Weekend Wrap-Up

Sully Soars; Other Openers Crash and Burn

By John Hamann

September 11, 2016

Is it wrong to be disappointed this isn't a Monsters, Inc. sequel?

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The rest of the top ten has some traditional September sadness. Suicide Squad is fourth, but really just by default, as it has been out now for six weekends. This time around, Suicide Squad earned another $5.7 million and dropped 43%. Its domestic total is up to $307.4 million, and the worldwide take is $700 million.

Fifth is new release The Wild Life, an animated feature starring no one. Kids gave this one the collective shrug this weekend, as it earned only $3.4 million. This will be gone next weekend, so there is no point spending time on it.

Kubo and the Two Strings is sixth. This weekend, the Focus Features/Laika release earned $3.2 million and declined 49%. It’s too bad – Kubo is 97% fresh at RottenTomatoes but has a domestic gross of only $40.8 million against a $60 million budget. Kubo has earned only $8 million overseas, but is rolling into some bigger markets this weekend.

Pete’s Dragon is seventh, and like Suicide Squad, is simply a deflating balloon at this point. This weekend, Pete and his Dragon earned another $2.9 million, dropping 54% compared to last weekend. The $65 million release has now at least matched its production budget stateside ($70 million), but the overseas is currently not enough at $32 million and is running out of countries to open in. I have not liked how Disney has handled their overseas rollouts this summer, as I believe they left money on the table with both Finding Dory and Pete’s Dragon.


Bad Moms is eighth, as its run is coming to a close. Bad Moms earned another $2.8 million this weekend, bringing its domestic total up to $107.5 million. Overseas, it has earned $44 million, and has accumulated all of that against a production budget of only $20 million.

Hell or High Water added another 145 screens but was not able to keep the momentum it had last weekend, when it boosted its venue count by 400 screens and earned $4.4 million. This time around, Hell or High Water earned $2.6 million and fell 41%, the first time it has dropped since it opened. The $12 million Lionsgate/CBS Films release has now brought the domestic total up to $19.8 million and has become a rare platform release success. Lionsgate’s marketing division has done a remarkable job with High Water, even if it’s not a huge theatrical success. This one will make money eventually, after it's sold to Netflix, Hulu or one of the other streamers.

Sausage Party is tenth, and it’s funny how this one has seen diminishing returns as school gets back in session. This weekend, its fifth, the animated adult release earned another $2.3 million and dropped 56%. Even if this one goes quickly away, it is still a smashing success. Made for $19 million, Sausage Party has earned $93.2 million domestically and $20 million overseas. It still has over a dozen overseas markets to open in.

Missing the top ten this weekend is The Disappointments Room, the first release from Relativity Media since coming out of bankruptcy protection. Not only did it miss the top ten, it earned only $1.4 million, finishing 17th. The gross is ugly, and so are the reviews and Cinemascore. Like When the Bough Breaks, this is currently 0% fresh at RottenTomatoes (only seven reviews), and it earned a impressively bad Cinemascore of D. Is it just me, or did there seem to be zero marketing for this film?

Overall this weekend, despite Sully, the box office could only keep up with last year, instead of beating it. This weekend’s top 12 came in at $85.8 million, just ahead of last year’s top 12 total, which came in at $85.2 million. Next weekend will be very interesting. Oliver Stone’s Snowden opens, which is splitting critics into love it or hate it camps. Also opening is the Blair Witch reboot, which is getting glowing reviews, the same as Bridget Jones’ Baby – two films I thought would crater with critics.

Top Ten for Weekend of
Estimated Gross (millions)
Weekly Change
Running Total (millions)
1 Sully Warner Bros. 35.5 New 35.5
2 When the Bough Breaks Screen Gems 15.0 New 15.0
3 Don't Breathe Screen Gems 8.2 -48% 66.8
4 Suicide Squad Warner Bros. 5.7 -43% 307.4
5 The Wild Life Lionsgate 3.4 New 3.4
6 Kubo and the Two Strings Focus Features 3.2 -49% 40.8
7 Pete's Dragon Walt Disney 2.9 -54% 70.0
8 Bad Moms STX Entertainment 2.8 -41% 107.5
9 Hell or High Water Lionsgate 2.6 -41% 19.8
10 Sausage Party Sony 2.3 -56% 93.2
11 No Manches Frida Lionsgate 2.2 -42% 7.4
12 War Dogs Warner Bros. 2.0 -58% 39.8

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