February 2017 Box Office Recap
By Steven Slater
March 2, 2017
Our number four earner for the shortest month is a holdover, the surprise hit Split. After the largest opening last month, Split has taken in $50.3 million this month, bringing the Blumhouse-produced film (i.e., tiny budget) to a domestic total of $131.5 million. There should be a sequel coming titled The Unbreakable Kimmy Split.
Fifth is another holdover, a movie that has been extremely well received by audiences. The best picture nominee Hidden Figures did not win any oscars, but it is the highest grossing (wide) release of 2017. February saw it earn $47.2 million, bringing its domestic total over $150 million. LEGO Batman will soon overtake it as the highest grossing release of the year, before at least one of the blockbusters in March takes the crown.
The movie that holds sixth place for the month is only held back by the fact that it just opened. The number three opening weekend belongs to Get Out, which triumphed with a per screen average of over $10,000, an opening weekend of $33.38 million, and a monthly total of $42.4 million. This film is performing way above expectations and should chug along all through March, as an incredible directing debut from Jordan Peele. It also happens to be another huge success story for Blumhouse Productions. By the way, it was 100% fresh at Rotten Tomatoes, until a certain critic gave it a lousy review. Guess who it was? Why is life’s irony meter pegged at “insanity” right now?
Now we fall to some of the lesser films of February. Seventh is A Dog’s Purpose, a movie that had to contend with some fake bad press, but still achieved a modest amount of $37.6 million for the month after opening at the end of January. Eighth is The Great Wall, where it seems they really wanted Leonardo DiCaprio but had to settle for Matt Damon (look at the poster!). Jimmy Kimmel must be laughing himself silly. The Chinese co-production only managed $36.6 million for the month, about double its opening weekend. But like last year’s Warcraft, expect this film to make most of its coin in China, something that will probably become more and more common. The only difference is this film was made for Chinese audiences, another trend that should become more common.
Our last two films are La La Land, destined to be famous for not winning best picture, and Rings, a sequel that will quickly be forgotten. LLL, one letter away from a hate group, made $33 million for the month, and it looks like it will not quite make it to the level of Chicago box office or Oscar-wise (although they both won six). Rings made $27.4 million, which is about a hundred million under what the first film made 15 years ago. In case you were wondering, A Cure for Wellness was the 18th highest grossing film for the month, with $7.8 million, so at least Rings has that going for it (Gore Verbinski had a rough month).
To round out the top ten openers that debuted in February, add Fist Fight, the aforementioned A Cure for Wellness, The Space Between Us, and Rock Dog. Yeah, it was hard just to find ten films that opened this February. Had you even heard of Rock Dog? It had better be an animated film starring Jack Black. Let us hope that March delivers big time, as 2017 is looking as bleak as the United States has been warm (or California has been wet). At least we can say both months have delivered surprisingly great films in Hidden Figures and Get Out. Will Logan be the next?