Monday, January 13, 2020

Monday's Headlines | Weekend Box Office

Universal Pictures has officially earned bragging rights now that its World War I action flick 1917 has unseated Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker in the second weekend in January. Directed by Sam Mendes, 1917 stars Dean-Charles Chapman and George McKay as two British soldiers tasked to get a message to across enemy lines to warn of an impending attack with no time to spare. In its first weekend in wide release, 1917 earned $36.5 million domestic, bringing its total here in the U.S. up to $39.2 million.

1917 has technically been in domestic theaters since Christmas Day but that theater count? Just 11 total. This weekend, things are looking up as 1917 went into wide release and brought its theater count up to 3,434 with a per theater average of $10,629. This is Mendes’ first non-James Bond film since 2009’s Away We Go, which opened to just $130K. To be fair, Away We Go is significantly more different in its vibe and genre to both Bond pics as well as 1917, so it’s not really a fair fight. But, it’s nice to see Mendes thriving especially since 1917 is not reliant on the Bond buzz to get folks into theaters to see it.

Oscar buzz has been building here in the U.S. since 1917 was shown to critics and journalists in New York City and Los Angeles back in November 2019. Positive reactions have been showered on the film’s cinematographer, the beloved Roger Deakins, who worked with Mendes to give 1917 a one-shot effect which has helped the pulse-pounding, clock-watching aspect of the movie onto the big screen. Despite the film premiering so close to the 2020 Oscars (nominees will be announced on Monday, January 13), 1917 is poised to scoop up at least one nom for this year’s ceremony.

In second place in Rise of Skywalker, which is so close to cracking $1 billion worldwide as we close out the weekend. The J.J. Abrams-directed picture brought in $15.1 million domestic from 4,279 locations with a per theater average of $3,519. The movie also earned $24.2 million internationally with 55 markets accounted for over the weekend. This weekend’s earnings take Rise of Skywalker‘s global total to $990 million, which means it could very well crack $1 billion by this time next week. Although it was never going to keep pace with the runaway success of the first Skywalker sequel trilogy installment, 2015’s Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens, Rise of Skywalker has stayed close to mirroring Star Wars: The Last Jedi‘s box office success. However, it remains to be seen whether the movie will be able to hit The Last Jedi‘s $1.3 billion global total by the time it leaves theaters.

Newcomers Like a Boss and Underwater were not met with the same level of success as 1917 this weekend despite landing in the number five and seven slots, respectively. Boisterous comedy Like a Boss, which stars Tiffany Haddish and Rose Byrne as beauty entrepreneurs who take an offer they should have definitely refused from a shady mogul played by Salma Hayek, brought in $10 million domestic. The movie ultimately averaged $3,249 per theater and snagged a B CinemaScore