Jungle Book Rules, Civil War Looms
By John Hamann
May 1, 2016
Keanu, the new film with Comedy Central standouts Key & Peele, finishes in third place, though that position may change when actuals are reported. Despite being marketed like mad, Keanu failed to make much of an impact at the box office. The comedy earned $9.35 million from a muted screen count of 2,658. The count is either a mistake, or a brilliant piece of strategy. Critics embraced Keanu (it earned a 76% fresh rating) and when it goes up against Civil War next weekend, Warner Bros. can still expand if they want and maybe leg out a win. For now, the opening is somewhat soft, but it has a real opportunity to play as counter-programming over the next few weekends.
Keanu’s Cinemascore does not support expansion unfortunately, and will likely seal the fate of the comedy. The Cinemascore came in at a B, definitely lackluster for comedy, as it earns the same score as the Tina Fey miss, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, as well as recent box office nightmares like Allegiant and Batman v Superman. The good news is that Keanu cost only $15 million to make, so if it can find cult status, or earn 3.5 times its opening weekend, Warner Bros. should do just fine with this one. The bad news is that this probably doesn’t play well overseas, putting pressure on that final domestic gross.
Fourth is Mother’s Day, which is another of those Hallmark Holiday movies that has a stellar cast but no script or direction. Garry Marshall, the man who brought you classics like New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day, is back creating his own kind of destruction this weekend with another bad film. This one is 9% fresh at RottenTomatoes, lower than The Boss, lower than Allegiant or even God’s Not Dead 2. Audiences caught on, and Mother’s Day earned only $8.3 million from 3,035 venues.
Open Road Films is distributing Mother’s Day for a fee, so the production companies behind this dreck have to hope that it really pulls audiences in next Sunday, on Mother’s Day. It had better – this piece of sunshine cost $25 million to make, a figure I doubt this one will see throughout its domestic run. The good news is that New Year’s Eve earned more overseas that it did domestically, and Valentine’s Day was close. It earned a B+ Cinemascore, so all is not lost, but the production companies behind this one need to really hope for a foreign bailout.
Fifth is Barbershop: The Next Cut, which is now in its third weekend. After a slightly softer than expected opening and a somewhat hurtful second weekend drop of 48%, this MGM, Warner Bros. product was looking to even the ship this weekend. The Ice Cube starrer took in $6.1 million in weekend three, bringing its domestic total up to $44.7 million. This one simply should have been bigger. It cost $20 million to make and should eke out a profit before it exits theaters.
Zootopia is sixth, and is still showing admirably well, as despite nine weekends of release and a gross beyond $320 million, it still continues to hold. This weekend, it earned $5 million, and even though it lost another 300 screens, the Disney release fell only 24%. It won’t reach $400 million domestic, but it should pull another $20 million stateside, adding to its current total of $323.5 million, and finish within an arm's reach of $350 million. Overseas, Zootopia crossed the $600 million mark, as it tries to reach $1 billion worldwide.