Weekend Box Office (June 20 - 22, 2014)

by Gitesh Pandya

THIS WEEKEND Sony ruled the North American box office with a pair of popular comedy sequels, each connecting well with its target audience. The battle-of-the-sexes pic Think Like A Man Too featuring an ensemble cast including red hot star Kevin Hart opened in first place by a narrow margin with an estimated $30M. That was off 11% from the $33.6M debut of its predecessor from April 2012, but still a muscular start. The PG-13 film averaged a spectacular $13,483 from 2,225 locations.

The first pic was well-liked and the sequel brought back the cast and also offered something new and engaging with its story of a wedding weekend in Las Vegas. Just as before, females led the way and made up 63% of the audience (same ratio as last film). 59% were over 30. Reviews were mostly negative, but that is common for comedy sequels. Ticket buyers instead responded to the starpower, brand, and humor. They liked what they got given the A- CinemaScore. Too may not reach the $91.5M final gross of its predecessor, but the $24M-budgeted film should certainly end up being another moneymaker for Sony.

After a sparkling debut last week followed by healthy mid-week sales, the buddy cop sequel 22 Jump Street finished close behind in second place this weekend with an estimated $29M. Off 49% - a terrific hold for a sequel - the R-rated comedy has now banked an impressive $111.5M. Should it continue to enjoy this impressive playability driven by strong word-of-mouth, it could end up in the range of $190M. The next major adult comedy does not arrive until Melissa McCarthy unleashes Tammy on July 2.

Jump Street actually was number one on Saturday and Sunday but the hefty opening day Friday for Think Like A Man Too (which included Thursday pre-shows) was enough to give that film the weekend crown.

Despite no new kidpics opening, the DreamWorks Animation title How to Train Your Dragon 2 fell 49% in its second weekend to an estimated $25.3M pushing the cume to $95.2M thus far. Among summer sequels from the toon studio, the drop was more like 2011's Kung Fu Panda 2 (-50%) than 2012's Madagascar 3 (-44%). Last summer's Pixar sequel Monsters University dropped 45% in June.

A domestic final of around $170M seems likely for the well-reviewed Fox release putting it near the $187.2M of the animation studio's The Croods from last year. Competition has come from Disney's fairy tale hit Maleficent which is roaring towards $200M and next weekend, the new Transformers will take away many older kids. The first Dragon was a sleeper hit and eased only 34% in its second weekend, though a hold like that was never expected for the new installment.

Clint Eastwood's Jersey Boys opened in fourth to mild results attracting one of the oldest audiences in recent years with an estimated $13.5M from 2,905 locations for a $4,652 average. The R-rated adaptation of the Tony Award-winning musical about 1960s music group The Four Seasons skewed female and much older. Studio research from Warner Bros. showed that women made up 61% of the crowd and a very high 71% were over the age of 50. Reviews were mixed and the gross was in line with what Eastwood usually sees in his first wide weekend. With an A- CinemaScore and an older target audience, Jersey may hold up moderately well in the weeks to come although keeping a national ad campaign going does not come cheap.

Angelina Jolie reached a new career high this weekend with her latest hit Maleficent which became her biggest global grosser ever for a live-action film. The Disney pic dipped only 30% in North America to an estimated $13M for a new total of $186M. A strong $20.3M opening weekend in China propelled the overseas total to $335.6M and the worldwide tally to $521.6M beating 2005's Mr. & Mrs. Smith. Her spy smash with Brad Pitt had been her top-grossing live-action film for the past nine years with $478M. Maleficent has higher ticket prices and 3D surcharges, though.

Tom Cruise is not making as much money with his latest action entry Edge of Tomorrow, however his well-liked sci-fi action pic is holding up well thanks to fan support. The pricey Warner Bros. release dropped 37% to an estimated $10.3M in its third lap pushing the sum up to $74.5M. It now has a good shot at joining the century club. That comes as good news for the actor who has not crossed $100M domestically in a lead role outside of his signature Mission: Impossible franchise in the nine years since 2005's War of the Worlds.

