‘Halloween Kills’ Has Fantastic Opening At The Box Office, While ‘The Last Duel’ Falls Hard

Some good and bad news to report from this past weekend’s box office. Let’s start with the good.

Halloween Kills‘ had a pretty fantastic opening with a cool $50.4 million over its debut weekend. That’s a super impressive number, especially when you remember it’s currently available to stream on Peacock. So people have the option to watch this at home, but they’re choosing to hit up the local cinema.

Most experts predicted the movie would bring in around $35 or $40 million, so yeah, you can bet the studio is celebrating this $50 million haul.

The opening for the film — which sees masked killer Michael Myers once again dice up the residents of Haddonfield, Illinois — is a steep drop compared to its predecessor, which opened to $76 million in 2018. However, 2018 and 2021 are very different landscapes for the theater industry considering there’s a pandemic going on and streaming is a mightier force than it was just a few years ago.

Now what about the bad news? Well, ‘The Last Duel‘ starring Adam Driver, Jodie Comer, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon stumbled hard during its opening weekend.

The drama, which is set in 14th century France, bombed, grossing a pallid $4.8 million. That’s a disastrous result given that the film cost north of $100 million to make, as well as a sign that older audiences remain skittish about returning to theaters when COVID and its variants are still circulating. More than half of the audience for ‘The Last Duel’ was comprised of ticket buyers over the age of 35.

That seems to be the trend here. Surprisingly, it’s the younger audience supporting theaters right now, which you may not expect at first, given they consume everything online now.

But they are also eager to get out, hang with friends and fear the virus less, so if you think about it, the numbers make sense.

Hopefully younger people continue to hit up the movies, even after the pandemic ends.

‘Halloween Kills’ Has Very Nice $4.9 Million Thursday Night Preview, How Much Could It Make This Weekend?

The latest installment in the ‘Halloween’ film franchise is being released inside theaters this week. Jamie Lee Curtis has returned once again for ‘Halloween Kills’

The movie had its Thursday night preview and it brought in a pretty nice $4.9 million. The 2018 ‘Halloween‘ sequel made $7.7 million in its preview night, but that was pre-pandemic and there was more hype surrounding that film. It actually ended up being the best opening and highest grossing film in the entire franchise with a $255 million global total.

So how much might ‘Halloween Kills’ make this weekend? Well, most experts say it should reach the $30 million mark, and possibly even the $35 to $40 million mark. It’ll be interesting to see if it actually hits that number because it’s also available to stream for paid users on NBC’s streaming service.

Typically, the films that have these hybrid releases don’t perform as well inside theaters, but since Peacock is not exactly the most well known streaming service, maybe it won’t impact its theater haul as much.

Halloween Kills follows Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) after she learns that Myers did not die in the fiery inferno she cooked up at the end of the last movie. Laurie rallies her daughter Karen (Judy Greer), granddaughter Allyson (Andi Matichak) and the town of Haddonfield to rise up against Michael Myers as he prepares for his umpteenth blood-letting.

There’s a sequel scheduled for October 14, 2022, so don’t expect Michael to die in this flick. That will likely come next year in the appropriately titled Halloween Ends.

‘No Time To Die’ Opens Below Box Office Expectations… But Not By Much!

Well, the latest James Bond flick ‘No Time To Die‘ was finally released after seeing multiple delays thanks to COVID-19.

The movie, which has been performing well with critics, opened this past weekend in thousands of cinemas across the country. It brought in $56 million during the weekend, which was just a little below the $60 million predictions.

But thanks to the Indigenous Peoples’ Day holiday, it will end up making around $62 million if you count this as a three-day weekend.

It’s certainly not a bad number, but when you remember the film cost $250 million to make and another $100 million to promote, it doesn’t sound as good. That being said, the flick is doing big numbers internationally. It has a global total of around $310 million.

Despite opening slightly behind expectations, ‘No Time to Die’ marks a positive step forward for the movie theater business, which has struggled to rebound from the pandemic. With Bond’s assist, the overall box office collected $108 million between Friday and Sunday, according to Comscore, marking only the fourth weekend in the past 18 months to cross the $100 million benchmark.

And that’s what we reported last week. The box office in general is looking healthier. You have more films making a decent amount of money, and that should only continue during the upcoming holiday season.

That being said, the fact that No Time to Die didn’t blow past the predictions is a sign that the older audience is still a little hesitant to return to crowded theaters.

No Time to Die sold more tickets to moviegoers over 45 than any other pandemic-era movie, with 36% of ticket buyers over the age of 45 and 57% over 35. Yet the reality is that older audiences have been the most concerned about new variants of COVID-19 and, as a result, haven’t been as tempted to go to their local multiplex.

We’ll see what happens as the year ends, but I think theaters should be breathing a sigh of relief.

