enormous cost (pegged in the $175M range) makes this gross a letdown. The PG-rated comedy averaged $5,415 from 4,155 locations and the B grade from CinemaScore indicates a shaky road ahead. Most key international markets open later so it will truly need to shine overseas if it hopes to make money.

Winner of the PGA Award and the Golden Globe for Best Picture - Drama, the war film 1917 continued its excellent box office run with an estimated $22.1M. Down 40%, the Universal hit has boosted its cume to $76.8M and Oscar buzz should keep it going over the weeks ahead. It may break the century mark next weekend.

Jumanji: The Next Level ranked fourth with an estimated $9.6M, down 32%. Sony has captured $270.5M from North America, $438.3M from international markets, and $708.8M global. Declining 45% to an estimated $8.4M was Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker which is closing in on the half-billion mark. New totals through Sunday are now $492M domestic, $534.6M overseas, and $1.03 billion worldwide. A final of about $1.1 billion seems likely.

The Warner Bros. drama Just Mercy dropped 38% in its second weekend of wide release taking in an estimated $6M raising the total to $19.6M. Oscar nominee Little Women followed with an estimated $5.9M, down 24%, and $84.4M to date for Sony. In eighth place in its eighth weekend was Knives Out grossing an estimated $4.3M, off 24%, and $146M domestic. Global is $277M for Lionsgate.

The comedy Like A Boss fell 62% to an estimated $3.8M for $16.9M overall for Paramount. Rounding out the top ten was the toon juggernaut Frozen II with an estimated $3.7M sliding 37% in its ninth weekend. Disney has banked a colossal $464.9M domestic, $936.2M international, and has now crossed $1.4 billion worldwide.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $145.5M which was up 33% from last year's holiday frame when Glass opened at number one with $40.3M; and up 13% from 2018's holiday when Jumanji stayed in the top spot with $28.1M over three days.

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Last Updated: January 19, 2020 at 12:55PM ET

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