Deuces Wild for Jump and Dragon at Weekend Box Office
By John Hamann
June 15, 2014
"Jump" and "Train" (as in locomotive) are appropriate words to describe the box office this weekend, as both 22 Jump Street and How to Train Your Dragon 2 got off to strong starts at the box office.
Yes, it was sequel showdown, as Sony and MGM used 22 Jump Street to control the dragons in Fox and DreamWorks Animation’s How to Train Your Dragon 2. Both films were at the opposite end of the demographic spectrum, with Jump Street being an R-Rated comedy, and HTTYD2 for the family audience. Stacked onto that, the box office had the second weekends of The Fault in Our Stars and Edge of Tomorrow, and Disney and Angelina Jolie still have Maleficent cooking. A year ago this weekend, Man of Steel opened to $116 million, so the box office had to combine strongly if it was to stay ahead of last year’s $197 million take. This year brings some new competition into the fold, as the World Cup, a very late finishing Stanley Cup final on Friday night, the NBA finals and the US Open all threw curveballs at the box office this weekend.
The number one film of the weekend is 22 Jump Street, which is a bit of a surprise, as most thought How To Train Your Dragon 2 was the film to beat. However, with the leggy success of the first Jump Street, a couple of hot actors in Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum, and sought after directors in Phil Lord and Chris Miller (The LEGO Movie), Jump Street had what it took to win the weekend – harder-hitting marketing and a great trailer. 22 Jump Street got started on Thursday night, when preview amounts came in at a very strong $5.5 million, showing that the Sony comedy was a force to be reckoned with. Neighbors earned about half that preview amount and it went on to a $19.6 million Friday and $49 million opening frame.
The Friday for 22 Jump Street was extremely strong, coming in at $25.2 million, less the $5.5 million from Thursday, for a "true" Friday of $19.7 million. To compare, Neighbors' "true" Friday came in just shy of $17 million. Last year’s This Is the End earned $20.7 million over its entire weekend. The first Hangover movie earned $16.7 million on opening day and turned that into a $45 million opening frame, while Ted earned $20.6 million on Friday on the way to a $54.4 million debut. The Saturday for 22 Jump Street came in at $18.8 million, off 26% from the preview-inflated Friday, and earned an estimated $16 million on Sunday.
The weekend estimate for 22 Jump Street came in at $60 million, giving it the second highest R-rated comedy opening ever, behind only The Hangover Part II, which opened to $85.9 million in 2011, but ahead of Sex and the City ($57 million) and Ted ($54.4 million). It is the biggest live action debut for both Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill, but oddly enough, it’s also the second biggest opening for both of them, behind The LEGO Movie ($69.1 million), which also came from the directors of Jump Street.