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Weekend Box Office: A Quiet Place Makes Some Noise, Ready Player One Holds Second, Blockers Third

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By Chris Kavan - 04/08/18 at 07:45 PM CT

It was a great weekend for genre films. A Quiet Place provided one of the best openings for a horror film and Blockers proved that comedy is still a strong draw. Black Panther continued its blazing path to glory while Ready Player One was a second-week winner, here and abroad. The limited box office likewise enjoyed a great debut from You Were Never Really Here while Wes Anderson's Isle of Dogs broke into the top 10 ahead of its nationwide debut. Overall - good news all around.


Heading into the weekend, the buzz surrounding A Quiet Place had been growing ever since a dynamite debut at the SXSW film festival. John Krasinski's (director, writer, producer and actor) film drew nearly unanimous critical praise (97% on Rotten Tomatoes) and that sentiment was reflecting in audiences, who flocked to the horror film to the tune of $50 million. That is the second-best three-day opening of the year, topping Ready Player One and coming in behind only Black Panther. It is also the second-best three day opening for an original horror film after just The Village ($50.7 - we'll see if Monday actuals bump that up or not). It's also good news for Paramount, becoming one of the studio's best openings since Star Trek Beyond in 2016. Audiences awarded the film a "B+" Cinemascore with it nearly evenly split between men and women with 63% coming in over the age of 25. In terms of raw horror, A Quiet Place is still among the best, topping the opening for all The Conjuring films, all the Insidious films and nearly all the Paranormal Activity films (the third entry opened to $52.5 million). If it follows a similar pattern to Split or The Conjuring, a total of $150 is all but guaranteed with a good shot to hit the mark set by Get Out last year ($175 million). Time will tell, but this is shaping up to be a horror hit, not so quietly.


While many were predicting both A Quiet Place and Blocker topping Steven Spielberg's Easter Egg-laden nerdstravaganza, Ready Player One held strong, dipping just 40% from its opening weekend and delivering a $25 million performance, raising its total to $97 million. Word-of-mouth has been strong for this, and the 63% increase from Friday to Saturday shows that the younger crowd has firmly embraced it. But the bigger story is overseas, where China has contributed a whopping $163 million to its global total of $391 million worldwide. That makes it the second-highest grossing film of the year (worldwide) behind Black Panther. It also makes it Spielberg's best-performing film since Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull back in 2008, as well as topping the likes of Edge of Tomorrow ($370 million) and Mad Max: Fury Road ($377 million) on the global stage. With continued support and even with Rampage on the way, a $150 million domestic total is not out of the question, with $500 million worldwide also likely.


The R-rated comedy following a group of parents looking to stop their daughter's prom night sexcapades had an equally impressive debut, with a $21.43 million opening. Could Blockers become this generation's American Pie? It opened better than Game Night earlier in the year - which went on to gross over $70 million. Audiences gave the film a "B" - somewhat middling, but comedies (like horror) tend to play a bit harsher with audiences than other genre films. Critics were happy as well, with an 82% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The film is a great mix of talent with Leslie Mann, John Cena and Ike Barinholtz playing the parents while Geraldine Viswanathan, Kathryn Newton and Gideon Adlon take on the role of their daughters. The film does just about everything right and may be the next, big generational classic raunchy, fun comedy - hence the American Pie comparison. We'll see how it holds up, but $50 million is in the bag - anything beyond that is gravy.


Marvel's new gold standard continued to climb up the charts, bringing in $8.43 million (down just 26.6%) and raising its total to $665.35 million. That means Black Panther officially topped Titanic ($659.36 million) to become the third-highest grossing domestic film of all time behind only Avatar and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. It added $4.5 million overseas and sits a fraction behind the $1.3 billion mark - 10th on the list of highest-grossing global films and it has a good chance of catching up to Star Wars: The Last Jedi ($1.33 billion). The only downside to Black Panther? If Infinity War doesn't match (or exceed) the film - will that be considered a letdown? No matter, Marvel and Disney are set for a record-breaking run this year and Black Panther is the tip of the spear.


The faith-based film had another superb hold (down just 20.2%) and added $8.35 million to its total, which now stands at just over $69 million. That means it has topped War Room ($67 million) to become the second-highest grossing pure faith film (not counting Passion of the Christ or Narnia films) behind just Heaven is For Real ($91 million) and given the continued support for the film, it has a chance to eventually top that film as well. In fact, as long as it can hold onto theaters, there is a better-than-average chance I Can Only Imagine will be able to top $100 million, setting a new high mark for this genre. While I often harp on faith-based films for being too preachy, I would much rather this film be on top than films like God's Not Dead and their ilk. Inspirational and uplifting without being condescending and delivering a message with all the subtlety of a sledgehammer - more faith-based films need to take notice.

Outside the top five: Performing better than expected, but not quite able to break into the top five, the fact-based Chappaquiddick opened with $6.2 million (seventh place). The film follows Ted Kennedy (Jason Clarke) and the car accident that claimed the life of campaign strategist Mary Jo Kopechne (Kate Mara) and had far-reaching consequences for a political dynasty and the politics of America. While adults have plenty to choose from, it's nice to see there is still room for quality. The film earned a "B" Cinemascore with those over 55 awarding it the best scores.

Speaking of inspirational films, sport drama The Miracle Season opened with $4.13 million (11th place), drawing an "A" Cinemascore itself. With mixed reviews and pretty much no advertising campaign, and despite opening outside the top 10, that result is actually pretty good.

Breaking into the top 10, Wes Anderson's Isle of Dogs continued its expansion, adding 389 theaters, jumping 56.3% in the process for a 10th-place finish of $4.6 million and a new $12 million total. The film goes wide next weekend.

In limited release, the big winner was You Were Never Really Here, the dark Joaquin Phoenix film opened to $$129,911 from just three theaters for a nice $43,304 per-theater average.

Next week Dwayne Johnson will hope Rampage can do just that, while Truth or Dare brings us another horror film, Borg vs McEnroe and Beirut give us real-world drama and Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero is an family-friendly animated war film (or something like that).


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