Weekend Wrap-Up

by Tim Briody

July 29, 2018

Notice that Henry Cavill was just looking at his phone.

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Arguably the last marquee release of the summer, Tom Cruise returns to his most reliable franchise, one that seems to get better and better as it goes on.

The sixth entry in the Mission: Impossible franchise, this one subtitled Fallout (the colon sure makes these titles awkward, but hey, it's better than calling it Mission: Impossible 6), arrives with a solid $61.5 million opening weekend. That's the highest figure in the history of the franchise, one that isn't as much of a worldbeater as you'd think. Fallout bests the $57.8 million of Mission: Impossible II, from all the way back in 2000. That one's also the top domestic earner in the franchise, with $215.4 million, though the last two came close, with Ghost Protocol earning $209 million in a December 2011 launch and Rogue Nation, released on this weekend three years ago, earning $195 million.

Six movies in, the franchise is growing and there's a clear reason why. Upon returning from exile after 2006's Mission: Impossible 3 disappointed with just a $47.7 million opening and $133.5 million domestic total (that was Tom Cruise's Crazy Couch Jumping Phase, remember), Ghost Protocol arrived with a bizarre national release, and earned $12 million in 425 theaters before expanding to 3,488 the following weekend and earning $29.5 million, a figure it would also earn the following weekend thanks to the holiday money train. The box office rebound was largely credited to the quality: after the first three films were given largely middling reviews (they've got Rotten Tomatoes scores of 63%, 57% and 70% respectively), Ghost Protocol (93%) began a trend that continued with Rogue Nation (93%), and now Fallout (97%) is up there among the best reviewed movies of the year. Quality still counts for something these days.

Fallout returned nearly everyone from the last few movies, including Simon Pegg, Ving Rhames, Rebecca Ferguson, Alec Baldwin and Michelle Monaghan (who hadn't been seen since M:I 3), while it added Henry Cavill and Angela Bassett. Jeremy Renner (playing Sir Not-Appearing-In-This-Film) continues to have a bad year.

With the best start in the franchise's history, glowing reviews and a clear path over the next few weekends, it's extremely likely that Fallout will end up as the top film in the franchise by the end of August. Worldwide, of course, Mission: Impossible has always done well, with the last two earning around $700 million each. Hopefully Cruise is still willing to do his own stunts every few years as he approaches 60.


Mamma Mia: here We Go Again! holds in second place despite a 57% drop from last weekend to $15 million. It's got $70.4 million in two weekends. The hold is pretty bad compared to the original, which only fell 36% in its second weekend; however, despite losing last weekend, it's now ahead of the film that beat it...

...Which is The Equalizer 2. The Denzel Washington action film fared worse than Mamma Mia in its second weekend, dropping 61% to $14 million and $64.2 million to date. The Sequelizer (I'm going to make fetch happen with this, you watch) was reportedly priced at $62 million so it's got that back. It doesn't have much in the way of international grosses just yet (The Equalizer pulled in around $90 million), but I imagine Sony will get on that soon.

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation takes fourth with $12.3 million, down 48% from last weekend. Suddenly what seemed like a lock to be the top film in the franchise (needing $169.7 million) may not quite get there, as it's got $119.2 million in three weekends. I expected better weekend holds to go along with the solid summer weekdays since the first two entries were September releases.

Down in fifth place we have the second opener this weekend, Teen Titans Go! To The Movies, with $10.5 million. A theatrical adaptation of a popular Cartoon Network (*not* Adult Swim, by the way) series featuring a Z-team of DC superheroes (insert your "so, the Justice League?" joke here), this is the very definition of a niche product, so $10 million is pretty good. I think it got a small bump from the good reviews, coming in with an impressive 90% Fresh at Rotten Tomatoes. I expect a pretty quick drop-off, though, as this one's for the fans of the show and not too many others.

Ant-Man and the Wasp creeps closer to $200 million with another $8.4 million this weekend (down 49%) and $183.1 million in four weekends. That's more than the $180.2 million of the first one, and there's still a bit left in the tank.

The year of Disney dominance continues with The Incredibles 2 in seventh, with $7.1 million and $572.7 million in seven weekends. It's looking to fall just a bit short of $600 million at this rate.

Universal claims the last three spots in the top ten this weekend, with Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom just about getting to $400 million in eighth place with $6.7 million and $397.5 million in six weekends, The Rock's Skyscraper continuing to disappoint with $5.4 million (down 52%) and $59.1 million in three weekends and The First Purge wrapping up the chart this week with $2.2 million and a profitable $65.4 million in four weekends.

Your top 12 films this weekend tallied up $146.2 million, just ahead of last year's $138.2 million when Dunkirk led with $26.6 million and The Emoji Movie swindled $24.5 million out of families.

Next weekend we flip the calendar to August, and that brings us the mixed bag of family entry Christopher Robin, female comedy The Spy Who Dumped Me and young adult adaptation The Darkest Minds.

Top Ten for Weekend of
Gross ($)
Weekly Change
Gross ($)
1 Mission: Impossible - Fallout Paramount 61.5 New 61.5
2 Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again! Universal 15.0 -57% 70.4
3 The Equalizer 2 Sony Pictures 14.0 -61% 64.2
4 Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation Sony Pictures 12.3 -48% 119.2
5 Teen Titans Go! To The Movies Warner Bros. 10.5 New 10.5
6 Ant-Man and the Wasp Walt Disney 8.4 -49% 183.1
7 The Incredibles 2 Walt Disney 7.1 -40% 572.7
8 Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom Universal 6.8 -40% 397.6
9 Skyscraper Universal 5.4 -53% 59.2
10 The First Purge Universal 2.2 -56% 65.5



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