Weekend Report: ‘Star Wars’ Repeats, ‘Hateful Eight’ Solid


(Apologies for the lack of updates recently. This was due to the holidays, and updates will return normally)

Star Wars: The Force Awakens easily held on to first place for a third week in a row, despite a slew of competition and a solid opening from the new Quentin Tarantino film, The Hateful EightAnomalisa and The Revenant posted strong numbers in limited release, while last weeks openers saw mixed results in their second weekends.

Star Wars took in another $88.3M in its third weekend, bringing its total to an astronomical $740M. It’s important to remember that a large amount of the films gross is coming from weekdays, rather than traditional weekends. Had it come out on a more traditional time of year, it likely would’ve gotten over $100M this weekend. Still, this is $20M over the previous third-weekend record (Avatar) which is an incredibly strong result. That brings it up to 21st place adjusted for inflation, and still has a long way to go. It can almost certainly get to $900M, but is there a legitimate chance at a billion? It’s insane to think that that is even a possibility, but at this point it is certainly in play. Topping a billion would make it the 9th highest grossing film ever, and given that it’s keeping its IMAX screens for nearly another month, that’s a very serious possibility.

In second place, Daddy’s Home took in an excellent $29M in its second weekend, down 25% from last weekend. That brings its total to a fantastic $93M, and it can still probably get another $50M out of its gross. Even though it has made next to nothing overseas, that’s hardly surprising. Will Ferrell comedies always make 90% or more of their gross from the domestic market, but making over $100M guarantees that this is a hit.

After two strong weeks in its 100 theater roadshow, The Hateful Eight saw a solid $16M opening weekend. Combined with its Wednesday and Thursday numbers and it’s roadshow, it has taken in $29.5M. That is considerably less than the opening of films like Django Unchained or Inglorious Basterds, but that isn’t overly surprising. The film had much more competition, a lighter marketing campaign, and had its release date changed several times over the last month. Had it opened normally on the 8th as planned, it probably could’ve done over $25M. Django Unchained had the advantage of little competition, a Christmas release date, much more stars and action. Hateful Eight was a 3 hour film that primarily took place in one room. That isn’t as marketable of a premise, and the fact that this managed to take over $20M in its first five days despite waves of competition is a testament to Tarantino’s fanbase. With some awards season buzz and not a ton of new releases (it is January, after all…) it still has a shot at good holds and a solid gross. $100M seems like a stretch, but $80M is a good range. It received a mediocre B Cinemascore, but having seen the film myself, I can say fairly confidently that it is fairly graphic (even by Tarantino standards) and isn’t something that would click with audiences who didn’t know what they were getting themselves into.

Sisters dipped a light 11% to $12.5M, essentially unchanged for three weeks now. With a very strong $61M gross, the R rated party film could potentially flirt with $90M or more.

Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip fell 10% to $11.8M, bringing its total up to $67M. That’s $30M lower than the previous film in the franchise at the same point, which isn’t a great result.

Joy fell a fairly sharp 39% to $10.4M. That’s not a great hold for a Christmas release, and was much sharper than David O. Russel’s previous films. After two weeks, the film has taken in just $38M, which is a fairly weak result for such a star studded film.

In just 4 theaters, Anomalisa took in a strong $213K over its first five days. That gives it a five day start average of $53K. While that isn’t as strong as some other much more anticipated films, the Charlie Kaufman stop motion animation will almost certainly see plenty of awards buzz, and its 97% Rotten Tomatoes score won’t hurt either. There’s almost zero chance this becomes a big hit in nationwide release, but it can probably pull around $5-$10M if it gets a legitimate expansion.

After over a month in wide release, Creed finally passed the century mark, with a very strong $103.4M total after 6 weeks. The surprise hit sports drama may be able to top $110M domestic, giving it a worldwide total of around $150M if it can do well in certain foreign markets. What’s funny is that this $35M sports drama has nearly doubled the domestic gross of Fantastic Four, Jordan’s last major outing. With some awards buzz, this can likely squeeze out a bit more, but will likely be big in the Home Video market as well.




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