Weekend Report: “Spy” decent but can’t hold a candle to “The Heat”, “Insidious 3” scares off “Entourage”

“Spy”, the new $65M Paul Fieg comedy starring Melissa McCarthy, got off to a bit of a slow start this weekend, pulling in a flat $30M. That pales in comparison to 2013’s “The Heat”, which opened to $39M off of a significantly lower budget. It is also a bit lower than the five day start of last year’s universally panned “Tammy”, which is a pretty damning statistic.

Its hard to say that this is a bad debut, but it does seem like Spy should’ve done better. Expectations had it from high $30’s to even mid $40’s, which didn’t seem unreasonable; It had a bigger budget, bigger action scenes in the trailer and more stars, like Rose Byrne of Bridesmaids, Jason Statham who was fresh off Furious 7 to attract a male audience, and of course, Melissa McCarthy. At this point Spy is solely relying on word of mouth, which isn’t too good considering the B+ on Cinemascore. Still, it showed that Melissa McCarthy still has a fanbase, and it should be able to get past $100M if it doesn’t get absolutely crushed by Ted 2 in a few weeks.

This truly does go to show just how much it seems Tammy damaged McCarthy’s reputation. Either that, or audiences are simply tired of her shtick, as Spy appeared to be firmly within her wheelhouse, and there’s only so many times people will go to watch the same performance, regardless of the Rotten Tomatoes score.

In second place, “Insidious: Chapter 3″ got off to a decent start with $23M. That’s about half of 2013’s Insidious 2, but there’s a few reasons for that. For one, that was a direct sequel to one of the most popular horror films in recent memory (Paranormal Activity 2 had a similar debut, in fact) and it had the great marketing of opening on Friday the 13th. That small gimmick turned out to be massively successful, as that film made over half of its opening on Friday alone, before falling like a rock. Insidious 3, on the other hand, was basically a brand new family and cast (other than Lin Shaye), meaning it was essentially sold only on the name brand, and considering the June release date with lots of other strong contendors, this $23M start shows just how popular the Insidious brand is.

This is also the best start for a microbudget horror film since last years Annabelle, at $37M. Not only that, but its a touch above Poltergeist from just two weeks ago, which was a bit of a disappointment given its abnormally high $35M budget and strong recognition, in addition to the boost from 3D.

Entourage also opened this weekend, though it was far from impressive. The follow up to the long running HBO series took in just $10.4M this weekend for a soft $17M five day total. It seemed odd that this is just now being released, considering the show peaked in popularity long ago and ended four years ago. It also didn’t help that it was basically just sold as “here’s more shenanigans from the TV show” without making any appeal to the outside demographic. Whether that was the right thing to do or not is debatable, but it shows how much it affected the box office appeal for it. Entourage is probably going to drop like a rock given how fan driven it was and will probably wind up with around $35M total.

Outside of the new openers it was business as usual. Mad Max: Fury Road took in another $7.97M this weekend, a drop of about 44%. The well received car combat flick has just topped $130M domestic and $300M worldwide, a very strong result.

Pitch Perfect 2 also continued to impress with another $7.7M this weekend, tracking a bit above last years 22 Jump Street but falling at a faster rate. Still, it has emassed a whopping $160M thus far and should probably wind up with another $10M or so. Considering it has another $89M from international grosses ($250 WW) and a $29M budget, look for Pitch Perfect 3 to be announced any day now.

San Andreas was also not quite as front loaded as expected, bringing in a very rock solid $26.4M, only falling around 53% for the weekend. Given how Hercules got absolutely crushed last year, that’s a strong result and The Rock’s first strong solo feature. It’s up to $99M domestic, so it should probably either pass $100M this weekend if the results change or on Monday. Still, this will likely end up with around $140M total. Where the real story comes in, though, is overseas, where it should likely demolish $300M for a very solid total (as disaster movies typically do) so don’t be shocked when The Rock starts getting more solo work in the summers to come.

Check in this Thursday for the Weekend Forecast, and a review of “Ex Machina” on Tuesday. Thanks for reading!

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