Weekend Wrap-Up

Openers Surprise to the Upside at Weekend Box Office

By John Hamann

July 31, 2016

Damon wants to prove his body is equal to or better than Affleck's.

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Seventh is the sadness that is the Ghostbusters reboot, something that should have been joyful and appreciated, but seems to have become the opposite. The reboot earned another $9.8 million this frame, but after a drop last weekend of 54%, and now a drop this weekend of 53%, this one is in serious trouble. Ghostbusters cost $144 million (someone thought it was a sure thing, and heads are going to roll), and has a gross to date of $106.2 million, as it falls over the $100 million mark on Saturday. Overseas totals are also pathetic at $52 million.

Eighth is Lionsgate’s Nerve, which has a low rank but is still successful. Nerve, with Emma Roberts and Dave Franco, took in $9 million over the Friday-to-Sunday portion of the weekend, and $15 million since opening on Wednesday. In the last 15 years, I cannot remember a single success from opening a film on a Wednesday, but Lionsgate knew that A) they had a good film, and B) were going to get buried by Bad Moms on Friday night. This strategy worked as buzz was going to travel prior to the weekend, and this film was aimed at the demo that has the speediest word-of-mouth. The Cinemascore is an A-, and while likely critic-proof, the 56% fresh rating at Rotten Tomatoes could have been much, much worse. I understand that this film will have people talking, but will it be enough to lift the ranking versus Suicide Squad next weekend? I doubt it. It still has some work to do, as the budget for Nerve came in at $20 million.


Ninth is Finding Dory, as even the biggest star of the summer has to fade at some point. This weekend, Finding Dory’s seventh, the little fish that could earned another $4.2 million, down 42% compared to last weekend. It currently sits as the eighth biggest release ever, having passed the original Star Wars and all of its follow up releases last week. The domestic total sits at $469 million and it will catch Star Wars: The Phantom Menace at $474.5 million for seventh, where it will likely stay. Overseas, the number is gaining on the domestic total, as it sits with $362 million, which means this should eventually be another billion dollar winner for Disney and Pixar.

Tenth is The Legend of Tarzan, a film that started slowly and then gained traction - but was never going to make up for its insane $180 million budget. This weekend, Tarzan earned another $2.4 million and fell 63%. It has earned $121.9 million domestic, and $187 million overseas.

Overall this weekend, the box office is hot, with healthy grosses all the way down to the eighth placed film. The top 12 came in at $177 million, well ahead of the $146 million last year when Mission: Impossible – Rouge Nation dominated, and Vacation flopped. Next weekend we play for the big money, as Suicide Squad opens. For me, it’s simple: if people and reviewers like it, I’m there. If not, I guess I will have a double feature on Netflix with Batman v Superman in a few years, after the DC/Warner Bros. funeral.

Top Ten for Weekend of
Estimated Gross (millions)
Weekly Change
Running Total (millions)
1 Jason Bourne Universal 60.0 New 60.0
2 Star Trek Beyond Paramount 24.0 -60% 105.7
3 Bad Moms STX Entertainment 23.4 New 23.4
4 The Secret Life of Pets Universal 18.2 -35% 296.2
5 Lights Out Warner Bros. 10.8 -50% 42.9
6 Ice Age: Collision Course 20th Century Fox 10.6 -51% 42.1
7 Ghostbusters Sony 9.8 -53% 106.2
8 Nerve Lionsgate 9.0 New 15.1
9 Finding Dory Walt Disney 4.2 -42% 469.0
10 The Legend of Tarzan Warner Bros. 2.4 -63% 121.9
11 Hillary's America: The Secret History of the Democratic Party Quality Flix 2.4 -40% 8.7
12 Cafe Society Lionsgate 2.3 +165% 3.9

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