‘No Time To Die’ Has Best Thursday Night Preview In Franchise History

It’s looking like it’s going to be a real good weekend for MGM’s James Bond flick ‘No Time To Die’

The film had its Thursday night preview at the box office last night, and it managed to take home $6.3 million, which is the best preview for a Bond film in franchise history. Spectre brought in $5.25 million, Skyfall had $4.6 million and Quantum of Solace had $2.5 million.

While No Time to Die‘s number is lower than last Thursday’s $11.6M charted by Venom: Let There Be Carnage (the second-best preview night during the pandemic after Black Widow‘s $13.2M), note that Venom skewed more broadly with Hispanic and Latino audiences and younger. Bond is dependent on older adult audiences, and should they show up this weekend, the pic will over-index. 

Most experts are predicting a weekend total of around $60 million, but it’s possible it could reach the $70 million mark, especially if the Thursday night preview is an accurate representation of the thirst.

It’s possible by Monday, this movie will have already made over $300 million at the global box office, which would certainly be a huge win for the franchise.

Unlike Venom, No Time to Die has received strong reviews from critics, so it’s possible positive word of mouth gives this movie a boost as well.

This is all good news for theaters. It looks like the box office is slowly getting back to normal. If the trend continues, there could be some huge totals come November/December when even bigger movies are released.

‘Venom: Let There Be Carnage’ Grabs Box Office Record With Impressive $90 Million Debut

Going into the weekend, experts were predicting the Venom sequel, Let There Be Carnage, would take home around $60 or $70 million during its opening weekend. This coming after a strong $11 million Thursday night preview.

Well, the experts were off by $20 million. The Sony Pictures flick earned just over $90 million in its debut, setting a new pandemic record. Even more interesting, this $90 million debut is $10 million more than the original Venom earned back in 2018 when it opened to $80 million.

Before Venom 2 came along, the pandemic box office title was held by Black Widow, which opened to $80 million back in July.

So yeah, this is a huge win for theaters. It’s the shot in the arm they needed. In fact, this past weekend at the box office was basically a normal weekend for theaters. Not only did Venom perform well, but Addams Family 2 brought in $18 million, which was more than the experts predicted.

The ‘toon unspooled in 4,207 theaters and earned a solid $4,280 per-screen average. Although reviewers savaged the film with a 27% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, ticket-buyers gave it a more generous ‘B’ grade from CinemaScore. It has not opened internationally yet.

Meanwhile, Shang-Chi made another $6 million, bringing its domestic total north of $200 million.

And theaters should have another grand time this coming weekend when the latest James Bond flick, No Time To Die, is released. It premiered internationally this past weekend and made nearly $120 million.

‘Venom: Let There Be Carnage’ Has Fantastic $11.6 Million Thursday Night Preview

Marvel/Disney’s ‘Shang-Chi’ film has been at the top of the box office for several weeks now, but that’ll change this weekend as ‘Venom: Let There Be Carnage‘ rolls out across thousands of cinemas across the country.

The Sony Pictures flick had an impressive $11.6 million Thursday night preview. It’s the second best preview number we’ve seen during the pandemic. ‘Black Widow’ still holds the best Thursday night haul with $13.2 million.

Back in 2018, the first ‘Venom’ film made just $10 million on Thursday night, and it went on to make $80 million during its opening weekend. Experts don’t believe this sequel will reach the $80 million mark in its opening weekend, but some believe it could touch $60 or $70 million.

The follow-up to 2018’s ‘Venom’ is directed by Andy Serkis and stars Tom Hardy as an Eddie Brock, an investigative journalist whose encounter with a symbiote turns him into a modern-day Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, albeit with much sharper teeth.

Overall, it should be a decent weekend at the box office, between Venom 2, The Addams Family 2 and The Sopranos prequel film, Many Saints of Newark.

Not a lot of originality in the films listed above, but at least they’ll bring some money to the box office. That’s really all that matters at this point as theaters try to stay in business.

Disney’s Shang-Chi Tops Box Office Once Again, Clint Eastwood’s ‘Cry Macho’ Fumbles

Well, Disney’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of Ten Rings continues to impress at the box office. In its third weekend of release, the Marvel superhero adventure film brought in another $21 million.

That’s only a 39% decline from its previous weekend. In total, the film has made nearly $180 million at the domestic box office. It’s made over $300 million globally, so it’s already earned its budget back and more.

The same can’t be said for Clint Eastwood’s latest film, Cry Macho, which brought in just $4.5 million from nearly 4,000 screens across the country. It was made on a budget of $33 million + marketing costs, so they still have a ways to go before they can make any sort of profit.

I mean, to put this in perspective, Cry Macho came in third this weekend in its debut weekend, losing the second place title to Free Guy, which has been in theaters for over a month now. Free Guy made $5.2 this past weekend bringing its global total to $298 million.

