Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and More in This Week's MPAA Ratings Bulletin

By Chris Kavan - 10/26/22 at 12:30 PM CT

While there have been some films keeping the box office afloat since the summer blockbuster season died down, it has been a rough couple of months. But thanks to Dwayne Johnson's DC passion project Black Adam, the box office is in the best shape since July. And a rom-com counter-programming release also scored big and horror continued to shine as well. As the MPAA bulletin goes, it's not the most impressive of the year but it does contain what looks to be one of the biggest films of the fall season - MCU let's go!

Black Adam may have fallen flat with critics - with a withering 39% from critics - but that didn't stop audiences from showing up in droves and also giving it a much better reaction with a solid "B+"Cinemascore. With $67 million, Black Adam had the biggest opening since Thor: Love and Thunder in July - and helped the box office to an overall $116 million total - also the best weekend since July. That opening is bigger than the likes of Shazam! ($53.5 million) and Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw ($60 million) and just under the opening of Aquaman ($67.9 million). It also represents the best opening for Johnson outside of The Mummer Returns ($68.7 million) and as the main star, it is his best opening to date. While the film did cost a reported $195 million, it also earned $73 million overseas (27% ahead of Shazam!) though its release in China is still up in the air. With $140 million thus far and a good audience reaction, Black Adam should be able to hold up until the next Black Panther drops on the 11th next month.

While Black Adam may have made the biggest headlines, the George Clooney/Julia Roberts re-team rom-com Ticket to Paradise proved a great counter, opening to $16.5 million. Again, critics were a bit down on this - with just 55% on Rotten Tomatoes, but audiences were much happier with the results for an "A-" Cinemascore. No surprise that 64% of said audience was 35 or older but it is nice to see not just older audiences coming out, but also a romantic comedy succeeding. Ticket to Paradise has already proven a big hit overseas where it opened much earlier with a over $80 million total. The reported $60 million film already has a global total nearing $100 million and thus anything it adds on the domestic front going forward will just make it all that much more profitable.

In third place the horror sensation Smile dipped just under 33% to bring in $8.47 million for a new $84.4 million total. By next weekend it will top Black Phone's $89.88 million to become the year's biggest horror title. It has also brought in over $82 million overseas for a global total near $168 million.

In fourth place, Halloween Ends cratered by dropping 80% - one of the biggest second-week drops of all time - and falling behind Smile (in its fourth week, by the way) with a $8 million weekend and a new $54.1 million total. Luckily the film has a reported budget of just $30 million and has over $82 million global, so it will be just fine though I'm sure the studio was hoping for something more substantial.

Rounding out the top five, family-friendly Lyle, Lyle Crocodile had another decent hold with a 42.2% dip and a $4.25 million weekend. The $28.76 million total, however, is still just over half of its reported $50 million budget. It is doing well overseas, though it has still only opened in a handful of market with $8.4 million so far. If it can continue to find decent reception overseas, it may just slide into the black.

Outside the top five: Gaining much notoriety and buzz, the gory horror film Terrifier 2 added 55 theaters to its count and jumped 70.4% from last weekend to wind up in 7th place with $1.75 million and a new $5.11 million total. We'll see if the excitement can propel this over $10 million total as Halloween is just around the corner.

In limited release, Martin McDonagh’s The Banshees of Inisherin score the year's second-best per-theater average when it opened in four theaters with $184,454 and a mighty $46,113 per-theater average. This one is poised to expand and we'll see how it fares with general audiences soon enough.

This weekend will see yet another horror offering in Prey for the Devil as well as the biopic TÁR, which has garnered some of the best praise in the long career of Cate Blanchett.

MPAA Official Logo

One of the most anticipated films for the rest of the year is Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Following the death of Chadwick Boseman, who portrayed T'Challa/Black Panther, there was a lot of concern about how the franchise was going to move forward. But if the trailers are any indication, director Ryan Coogler has found a way to both honor the late actor as well as driving the MCU into a more powerful future. Much of the rest of the original cast returns including Angela Bassett, Danai Gurira, Lupita Nyong'o, Letitia Wright, Martin Freeman and Winston Duke. Two new arrivals include Tenoch Huerta as Namor - the new antagonist as well as Dominique Thorne as Riri Williams aka Ironheart, child prodigy and a new Iron Lady if you will, who will don her own suit and join the fight. While there has been much speculation over who is going to take over the mantel of Black Panther, most seem to think Wright's Shuri will be tapped. Wright herself has been the focus of some issues on set but it seems most has been smoothed over. Namor is also technically the first mutant in the MCU (at least on the big screen) and we'll see if this finally opens to the door to the long-awaited return of the X-Men or at least some mention of them - into the MCU. Regardless, Wakanda Forever certainly looks like it will be a great addition to the MCU and follow in the footsteps of the first entry. Rated PG-13 for sequences of strong violence, action and some language.

Sadly, that's all your going to get this week but you can check out the full MPAA Ratings Bulletin below:

BLACK PANTHER: WAKANDA FOREVER

Rated PG-13 for sequences of strong violence, action and some language.


THE DEVIL CONSPIRACY

Rated R for strong violent content, some gore and language.


THE LAST OF THE WINTHROPS

Rated PG for thematic material, brief language and smoking.


NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM: KAHMUNRAH RISES AGAIN

Rated PG for action/peril and some mild rude humor.


RETROGRADE

Rated R for some language.


SPACE PUPS

Rated G


SR.

Rated R for language and some drug use.

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