Friday Box Office Analysis
By Tim Briody
August 13, 2016
It’s a virtual tie on Friday as extremely hard R-rated animated comedy Sausage Party earns $13.5 million, essentially tied with Suicide Squad for first place on the day. Sausage Party was expected to be a big wild card at the box office; there’s virtually nothing to compare it to outside of South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut, which is a movie that is nearly old enough to vote. Things could’ve gone horribly wrong, but instead it’s getting solid reviews. It ended up with a B CinemaScore, a grade I attribute to people who didn’t know what they were getting into when they bought a ticket weighing down the A scores.
$3.3 million of Sausage Party’s Friday take came from Thursday night showings, giving it an actual Friday of $10.2 million. Since it’s for older audiences and decidedly not kids, I expect a small bump on Saturday but a bigger dip on Sunday (South Park, besides being several epochs ago in terms of box office, also opened over a five day July 4th weekend, making it a miserable comparison), meaning Suicide Squad probably has the edge for the weekend crown. Still, a weekend of $31.6 million is quite good for what it is.
The live action remake of Pete’s Dragon earns $6.9 million on Friday, which is okay, but probably not what Disney was hoping for given the success of The Jungle Book earlier this year. Granted, it’s a lesser known story, but still. It’s going to be the family film of choice for the weekend, provided parents can successfully dissuade their preteens from asking them to buy tickets to Sausage Party. Look for a weekend of $22.5 million.
Florence Foster Jenkins
Early Oscar contender (because of Meryl Streep) biopic Florence Foster Jenkins earns $2 million in 1,528 theaters on Friday. While its actual awards prospects are to be determined (if it were a shoo-in, it’d probably get released later on in the year), one can never count out Streep. That doesn’t mean it’s going to be a blockbuster at the box office, though. A weekend of $6.1 million is just fine, though.
As mentioned earlier, Suicide Squad’s second Friday is in a virtual tie with Sausage Party, at $13.4 million. That would be a massive 79% Friday-to-Friday decline, which basically everybody was expecting to happen. When you take out Suicide Squad’s big Thursday night earnings last weekend, you got an actual Friday of $44.6 million, which makes the Friday-to-Friday decline a mere 70%. That is not good. What’s about to happen is that a film that earned $133 million in its first three days may not make $300 million total. It stands at $192.4 million after eight days in theaters. The DC brand is broken at this point, and it’s down to next year’s Wonder Woman to see if it can be salvaged. For the weekend, it should pass Sausage Party with a total of $37.8 million.