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Weekend Box Office: Hitman's Bodyguard Smacks Down Annabelle: Creation, Logan Not So Lucky

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By Chris Kavan - 08/20/17 at 06:37 PM CT

Good news for the box office - this August was only the second slowest weekend of the year (by a whole $1 million even)! August has been a very slow month in general - no wonder it's down a whopping 34% compared to last year - and is leading to a down summer, 12.5% behind last year as well. The Hitman's Bodyguard managed to post a bigger-than-expected first place finish, but Logan Lucky didn't have luck on its side is it failed to crack double digits. Meanwhile, quite a few films got over some very big milestones. We'll have to hope that fall and winter provide more fireworks if Hollywood hopes to salvage this year, however.


The reviews weren't exactly through-the-roof for the R-rated comedic pairing of Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson, but audiences didn't seem that concerned. With a $21.6 million debut, The Hitman's Bodyguard may have not broken any records, but at least it was a nice way to end August. The film scored a "B+" average with audiences, which came in a bit more male (52%) and older (70% over 25). Reynolds has proven himself a talent for supporting role material while Jackson, who has often been relegated to smaller supporting roles, unleashed his full R-rated potential for the first time since 2006 and Snakes on a Plane. With a light budget of just $29 million, the film is going to have no problem with earning back its share, though it's looking like this one will probably earn the bulk in domestic totals. It will hit at least $50 million here and anything above that overseas will just be desert.


After opening big last weekend (and apparently enough so that Warner Bros. is touting its own $1 billion "Conjuring Universe" now), Annabelle: Creation fell 55.7% (on par with horror films in general - better than some), earning $15.5 million and giving the film a new total of $64 million. That more than quadruples its $15 million budget and the film is racing towards at least breaking the $75 million mark as it easily has the horror market cornered until It (in all its glory) drops September 8. The Conjuring Universe looks to be in good hands, with The Nun coming in 2018 and plenty more things that go bump in the night planned for years to come. I have to say, if the whole Universal Monsters thing falls flat, at least there is one horror cinematic universe worth checking out.


Despite earning some great reviews from critics, Steven Soderbergh's return to the big screen was muted with a $8.05 million debut for Logan Lucky. Unlike The HItman's Bodyguard, which has been playing to crowds since March, Logan Lucky didn't have a big marketing push and even if critics loved it, audience gave it a "B" Cinemascore, and they're the ones who are paying. The opening represents the lowest opening for Soderbergh since 2002 and Solaris while it is the lowest opening for actor Channing Tatum on any film opening in 1600 plus theaters. Even James Bond himself, Daniel Craig, couldn't stir up that much excitement. All told, Logan Lucky looks like it will be a lot of fun to watch, but it's just not what audiences were in the mood for right now.


In better news, Dunkirk continued its strong run, dipping a light 38.4% in its fifth weekend out, adding $6.7 million to its $165.5 million total. With an additional $227.2 million from the international market, Dunkirk topped the $372.7 million for Batman Begins to become Christopher Nolan's fifth-best worldwide film total. In terms of the summer 2017 season, Dunkirk also topped the likes of Cars 3, Transformers: The Last Knight and War for the Planet of the Apes. It is still on track to hit $200 million (it may need an Oscar bump to get over the last hump), but it will only be a matter of time.


The animated sequel got off to a rough start and it didn't improve much in its second weekend out. Dropping 38.7%, The Nut Job 2 added $5.11 million to its total, which stands at just $17.7 million at this point. That total is still less than the $19.4 million The Nut Job made on its opening weekend and its looking more and more likely that the sequel will quickly fade and about $25 million is the best its going to hope for. On a $40 million budget, it's not looking good, even if it can break out a bit overseas. I'm not holding my breath for a third entry in this series.

Outside the top five: As I said, there were plenty of milestones broken over the weekend, leading that charge is Girls Trip, the female-powered comedy crossed the $100 million mark with a $3.844 million weekend and new $104 million total. It is still trending ahead of Bad Moms (which wound up with $113 million total), so expect this to hit at least $115 million if not more.

Also hitting a major miles, Despicable Me 3 picked up $2.03 million, giving the film a new total of $251.7 million, the tally helped Universal cross the $3 billion mark at the international box office, as well as push Despicable Me 3 to nearly $1 billion worldwide, where it currently sits at $950 million.

Also topping another milestone, Wonder Woman hit the $800 million global mark (ahead of its debut in Japan) once again, director Patty Jenkins is breaking records for films featuring a female director and I'm guessing she'll have a pretty good payoff for the sequel. It is also the third-best total for Warner Bros. behind just The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises.

In the specialty box office, Wind River expanded from 45 to 694 theaters where it jumped 385.9% from 20th to 10th place with a $3.02 million weekend and new $4.1 million total. It seems to be following a similar pattern as The Beguiled, which wound up with $10.5 million in the end.

Next week we close out August with the animated Leap!, the faith-based All Saints and the Bruce Lee biopic, Birth of the Dragon.


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