Weekend Box Office (December 28 - 30, 2018)
THIS WEEKEND The final frame of 2018 was ruled once again by Aquaman with the DC super hero saga grossing an estimated $51.6M in its second session to boost the cume to $188.8M after ten days plus previews. The 24% decline was quite good for an action tentpole at this time of year. Movies typically are helped on the weekend close to New Year's by the extra vacation time many people have.
Warner Bros. is now on course to break $200M on Monday or Tuesday and should also find its way past the $300M mark too with sales likely to stay healthy throughout January. Audiences have been having a blast and good word of mouth has allowed the super hero pic to reach a broad audience.
The worldwide total has soared to an astonishing $748.8M and now looks very likely to shatter the $1 billion mark by the end of the run. This weekend saw an estimated $85.4M from 78 overseas markets for a new international haul of $560M led by China's enormous $260.4M. The road ahead should lead to $700M+ overseas and $300M+ from North America allowing Aquaman to beat Batman v Superman as the highest grossing film in the six-film DC Extended Universe.
Disney is a step away from closing out 2018 with another $100M grosser as the musical Mary Poppins Returns delivered a strong result in its second weekend with an estimated $28M. The PG-rated pic saw a healthy 19% rise from its opening weekend now that its target audience of adult women and families are more available. Cume to date is $98.9M and global stands at $173.3M with Australia, Russia and India opening next week plus Japan and Korea launching in February.
Off only 5% in its second weekend was Bumblebee which action fans are now getting to after being so distracted by Arthur Curry. Paramount collected an estimated $20.5M raising the cume to $66.8M. International markets kicked in another $45.7M this weekend for a $90M offshore total and $156.8M global gross. China opens this Friday and given how Transformers movies rank among the highest grossing American films of all-time there, some hefty cash could be in store for this new spinoff.
The acclaimed animated super hero film Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse placed fourth this weekend with an estimated $18.3M shooting up 11% from last weekend's take. That propelled the domestic cume into nine-digit territory with $103.6M so far. Overseas markets have contributed $109.6M putting the global score at $213.2M with most markets holding nicely.
Clint Eastwood's fan base turned out again for The Mule which rose a solid 24% to an estimated $11.8M giving Warner Bros. $60.7M to date.
Two new releases which opened on Christmas Day took up the next two spots on the weekend chart with moderate results. Golden Globe nominee Vice grossed an estimated $7.8M from 2,442 locations for a $3,190 average. Annapurna has collected $17.7M in six days. Reviews have been somewhat good but audiences gave an underwhelming C+ CinemaScore grade.
Earning an awful D+ grade with paying customers was the Will Ferrell comedy Holmes & Watson which took in an estimated $7.3M over the weekend from 2,776 sites for a $2,630 average. The R-rated pic was panned by critics and has grabbed $19.7M for Sony since its mid-week debut.
Jennifer Lopez followed with her comedy Second Act which rose 11% to an estimated $7.2M giving STX $21.8M to date. Disney's Ralph Breaks the Internet climbed 39% with kids still on break and grossed an estimated $6.5M. New totals are $175.7M domestic and $350.4M worldwide. With Christmas passing, the animated hit The Grinch fell 50% to an estimated $4.2M and should be finishing up its run soon. But Universal has had a great run with $265.5M domestic and $469.4M global.
The top ten films grossed an estimated $163.2M which was off 6% from last year when Star Wars: The Last Jedi remained at number one with $52.5M; and down 2% from 2016 when Rogue One stayed in the top spot with $49.6M.
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Watch the trailer for Men in Black: International.
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: December 30, 2018 at 2:15PM ET
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