This weekend comes with its fair share of celebrations and disappointments. While this weekend saw Star Trek Beyond and Ice Age: Collision Course making their reputable debuts, both found themselves making less than their recent predecessors. That’s not to say either of them did bad, but Hollywood typically doesn’t like it when you open with $10-20 million less than your last film. At least, not from my past experiences.
Let’s start with Star Trek Beyond, Justin Lin’s sequel to J.J. Abrams’ rebooted film series, which opened in the number one spot with a respectable $59.6 million — at least until you consider how Star Trek Into Darkness opened with $70.2 million and Star Trek 2009 opened with $75.2 million. Even though some consider Lin’s latest the best in the new trilogy, it does look like it’s a series of demising returns. But that’s not stopping producer Abrams from making a fourth film, evidentially.
I still need to see the film for myself, but word of mouth suggests it’s better than the last (which I actually liked, by the way) and that it brings the fun and adventure of the original series back to the forefront, which is fitting since this is the 50th anniversary of the Gene Roddenberry program. I’m hoping to check it out soon.
Meanwhile, Ice Age: Collision Course slipped down 55 percent from the last installment, bringing in $21 million on its opening weekend after its predecessor, 2012’s Ice Age: Continental Drift, brought in $46.6 million. This is the worst showing for an animated studio tentpole in over a decade, according to THR, but maybe it’s not all doom-and-gloom for the Blue Sky Studios property. The fourth animated sequel is still holding its own overseas, having earned $127 million before its U.S. debut, where it came in fifth place. I missed my screening, but reviews suggest I didn’t miss much, and there’s probably a good reason why U.S. audiences didn’t show up for this one. I’m just saying.
The real animated champion this weekend was The Secret Life of Pets, which came in second place with a solid $29.3 million during its third weekend. For those keeping track at home, The Secret Life of Pets made $8.3 million more on its opening weekend than the Ice Age sequel made during its first weekend. That’s gotta burn. But in any case, the Illumination Entertainment release now has a domestic total of $260.7 million and a worldwide haul of $323.7 million. I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again: this one is a hit.
Also a hit, it seems, is Lights Out, this weekend’s other new release, which scared itself into a $21.6 million debut from its $5 million budget. The James Wan-produced horror flick didn’t quite impress me as it did other critics, including some of our own, but it appears the PG-13 horror flick did well with its effective marketing and will prove a rare success for Warner Bros these days. We’ll see how well it holds up on its second weekend, as these kind of horror flicks tend to drop quicker than a 500 pound weight in the ocean. But for now, the studio is certainly pleased.
Also proving themselves surprisingly successful were Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie and Hillary Clinton: The Secret History of the Democratic Party, the latest from conservative Michael Moore-wannabe and convicted felon Dinesh D’Souza. The former made a $1.9 million splash in its U.S. debut, which bodes the big screen spin-off well, especially with how well it’s doing overseas. While I don’t get its appeal, it’s certainly attracting its audience, and they should probably expect a sequel.
Meanwhile, D’Souza’s latest cracked its way into the top 10 during its nationwide expansion, riding on the coattails of the Republican National Convention. It earned $3.7 million over the weekend, which put it in ninth place. It also comes before the Democratic National Convention, which kicks off in Philadelphia starting Monday.
To round up the report, Paul Feig’s Ghostbusters tied for third place during its second weekend with $21.6 million added to its domestic gross, which is now at $86.6 million. That’s not terrible, but it’s not quite great either. And Finding Dory is now in seventh place with an extra $7.2 million swimming into its sea pocket, which brings its astounding domestic gross to $460.2 million.
Check out the full box office results, via THR and Box Office Mojo, below.
- Star Trek Beyond Weekend: $59.6 million Domestic Total: $59.6 million
- The Secret Life of Pets Weekend: $29.3 million Domestic Total: $260.7 million
- Ghostbusters Weekend: $21.6 million Domestic Total: $86.8 million
- Lights Out Weekend: $21.6 million Domestic Total: $21.6 million
- Ice Age: Collision Course Weekend: $21 million Domestic Total: $21 million
- Finding Dory Weekend: $7.2 million Domestic Total: $460.2 million
- The Legend of Tarzan Weekend: $6.4 million Domestic Total: $115.8 million
- Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates Weekend: $4.4 million Domestic Total: $40.4 million
- Hillary’s America Weekend: $3.7 million Domestic Total: $3.8 million
- The Infiltrator Weekend: $3.3 million Domestic Total: $12.3 million