An October that was supposed to bring respectability back to the box office is derailed for a weekend as we have an outright bomb and a disappointing expansion, but there’s good news in the limited release department.
By Tim Briody
October 11, 2015
The number one film this weekend is The Martian, holding fantastically with $37 million, down just 32% from its opening weekend and sending it over the $100 million mark with $108 million after ten days in theaters. The third film in the Matt Damon Must Be Rescued franchise (after Saving Private Ryan and Interstellar), the novel adaptation is the film of the early fall. With 2013’s Gravity being one of the more obvious comparisons to The Martian, it’s not doing as amazingly in the legs department (Gravity fell on 23% in its second weekend to $43.1 million and had earned $122.3 million after two weekends), but is still no slouch. The Martian is a very strong contender to pass the $200 million mark over the next few weeks.
Hotel Transylvania 2 takes second place again with a third weekend of $20.3 million, off 39% from last week. It’s now got a tidy $116.8 million after three weekends and has its sights set on matching the $148.3 million from the first movie from 2012. It still has the rest of October all to itself until The Peanuts Movie opens November 6th, so it seems to be very likely that Hotel Transylvania 2 will find itself easily over the $150 million mark by the end of the month.
Third place finds the weekend’s biggest new release, Pan. An attempt to origin story Peter Pan containing some…questionable casting and style choices, Pan could only manage $15 million on the weekend. This wouldn’t be the worst news ever had it not cost $150 million to make and was panned met with terrible reviews (23% Fresh at Rotten Tomatoes). It stars Hugh Jackman, Rooney Mara and Garrett Hedlund, with unknown Levi Miller in the titular role. Despite a heavy ad blitz, The Martian was still far and away the choice of most moviegoers this weekend. We’ll apply the usual “maybe the international box office will help” disclaimer here, but domestically, at least, Pan is the flop of the fall so far.
The Intern actually holds in fourth place for the weekend with another $8.6 million, giving it $49.5 million after three weekends of box office. The Robert De Niro/Anne Hathaway comedy is playing solidly to older audiences who often take their time getting the theaters, as it only dropped 26% from last weekend, the best hold among the films in wide release last weekend. It’s headed towards the $75 million mark, meaning there will be more of Nancy Meyers' brand of adult comedy down the line. I know you’re excited.
Oscar contener Sicario earns $7.3 million in its second weekend of wide release, down 39% from last weekend, giving it $26.7 million after roughly a month in theaters. It’s weird to point this out, but its Oscar stock is probably lower than it was two weeks ago, because that’s how these things work. Still, the gritty border drama starring Emily Blunt, Benicio del Toro and Josh Brolin is an early clubhouse leader. This is expected to be a very deep year for awards, so we’ll have to see what develops over the next two months.
Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials places sixth in its fourth weekend with another $5.2 million and $70.6 million to date. It’s going to top out with about $85 million, disappointing considering The Maze Runner was a $102 million hit a year ago, but I still say the filmmakers and Lionsgate are to be commended for not splitting the third book into two movies.
After an IMAX and premium theater release last weekend, The Walk moves to a wide release and is met with a shrug as it earns just $3.6 million on the weekend, giving it a cumulative $6.3 million so far. A biopic that was basically released as the documentary Man on Wire in 2008 (which won the Best Documentary Oscar), it's even less successful in making the jump from IMAX to multiplexes than Everest was a few weeks ago. Despite solid reviews, it just couldn't connect with viewers, perhaps because the ads absolutely terrified some people. It's a rare misfire for lead Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who while not a box office superstar, generally makes solid choices in the roles he picks.
Johnny Depp’s Black Mass takes eighth with $3.1 million and $57.5 million after four weekends in theaters. It remains to be seen whether or not Depp will earn a Best Actor nomination for his portrayal of Whitey Bulger, as critics generally liked his performance but were middling on the movie itself. It's headed towards a final total of just under $70 million.
Everest is another recent under-performer, as it adds another $3 million to its total of $38.2 million after four weekends of box office, three of which have been in wide release. After a promising start in IMAX and premium theaters, the success did not carry over to general theaters. Domestically, it's going to fall short of its production budget of $55 million, but it looks like overseas box office will carry the day yet again.
M. Night Shyamalan's The Visit lands in 10th, adding $2.4 million in its fifth weekend, giving it $61 million to date. It's basically been all gravy for the Universal (who else?) movie since the second day of release, as this one only cost $5 million. After a couple of laughable disasters that probably cost him a lot of creative control and budgetary costs, he's earned a bit of that back thanks to the reception on this one.
Finally, outside of the top 10, Steve Jobs, the biopic directed by Danny Boyle, written by Aaron Sorkin and starring Michael Fassbender as the Apple visionary, opened in just four theaters and took in a remarkable $521,000 for one of the best per screen averages ever. Steve Jobs does not go wide for two more weekends, so we'll have to watch next weekend to see if it expands beyond NY/LA and how well its per screen holds up then.