Weekend Box Office (July 17 - 19, 2015)

by Gitesh Pandya

THIS WEEKEND Marvel took its usual number one spot for its latest super hero flick Ant-Man which debuted to an estimated $58M launching yet another big character for the comic studio. The PG-13 actioner averaged $15,052 from 3,856 locations and played to the usual comic book crowd which tends to be reliable when a good film is presented to it.

The opening was off 11-12% from the debuts of the first Captain America and Thor pics from the summer of 2011 which makes sense since this character is not as well known. Ant-Man did not, however, come close to the heights of the $94.3M bow of Guardians of the Galaxy from mid-summer last year which was also another Marvel production based on characters that were not mainstream.

Ant-Man with Paul Rudd did earn good marks from critics and paying audiences gave an A grade from CinemaScore. Their breakdown was pretty standard for the genre - 58% male and 55% over 25. The micro-sized hero will next appear in the third Captain America flick opening next May. With ongoing soap opera-like storylines that interconnect, Marvel super hero films can tempt fans back in again and again as they do not want to miss out on the overall saga. Overseas debuts brought in $56.4M this weekend giving Ant-Man a $114.4M worldwide launch.

Following its explosive opening weekend, the animated smash Minions fell sharply in its second session but still grossed a massive $50.2M, according to estimates. Down 57%, the Universal spin-off has racked up a giant $216.7M after its second weekend and looks to be on course to end in the $350M range putting it very close to the $368.1M of Despicable Me 2. Its healthy $66.2M international weekend propelled the overseas total to $409.1M putting Minions at a mammoth $625.8M worldwide making the $1 billion mark within reach.

Amy Schumer scored her first hit movie with her first try as Trainwreck debuted well in third place with an estimated $30.2M putting it in the same range as many other top R-rated comedy hits from more established box office stars. Universal's umpteenth success this year averaged a muscular $9,575 from 3,158 locations with white adult women leading the charge. Studio data showed that the audience was 74% white, 66% female, and 63% over 30.

Costing only about $35M to produce, Trainwreck could find its way past the $100M mark just like another female-led R-rated comedy from this summer, Melissa McCarthy's Spy, which bowed to $29.1M and currently stands at $106.6M. Add in Pitch Perfect 2's $183.5M and this summer's laughs are coming from the ladies. Trainwreck also marks a comeback for Judd Apatow who has not directed a big hit in eight years. Reviews were very positive and audiences also liked the film which earned an A- from CinemaScore. Schumer looks to be a mighty box office force in comedy movies over the years to come.

Pixar scored only its third ever $300M+ domestic blockbuster with its latest hit Inside Out which grossed an estimated $11.7M sliding only 34%. The Disney release has now banked a stellar $306.4M from North America and has added $183.8M from international markets for a global tally of $490.2M. Pixar's only other films to cross the triple-century mark here were Finding Nemo and Toy Story 3.

Still in the top five in its sixth round was Jurassic World which this weekend became 2015's biggest worldwide blockbuster by edging past Universal stablemate Furious 7. The dino-sequel held up well again dropping 37% to an estimated $11.4M pushing the domestic cume to a staggering $611.1M. It cracked $600M on Friday in a record 36 days. The overseas haul topped $900M reaching $902.3M giving World a worldwide haul of $1.51 billion with 60% coming from international.

Terminator Genisys got shoved aside by this weekend's new action entry and suffered the worst fall of any wide release. The return of Arnold saw a sharp 61% tumble with an estimated $5.4M for a new domestic total of $80.6M. This will be the first Terminator sequel that fails to crack $100M domestically as Genisys is on track to end with about $93M. Overseas markets have brought in a solid $196.8M for a global take of $277.4M with China yet to set a release date. 71% of the worldwide box office has come from outside of North America.

Warner Bros. followed with a pair of titles. Magic Mike XXL dropped 53% to an estimated $4.5M while The Gallows fell 59% in its sophomore frame to an estimated $4M. Totals are $58.6M and $18M. The comedy sequel Ted 2 grossed an estimated $2.7M, off 52%, for a $77.4M cume for Universal.

Barely sneaking into the top ten was the Ian McKellen film Mr. Holmes with an estimated $2.5M debut from 363 locations for a solid $6,857 average. The well-reviewed drama is from Miramax and Roadside Attractions.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $180.6M which was up 38% from last year when Dawn of the Planet of the Apes stayed at number one with $36.3M; and up 4% from 2013 when The Conjuring opened in the top spot with $41.9M.

Compared to projections, Ant-Man opened on target with my $57M forecast while Trainwreck came in above my $24M prediction.

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For a NEW review of Ant-Man visit The Chief Report.

Watch the trailer for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

Be sure to check back on Monday for final studio figures and again on Thursday for a complete summary, including projections, for next weekend when Pixels, Paper Towns, and Southpaw all open.

# Title Jul 17 - 19 Jul 10 - 12 % Chg. Theaters Weeks AVG Cumulative Distributor
1 Ant-Man $ 57,225,526 3,856 1 $ 14,841 $ 57,225,526 Disney
2 Minions 49,274,730 115,718,405 -57.4 4,311 2 11,430 215,766,440 Universal
3 Trainwreck 30,097,040 3,158 1 9,530 30,097,040 Universal
4 Inside Out 11,544,080 17,665,796 -34.7 3,263 5 3,538 306,247,046 Disney
5 Jurassic World 11,454,975 18,151,275 -36.9 3,117 6 3,675 611,228,810 Universal
6 Terminator Genisys 5,402,189 13,830,369 -60.9 2,814 3 1,920 80,642,314 Paramount
7 Magic Mike XXL 4,448,045 9,582,350 -53.6 2,577 3 1,726 58,584,009 Warner Bros.
8 The Gallows 4,011,094 9,808,463 -59.1 2,720 2 1,475 18,102,685 Warner Bros.
9 Bajrangi Bhaijaan 2,621,282 256 1 10,239 2,621,282 Eros
10 Ted 2 2,602,390 5,666,310 -54.1 1,582 4 1,645 77,359,250 Universal
11 Mr. Holmes 2,434,908 361 1 6,745 2,434,908 Roadside/Miramax
12 Self/Less 2,268,476 5,403,460 -58.0 2,353 2 964 10,331,633 Focus
13 Max 1,912,435 3,542,406 -46.0 1,508 4 1,268 37,888,090 Warner Bros.
14 Spy 1,506,082 3,052,681 -50.7 939 7 1,604 106,598,905 Fox
15 Amy 1,110,210 1,799,780 -38.3 435 3 2,552 4,177,507 A24
16 Baahubali (est) 1,000,000 3,000,000 -66.7 160 2 6,250 6,000,000 Blue Sky
17 San Andreas 589,541 1,231,228 -52.1 402 8 1,467 151,244,307 Warner Bros.
18 Avengers: Age of Ultron 468,050 455,764 2.7 292 12 1,603 455,998,417 Disney
19 Mad Max: Fury Road 384,349 617,148 -37.7 268 10 1,434 150,986,661 Warner Bros.
20 Dope 297,352 624,894 -52.4 221 5 1,345 16,118,815 Open Road
Top 5 $ 159,596,351 $ 175,174,308 -8.9
Top 10 178,681,351 202,421,515 -11.7
Top 20 190,652,754 211,869,597 -10.0
Top 20 vs. 2014 190,652,754 143,729,114 32.6

Last Updated: July 19, 2015 at 2:45PM ET

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