Weekend Box Office (March 8 - 10, 2019)
THIS WEEKEND Blasting past industry expectations, the newest Marvel comic book smash Captain Marvel generated a colossal debut grossing an estimated $153M at the North American box office on its opening weekend. The Disney release averaged a muscular $35,499 from 4,310 locations.
In the lucrative super hero genre, it was an incredible result for a solo character movie, as well as for a non-sequel. Captain Marvel enjoyed the third biggest March opening weekend of all-time behind 2017's Beauty and the Beast ($174.8M) and 2016's Batman v Superman ($166M).
The PG-13 adventure kicked off its run on Friday with a $61.4M opening day including $20.7M from Thursday night pre-shows. Saturday dipped 14% to $53M for an understandable decline for this type of movie. Last February, Black Panther dropped a similar 13% on Saturday. Sunday is estimated to drop 27% to $38.6M. Studio data showed that the male audience was 55% while 63% were 25 and older. A glowing A grade was earned by moviegoers polled by CinemaScore on opening night. A year ago, the MCU saw an A for Avengers: Infinity War and a rare A+ for Black Panther.
Captain Marvel scored the seventh best opening weekend for the 21-film MCU and soared higher than most of the recent DCEU films including Wonder Woman which bowed to $103.3M. Among comic book movies introducing a new character, it does not get much bigger than Captain Marvel.
Reviews were positive and fan excitement had been building for months. Now the film will try to have legs over the weeks ahead and with the calendar not having many other big films in March, a good run is possible. Carol Danvers and her friends from planet C-53 have a shot at beating the $412.6M final of Wonder Woman which played during the summer when schools were closing.
Disney gave Captain Marvel a day and date release this weekend in all overseas markets except Japan and the results were eye-popping. The epic grossed an estimated $302M from 53 markets making for a jaw-dropping $455M worldwide opening weekend start to a run that likely will allow Captain Marvel to join the billion dollar club.
China led the way overseas with a big $89.3M debut marking the third best MCU launch ever there behind Infinity War and Captain America: Civil War. After next weekend, the global tally should climb past $700M and may even break $750M with plenty more to go. With this new movie, the MCU has now broken the $7 billion mark domestically and might even cross $8 billion by June after the release of the eagerly awaited tentpole Avengers: Endgame next month.
Far, far back in second place was the animated threequel How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World with an estimated $14.7M, down 51%, for a new domestic take of $119.7M. Universal has banked another $315.5M overseas for a global tally of $435.2M. The Dragon trilogy has now grossed over $1.5 billion globally.
Dropping 56% in its second weekend was the Tyler Perry comedy A Madea Family Funeral with an estimated $12.1M giving Lionsgate $45.9M to date. Continuing the franchise parade, Warner Bros. saw its toon sequel The LEGO Movie 2 fall 42% to an estimated $3.8M putting Warner Bros. at $97.1M.
Hoping to kick off a new sci-fi franchise, Alita: Battle Angel fell 56% to an estimated $3.2M giving Fox $78.3M overall. The mighty international haul climbed to $304.3M led by China's $126M pushing worldwide to $382.7M. Oscar champ Green Book grossed an estimated $2.5M, off 46%, for a $80.1M cume at Universal. Global is now $242.2M.
The Warners comedy Isn't It Romantic collected an estimated $2.4M dropping 47% for $44.2M to date. MGM's Fighting With My Family fell sharply collecting an estimated $2.2M, down 53%, and raised its sum to $18.7M.
Sliding 52% to an estimated $2.2M in its second weekend was the thriller Greta which has taken in $8.3M for Focus. The IMAX doc Apollo 11 played in only 405 locations but was in the top ten with an estimated $1.3M. Total for Neon is $3.8M.
The top ten films grossed an estimated $197.3M which was up a healthy 60% from last year when Black Panther held onto the number one spot for a fourth time with $40.8M; and up a good 32% from 2017 when Kong: Skull Island opened on top with $61M.
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This column is updated three times each week: Thursday (upcoming weekend's summary), Sunday (post-weekend analysis with estimates), and Monday night (actuals). Opinions expressed in this column are those solely of the author.
Last Updated: March 10, 2019 at 2:550PM ET
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