Weekend Report: “Ant-Man” Takes Lowest MCU Debut Yet, “Trainwreck” Solid

Proving that Marvel fans will, in fact, show up to pretty much anything, Ant-Man took first place with a decent $58M. That’s a bit lower than the $65M that tracking had it at, but a difference like that is nothing too worrying. That’s a fine debut, and shows how strong the brand is right now. Even with DC about to flood the market next year, it seems we have a ways to go before we can really call a Marvel films box office “disappointing”. However, the lowest grossing film in the MCU right now is The Incredible Hulk, with around $152M adjusted for inflation. With competition from Pixels and Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation in the next few weeks, Ant-Man could be the new film to bear that unfortunate record.

Regardless of that, it still is a fine start for a film that was intentionally marketed as a smaller, more contained film (both figuratively and literally) and with a smaller $130M budget as opposed to the usual $170M-$200M+ for the last few films. They seem to understand that not every Marvel film has to top the last one in scale, as making a solo film on a less epic level can still translate to a solid film.

So far, word of mouth seems to be strong, with an 80% on Rotten Tomatoes and an excellent A on Cinemascore, meaning it could potentially wind up with over $140M. Still, don’t expect this to hold nearly as well as last years Guardians of the Galaxy, as that had much better word of mouth and basically two months with little competition.

After plummeting on Friday, Minions balanced out with a huge Saturday jump and managed to bring in another $50.2M, That’s a drop of 56%, which certainly isn’t good but isn’t awful either. Last months Inside Out fell only 42% in its second weekend, meaning despite a smaller opening will likely have the highest domestic gross in the long run. However, it also had a $175M budget (compared to less than half of that for Minions, which will likely take a higher foreign gross, so its hard to say who will be the true winner until the dust all settles in a few months.

In third place, Amy Schumer’s big screen debut Trainwreck managed to top expectations of a mid-$20’s debut with an excellent $30M. The $35M comedy is receiving strong word of mouth (A- on Cinemascore) and excellent reviews with an 85% on Rotten Tomatoes right now. The fact that an otherwise very cliche looking romantic comedy managed to have such a strong debut can largely be credited to Amy herself, as her standup and sketch comedy show has been making waves on social media during the last few months, going from nearly unknown to massively popular in just about a year. This may actually end up being fairly front loaded for a comedy as female driven films typically do (Fifty Shades and Magic Mike) but $100M isn’t out of the question. It’s also impressive that this managed to top the debut of Spy, which had a much higher budget, Paul Feig and more appeal towards the male audience. Just goes to show that Amy Schumer is now seemingly more popular than Melissa McCarthy (who, to be fair, tarnished her image with several bad films).

Finally passing the $600M mark (and the fastest to do so in just 36 days) was Jurassic World, which continues to break record over a month after release. That’s particularly impressive given that Ant-Man was the first actual competition for the reboot yet it still only fell 37%. Also, even after 6 weekends it has yet to fall over 50%. It does seem to be losing steam but will probably be able to top the total gross of The Avengers ($623M) within the next few weeks.

Terminator: Genisys continued to not-surprise, falling over 60% in its third weekend. It is currently tracking just $1M behind The Lone Ranger, meaning it has only around $5-$10M left before the end of its domestic run. Overseas is still continuing to give it some hope, with a solid $256M worldwide total so far. Regardless, it would need another $150M to turn a decent profit, so it seems like the planned franchise will be put on a permanent hiatus fairly soon.

* The Incredible Hulk opened with $55M, but when adjusted for inflation on boxofficemojo actually took a bit over $60M

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