Sunday, August 16, 2015

Straight Outta Compton Has An "Appetite For Destruction"...And Box Office Glory!w

27 years to the month after N.W.A. released the album Straight Outta Compton, the biopic of the band with the same name as that aforementioned album debuted to fantastic numbers at the box office. Grossing the second largest opening weekend for a live-action film since Jurassic World, Straight Outta Compton made $56.1 million for the weekend, which is the sixth biggest August opening weekend of all-time and the eighth biggest R-rated opening weekend of all-time. Oh, and did I mention that Compton doubled its $28 million budget in a single weekend?

Chalk up this extraordinary opening to a great marketing effort from Universal Pictures and the strong following the bands music has all these years later. The films mildly frontloaded nature (it dropped 20% from Friday to Saturday) shouldn't be too worrisome in terms of long term box office prospects given the lucrative Labor Day holiday in the near future. Here's yet another win for Universal Pictures, which over the weekend crossed $2 billion in domestic box office revenue for 2015, only the second time in history a studio has made that cash in a year (Warner Bros. previously accomplished this feat in 2009). With huge box office titles like Jurassic World, Minions, Pitch Perfect 2, Fifty Shades of Grey and Furious 7, it's no shocker Universal has made so much cash in the year thus far, and with titles like Everest, Steve Jobs and Sisters in the future, they should continue to make gobs of money in 2015.

Coming in at second place was Mission: Impossible- Rogue Nation, which lost only 40% from last weekend for a great $17 million third weekend. Ethan Hunts newest adventure has now grossed $138 million and is nowhere near stopping now, especially with no other major action films on the horizon. Don't be shocked if this one crosses $180 million before the end of its run, a monumental achievement for a the newest entry in this 19 year old franchise that's still going strong.

The Man From U.N.C.L.E.  was hoping to grab some of box office glory of its own this weekend, but the Guy Ritchie motion picture failed to capture the sort of box office success that the directors Sherlock Holmes films managed to achieve. The movie grossed only $13.5 million over the weekend, way below even the most modest financial expectations most people had for the film. Warner Bros. did put together a distinctive marketing campaign for this one, but the two lead actors (Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer) aren't huge draws in and of themselves and none of the action and humor in the ads seemed to click. The film will probably make just over $40 million over the end of its run, but given the mixed word-of-mouth it received, that could be a best-case-scenario.

Fantastic Four couldn't save any face in its second weekend, coming in at fourth place and collapsing 68% from its opening weekend for a pitiful $8 million haul. The film has now made only $42.2 million and will likely struggle to get past $60 or even $55 million in its domestic box office run. On the other hand, coming in at fifth place, The Gift actually had a pretty solid hold this go-around, losing 45% for a $6.5 million second weekend for a $23.6 million total so far. That 45% dip is much smaller than the second weekend holds for other Blumhouse motion pictures.

Similar to The Gift, Ant-Man also held well this frame, losing only 30% for a $5.5 million fifth weekend. So far, the Marvel title has grossed $157.6 million so far and, if it continues to hold well for the rest of August, it looks like the film has a shot at outgrossing fellow mid-July MCU feature Captain America: The First Avenger. In seventh place, Vacation puttered along on its middling box office road for a $5.3 million weekend, giving it a current lifetime gross of $46.9 million. Sometime in the next week, the film will surpass the (unadjusted for inflation) lifetime gross of European Vacation.

Those Minions continued their mischief this weekend, coming in at eighth place in their sixth weekend and gross $5.2 million for a current gross of $313 million. Despite adding 461 theaters, Ricki And The Flash didn't rock the house, instead losing 31% for a $4.6 million second weekend. that's not a bad hold by any stretch of the imagination, but it's a bit disappointing it couldn't hold better given its notable theater expansion. Closing out the top 10 was Trainwreck, which grossed $3.8 million this weekend and is just days away from crossing $100 million.

In limited release, Mistress America opened to decent results, grossing $100,000 at four locations. That's a smaller opening than Noah Baumbachs other 2015 movie, While We're Young, by a considerable margin, though that one had bigger actors in it.

Overall, the top 12 for this weekend grossed $132 million, which is up 3% from last year when Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were number one for the second weekend in a row.

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