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Weekend Box Office: Boo 2 Another Tyler Perry Hit as Rest of Newcomers Struggle

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By Chris Kavan - 10/22/17 at 05:54 PM CT

It was a pretty dismal weekend at the box office as, aside from Boo 2! every other major wide release suffered from disastrous numbers. After a strong September (where It reigned supreme), none of the October offerings have managed to match it. This weekend was off $30 million compared to last year, and October thus far is lagging 13% behind 2016. Unless Halloween can scare up some big numbers (and I wouldn't count on it), the month will continue the downward trend and we have to hope some big late-autumn and early winter hits can help right the ship.

1) BOO 2! A MADEA HALLOWEEN

With a decent $21.65 million opening, Boo 2! became Tyler Perry's seventh Madea film to top the $20 million opening mark. While that opening is on the low end for the Madea franchise, for Perry films as a whole it falls in the middle of the scale. While that total is about $7 million behind the original Madea Halloween, audiences still awarded the film a strong "A-" Cinemascore (just behind the original film as well, which received a solid "A"). Critics, of course, savaged the film, but that's par for the course for most of Perry's work, which usually makes money because his brand always draws a fervent audience. If the film follows a similar path to other Madea films, it should wind up north of $50 million. The price tag on this is a little higher than a typical Madea film ($25 million), so it may need a little more help, perhaps the home viewing market, to make it to the black. Still, at $838 million domestic and counting, by next year (with two additional films coming out), Perry could be a billion-dollar man.

2) GEOSTORM

I guess Geostrom was taking its disaster angle a little too seriously, as the second-place opening of $13.3 million is certainly a catastrophic result for the $120 million film. For such a blockbuster budget, it was telling that Geostrom didn't screen for critics and no surprise that when they did watch it, resulted in a terrible 13% on Rotten Tomatoes. Audiences weren't much kinder, awarding the film a "B-" Cinemascore. That audience was 56% with 77% coming in over the age of 25. The film added $36.4 million after opening in select international markets last weekend, with a total worldwide total of $68 million. If it has any chance of making back its money, it has to hope for a strong overseas showing. I don't hold out much hope, even with China on the way, but never count any movie out. Still, this is the third whiff for Warner Bros. following the underperformance of both Blade Runner 2049 and the LEGO Ninjago Movie. I doubt it will hurt them too much, but goes to show even the biggest studios can falter from time to time.

3) HAPPY DEATH DAY

The horror version of Groundhog Day had a bigger-than-expected second week drop after a strong opening. Happy Death Day took a 64% hit and fell to third with $9.3 million. That gives the film a new total of $40.68 million. The film will top the $50 million mark with little trouble, but where it goes from there depends on whether Halloween audiences give it a shot over Jigsaw. While it has little in the way of overseas help thus far, it's low $5 million budget means it is going to be a money-maker and just goes to prove once again that low-budget horror films are still some of the best returns on investment that studios can get.

4) BLADE RUNNER 2049

For the second weekend in a row, the beleaguered Blade Runner 2049 fell over 50%. Dipping 54% in total, the film brought in $7.15 million for a new total of just over $74 million. I mean, for 2 hour plus, R-rated sci-fi film, it's not going to get much better than that, but on a budget of $150 million, it's just not going to cut it. The film has earned $120.1 million overseas for a worldwide total of $195 million. It opens next weekend in China (ironically, up against Geostorm - two WB movies that will need China's help to become profitable), and that market will go a long way to determining whether the film is going to be a major failure or a minor hit. Granted, even if it makes all the money in China, domestically this one is going to be another cult sci-fi film and nothing more.

5) ONLY THE BRAVE

The only new movie that was a hit with critics (90% on Rotten Tomatoes) and audiences (the filmed earned an "A" Cinemascore), just couldn't drum up that much business regardless of the good will. With just $6.01 million, the $38 million production is going to struggle to even reach that mark. Much like Deepwater Horizon and Patriots Day, it seems audiences have had their fill of real-life dramas. As it stands, this one will be lucky to make it across the $25 million mark and I think studios are going to scale back on true stories for awhile.

Outside the top five: Another films savaged by critics, thriller The Snowman opened outside the top five in 8th place with a mere $3.44 million. Even the film's director, Tomas Alfredson, has gone on record saying the film could have been much better, given how much he had to cut out. With a dismal 9% on Rotten Tomatoes, audiences whole-heartedly agreed, with an equally dismal "D" Cinemascore. The $35 million film has earned $19 million overseas, but I don't even think that is going to help this one be profitable. Maybe this should have gone VOD - just sayin'.

The last wide release belongs to the inspirational Same Kind of Different as Me and, as with the other recent faith-based films, it utterly fell flat, earning just $2.56 million (12th place). The film had a decent opening day, but that was apparently pumped up by the faithful, and their group buying, as it suffered the 12-biggest Friday to Saturday drop at 47%. Like the films before it, this is going to be a largely forgotten film, save for its core audience, who I kind of feel sorry about having to sit through all these duds.

The only milestone reached this week was the low bar of $25 million, which The Mountain Between Us crossed with $2.75 million (11th place) and a new total of $25.5 million. Considering the $35 million budget on this one, I don't think a celebration is in order.

Next week October dials it back a little with only three new wide release offerings, Jigsaw, the eight film in the Saw franchise (and first since The Final Chapter in 2010), the dark comedy from George Clooney, Suburbicon and patriotic-leaning Thank You for Your Service.

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