A brutal weather system named Storm Elliott is taking the fun out of holiday movies at the North American box office.
The bomb cyclone brought freezing temperatures, high winds, snow and ice to large areas of the country. Traditionally, the Christmas corridor is one of the most profitable times of the year for Hollywood studios and theater owners. This year was an exception amid Storm Elliott and ongoing concerns about COVID-19, the flu and the RSV virus.
At the year-end box office, Christmas weekend revenue could be down 57 percent from 2019 — before the pandemic hit — and, more alarmingly, by 40 percent from 2021. (The reason is that Christmas Eve falls on a Saturday and Christmas falls on a Sunday.) Put another way, studios are already looking to next week to make up lost ground.
20th Century and Disney Avatar 2 It remained at No. 1 on Friday with $19.5 million from 4,202 theaters for a domestic total of $217.2 million. The big-budget tentpole is expected to earn a Friday-Monday total of $88 million to $90 million. The James Cameron-directed sequel fell slightly more than expected in its second weekend, as it was strong.
DreamWorks Animation and Universal Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, which opened midweek, with $17.4 million from 4,099 theaters and a six-day opening of $24 million for a projected four-day holiday total at No. No problem coming in 2nd. The family film is tracking for a release in the $30 million to $35 million range.
Tristar’s Whitney Houston: I wanna dance with somebody And Paramount’s Babylon is also facing hard times. Both the films opened on Friday.
I want to dance with someone An estimated $2 million Friday from 3,625 theaters for a projected four-day total of $7 million to $8 million (which Sony insiders believe could climb to $10 million). The Whitney Houston biopic earned a CinemaScore of A from audiences after garnering glowing reviews.
Darren Aronofsky’s Star-Pack Babylon Looks like a huge disappointment if it doesn’t bounce back next week. A movie that moves three hours north – this is it Avatar 2 – opened to $1.5 million from 3,343 theaters on Friday for a projected four-day debut of $5 million.
At the exclusive box office, the whale Expanding to a total of 603 theaters on Christmas. A24 expects the film to earn $1.4 million for the four-day weekend.
Among the new offerings, Sarah Polley has been praised talking women It opened in eight theaters on Friday. The MGM and UAR film, like several other titles, were no doubt affected by the freezing temperatures in key markets like New York.
Numbers will be updated on Sunday.