So what hurt Cry Macho? Well, the reviews were mixed, at best, and the younger audience just doesn’t care about Eastwood. 89% of Cry Macho ticket buyers were over the age of 35, which just isn’t gonna cut it, especially right now. You need that younger audience.

At 91-years-old, Eastwood isn’t exactly connected to the young folks. The failure at the box office should not be a surprise, and honestly, I don’t think COVID-19 is to blame. Sure, it can take a little of the blame, but I don’t think this film would have brought in great numbers regardless.

Next weekend, Dear Evan Hansen and The Eyes of Tammy Faye try to take out Shang-Chi.

MAJOR BOX OFFICE SUCCESS! Marvel’s Shang-Chi Lands Labor Day Weekend Record With Ease

I haven’t always been the biggest fan of superhero movies, but you can’t deny the fact that they bring people to the cinema. Marvel might be the thing that helps theaters survive this last wave of the pandemic.

The studio’s latest release, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, had a theatrical-only release this past weekend, and it did some pretty insane numbers.

It made $94 million in its first four days of release setting a new high mark for the Labor Day weekend. The previous record for the holiday weekend was just a little over $30 million for the 2007 version of Halloween.

Shang-Chi’s three-day total was $75.5 million, which means it was the second-biggest traditional opening weekend of the pandemic, behind Black Widow’s $80 million debut.

At the international box office, ‘Shang-Chi’ amassed $56.2 million in key markets such as France, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and Japan. The film doesn’t have a release date in China, which is an important territory for Marvel movies. Globally, ‘Shang-Chi’ has made $146.2 million so far.

This is outstanding news. As we reported last week, predictions had Shang-Chi closer to the $50 million mark. I even questioned whether it’d hit $45 million.

So yeah, this is very good news for theaters because it might just convince big studios that a theatrical-only release is the way to go, as opposed to the hybrid streaming release strategy.

Last weekend’s champ, Universal’s thriller ‘Candyman,’ slid to second place, collecting $10.5 million over the weekend and an impressive $13 million through Monday. The horror film, which is playing only in theaters, has made $41 million to date, a strong result given its $25 million production budget.

Marvel’s ‘Shang-Chi’ Makes $8.8 Million In Thursday Night Previews, What Does This Mean For The Weekend?

All eyes are on the Disney/Marvel flick, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, this weekend as theaters hope it brings people out in droves. It’s the first big superhero film to have an exclusive theater release since the pandemic.

During its Thursday night preview, it made a decent $8.8 million. That’s over $1 million more than F9 made back in June.

Some people have criticized Disney for releasing this film over Labor Day weekend, which is typically a slow time at the box office, but in these weird times, you try everything and hope something sticks.

Experts believe Shang-Chi could make around $45 million this weekend, which would be a super impressive number. If it reached that number, it would break the record for highest-earning film over a Labor Day weekend. That record is currently held by the 2007 ‘Halloween‘ film which earned around $30 million.

So perhaps this is why Disney chose this date. Maybe they’re hoping to turn some positive press by owning a weekend no studios typically care to own.

We’ll see how it plays out for them. I’m not entirely confident this film gets to $45 million, but I do think it’ll make over $30 million.

It’s worth noting the film is getting rave reviews from critics. It currently sits at a 92% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Nia DaCosta’s ‘Candyman’ Has Strong Opening At Box Office With $22 Million Debut

After some annoying delays because of COVID-19, Nia DaCosta and Jordan Peele’s ‘Candyman‘ horror flick was finally released this past weekend.

The movie, which was co-written by Peele and directed by DaCosta, received glowing reviews from critics, which helped its performance at the box office.

It made just over $22 million from around 3,500 theaters across the country. Most experts believed it would take home $15 million during its opening weekend, so it did about $7 million over projections, which is obviously a good thing.

Additionally, it made around $5 million overseas, bringing its total up to $27 million. It was made on a budget of $25 million. Even when you factor in marketing, it looks like Candyman may be one of the rare films making a profit in these pandemic times.

And while this is a small win for cinemas, they’re still struggling with the numbers…

In recent weeks, new releases like ‘Candyman,’ the Ryan Reynolds-led ‘Free Guy,’ and Paramount’s animated adventure ‘PAW Patrol’ sold more movie tickets than expected, yet the overall box office is pacing roughly 50% behind the same period in 2019. Cinema operators are eager to show Marvel’s ‘Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,’ which opens next weekend and marks the first theatrical-only MCU release in more than two years.

Personally, I think they’re setting themselves up for a disappointment with the Ten Rings. I think everyone expects it to do big numbers simply because it has Marvel attached, but I don’t know. I’m not sure if people are hyped enough, unfortunately.

That being said, it had its world premiere recently and the reviews were great, so perhaps word-of-mouth will put some energy behind it.

We’ll see what the numbers look like this coming weekend.