Fox followed with a pair of hits. The romance The Fault In Our Stars dropped a moderate 42% to an estimated $8.6M for a new cume to date of $98.7M on the edge of being the summer's latest $100M+ grosser. X-Men: Days of Future Past followed with an estimated $6.2M, down 37%, for $216.8M to date. It is the summer's top-grossing film so far and now stands as the second highest grossing film in the seven-pic X-Men franchise. Look for Past to challenge the $234.4M of 2006's The Last Stand.

Indie hit Chef collected an estimated $1.8M, dipping only 16%, with $16.9M to date for Open Road. Godzilla rounded out the top ten with an estimated $1.8M as well falling 45% in its sixth weekend. With $194.9M so far, the big-budget 3D monster movie is heading to a $200M finish although total tickets sold will still end up substantially lower than the 1998 Godzilla.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $139.6M which was down 39% from last year's record June frame when Monsters University opened at number one with $82.4M; and off 8% from 2012 when Brave debuted on top with $66.3M.

Compared to projections, Think Like A Man Too opened a few notches below my $35M forecast while Jersey Boys was very close to my $12M prediction.

Get earlier box office updates and analysis by following BoxOfficeGuru.com on Twitter.

Watch the trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy. For a review of X-Men visit The Chief Report.

Be sure to check back on Monday for final figures and again on Thursday for a complete summary, including projections, for next weekend when Transformers: Age of Extinction arrives as the frame's solo wide opener.

# Title Jun 20 - 22 Jun 13 - 15 % Chg. Theaters Weeks AVG Cumulative Distributor
1 Think Like A Man Too $ 29,241,911 2,225 1 $ 13,142 $ 29,241,911 Sony
2 22 Jump Street 27,460,995 57,071,445 -51.9 3,306 2 8,306 109,911,125 Sony
3 How to Train Your Dragon 2 24,719,312 49,451,322 -50.0 4,268 2 5,792 94,596,047 Fox
4 Jersey Boys 13,319,371 2,905 1 4,585 13,319,371 Warner Bros.
5 Maleficent 12,910,766 18,504,997 -30.2 3,450 4 3,742 185,879,334 Disney
6 Edge of Tomorrow 9,820,080 16,527,215 -40.6 3,212 3 3,057 73,991,573 Warner Bros.
7 The Fault In Our Stars 8,565,710 14,791,933 -42.1 3,340 3 2,565 98,694,043 Fox
8 X-Men: Days of Future Past 6,150,460 9,816,449 -37.3 2,681 5 2,294 216,744,710 Fox
9 Godzilla 1,888,304 3,311,185 -43.0 1,365 6 1,383 194,983,388 Warner Bros.
10 Chef 1,708,590 2,187,526 -21.9 961 7 1,778 16,805,780 Open Road
11 A Million Ways to Die in the West 1,600,550 3,246,400 -50.7 1,417 4 1,130 40,302,450 Universal
12 Neighbors 1,368,375 2,369,250 -42.2 1,033 7 1,325 145,716,950 Universal
13 Blended 1,007,492 1,739,108 -42.1 842 5 1,197 42,358,883 Warner Bros.
14 The Amazing Spider-Man 2 633,630 953,927 -33.6 434 8 1,460 199,510,835 Sony
15 Million Dollar Arm 538,050 804,423 -33.1 444 6 1,212 34,402,198 Disney
16 The Rover 481,214 69,302 594.4 608 2 791 562,440 A24
17 Rio 2 413,379 415,628 -0.5 310 11 1,333 127,375,992 Fox
18 Belle 318,771 510,282 -37.5 244 8 1,306 9,198,251 Fox Searchlight
19 Divergent 270,363 382,468 -29.3 289 14 936 150,160,035 Lionsgate
20 Ida 268,817 256,951 4.6 133 8 2,021 2,065,330 Music Box
Top 5 $ 107,652,355 $ 156,346,912 -31.1
Top 10 135,785,499 177,277,722 -23.4
Top 20 142,686,140 183,358,720 -22.2
Top 20 vs. 2013 142,686,140 237,568,069 -39.9

Last Updated: June 22, 2014 at 2:50PM ET

Watch Gitesh Pandya's weekly box office preview on CNN International airing live each Thursday at 6:40pm ET.

©1997 - 2014 Box Office Guru