Weekend Box Office Report: ‘Doctor Strange’ Conjures a Magical First Weekend
Like any new Marvel Studios movie, Doctor Strange was destined to take the number one spot at the box office — it was really just a question of how much it would make. Ultimately, Benedict Cumberbatch’s Sorcerer Supreme surpassed expectations, topping the charts with an exceptional $84 million. But this was a strong weekend in general, with Trolls and Hacksaw Ridge performing well in second and third place.
|4||Boo! A Madea Halloween||$7,800,000 (-54.7)||$3,491||$64,990,000|
|6||The Accountant||$5,950,000 (-29.8)||$2,214||$70,858,000|
|7||Jack Reacher: Never Go Back||$5,580,000 (-42.1)||$1,812||$49,240,000|
|8||Ouija: Origin of Evil||$3,983,000 (-44.0)||$1,674||$31,372,000|
|9||The Girl on the Train||$2,775,000 (-36.7)||$1,765||$70,732,000|
|10||Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children||$2,100,000 (-48.4)||$1,228||$83,334,000|
That $84 million opening for Doctor Strange shouldn’t be compared to the likes of Captain America: Civil War, which opened to a staggering $179 million earlier this year. Rather, it should be placed alongside Marvel’s more offbeat movies featuring lesser-known characters. It blew past Ant-Man, which opened with $57 million, but was edged out by Guardians of the Galaxy, which opened with $94 million. Both of those films were big hits in the end, but Guardians was a true juggernaut. Expect Doctor Strange to fall somewhere between the two of them if word of mouth remains strong (and regular people seem to like the movie as much as the critics did). As is always the case with movies of this size, next weekend will be a strong indicator if we’re looking at a $200 million domestic gross or a $300 million one.
In second place, Trolls opened with a strong $45 million. While other animated movies have opened bigger this year, that’s more than double the $21 million opening weekend of Storks, its most recent competition for the family dollar. Trolls isn’t going to do anything close to Finding Dory or Minions business, but it should do just fine in the long run, especially since kids’ movies tend to stick around in theaters longer than your average blockbuster.
Mel Gibson’s Hacksaw Ridge opened in third place with $14 million, a pretty good number that could balloon if the film snags the right audience, namely slightly older crowds. This one will live or die on the same crowds that have made The Accountant and The Girl On the Train into sleeper hits. After all, both of those films broke $70 million this weekend despite somewhat modest opening weekends (and modest budgets).
Unfortunately, other movies intended for those same audiences continued to stall out this weekend. Jack Reacher: Never Go Back never recovered from simply not being nearly as good as the first movie, which opened to similar numbers but stuck around long enough to be a hit. It should cross $60 million before stalling out. However, it’s faring far better than Inferno, which dropped a devastating 57%, grossing only $6 million in its opening weekend for a $26 million total. This movie was dead-on-arrival and this weekend just kicked the corpse.
Meanwhile, the more seasonal fare started to slow down. In fourth place, Boo! A Madea Halloween made $7 million for a $64 million total and it will probably top out around $80 million or so. In eighth place, Ouija: Origin of Evil grossed just under $4 million for a $31 million gross. Both films are inexpensive, already profitable, and did what they were meant to do in October. They can retire with dignity.