Strange Days Indeed at the Box Office
By John Hamann
November 6, 2016
Trolls cost more than The Peanuts Movie to make, with the budget coming in at $125 million, which means it needs to earn a heavy $375 million worldwide. Can it make it? Reviews were decent at 74% fresh, but it didn't see Pixar-style critical marks. The Cinemascore came in at an A, the same score that Inside Out earned, but on the other hand, also the same score as The Good Dinosaur. Given the opening, we can't expect much more than $150 million stateside, which means overseas revenues will need to offer up a large $225 million. It has already earned $100 million plus overseas, so it will be close, and with decent numbers, could be a down payment on a lucrative franchise. It could also just end up a massive hit, like Madagascar, an original that earned $193 million stateside and $339 million overseas.
Third spot goes to the enigma amongst the three openers, Mel Gibson's Hacksaw Ridge, starring Andrew Garfield. It has been a decade since Mel Gibson brought Apocalypto to the screen, earning $120 million worldwide against a $40 million budget, despite the film not starring English-speaking actors. Following time off after his drunken rant many moons ago, Gibson is back, directing a faith-based war film, or a faith-based film masquerading as a war movie. Whether it is Gibson or the faith-based crowd, Hacksaw Ridge opened where it needed to in order to financially. Hacksaw Ridge earned $14.8 million over the weekend following a $5.2 million Friday. Keeping in mind that Doctor Strange and Trolls gobbled up 8,000 screens, it's tough to get noticed on a weekend like that. To have this kind of debut amongst the noise has to be good news.
Hacksaw Ridge received solid reviews, earning an 87% fresh rating at Rotten Tomatoes, and a 93% score from "top critics" (as decided by the site). The Cinemascore was also excellent at an A, which should create some legs going forward. Mel Gibson has a big enough name overseas to make an impact, especially with a movie about World War II. Gibson's film The Beaver earned less than a million stateside, but earned almost $7 million overseas, mostly on his name alone. Hacksaw Ridge begins a slow rollout overseas this weekend and hits more markets as Christmas approaches. Hacksaw Ridge was made for $40 million, so it does have a bit of an uphill climb after this opening frame.
Boo! A Madea Halloween finishes fourth after consecutive first place finishes the last two weekends. With Halloween in the rear-view mirror, it's no surprise there is a giant drop for Madea this weekend. Boo! earned $7.8 million in its third frame and fell a scary 55%. Tyler Perry gets a film beyond the $60 million domestic mark this weekend, as the total sits at $65 million - that's the first time since 2012's Madea's Witness Protection, which finished with $65.7 million.
Inferno sees an ugly fall after opening to a terrible $14.9 million last weekend. In its second frame, the Ron Howard flick fell 58%, earning only $6.3 million. Inferno is officially in ugly mode now, as it has a gross to date of $26.1 million against a $75 million budget. As expected, though, it is getting a giant assist overseas, as it has already earned more than $150 million over there.