Friday Box Office Analysis
By Tim Briody
June 18, 2016
The long awaited/delayed Finding Nemo sequel earns a massive $54.9 million on Friday, which is not only the best single day of box office in Pixar’s history, but the best single day of box office by an animated film, crushing the old single day animation records of the second day of Shrek the Third in 2007 ($47 million) and the first day of last year’s Minions ($46 million). Pixar movies have never been huge openers, save for Toy Story 3 ($110.3 million) and Inside Out ($90.4 million), but Finding Dory is going to blow both of those away which is a bit of an understatement considering it’s already halfway to Toy Story 3 after a single day.
The important thing with Pixar releases is, at least on opening weekend, they don’t behave like traditional animated/family films. There’s a bit of a Friday rush factor to them, as the last two summer releases, Monsters University and Inside Out, had relatively poor weekend multipliers. The same pattern should hold true for Finding Dory, and should it follow the trajectory of Inside Out, that’s a weekend of $144.9 million. The bigger numbers will make it a little harder to duplicate, so we’ll go with a weekend of $140 million, which is still absolutely phenomenal for what’s is clearly a worthy sequel to Pixar’s best movie.
The teaming of The Rock and Kevin Hart pays off as Central Intelligence earns a solid $13 million on Friday. As someone who always wished The Rock would do more comedy and less action, an action buddy comedy is pretty much a perfect vehicle for him between filming basically every franchise out there (how he hasn’t been in a Marvel comic adaptation yet is beyond me). Hart also stayed hot after earning $90 million in January with Ride Along 2, so the timing of the combination is perfect and will likely lead to another sequel down the line. An opening weekend of $34 million for Central Intelligence is an solid start.
Both The Conjuring 2 and Now You See Me 2 drop 67% in their second Fridays, to $5.4 million and $2.8 million respectively. The Conjuring’s drop is not really a surprise as it’s kind of par for the course for the genre (though it’s a jump from the 56% Friday to Friday decline of the original) but Now You See Me 2 is the latest victim of Unwanted Sequel Syndrome, as generally well received as the first one was. I like to think of it as karma for not calling the movie Now You Don’t. Anyway, look for second weekends of $15.3 million for The Conjuring 2 and $8.1 million for Now You See Me 2
Meanwhile, it’s a complete wipe for Warcraft in weekend two as it plummets 82% from last Friday to just $1.9 million. The foreign server international earnings will carry the day for it here, but domestically, it’s acting like quite the noob. Look for a second weekend of $5.7 million.