By Chris Kavan - 03/08/23 at 08:02 PM CT
Creed III delivered a knockout at the box office - not just coming in first, but setting record for the franchise (even including the Rocky films). That came at the expense of Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, which took another big drop. Anime title Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba - To the Swordsmith Village landed in the top five while Guy Ritchie's Operation Fortune: Ruse de guerre was a total failure despite a fun premise and stacked cast. On the MPAA side of things, we get some high-fantasy action along with an aged archeologist on one last adventure.
Over the weekend Creed III, featuring the return of Michael B. Jordan as the titular character - as well as his first directing credit - was a knockout at the box office, scoring a $58.3 million opening. Not only was this the biggest opening for the Creed films, it was the biggest opening of any Rocky film. Like John Wick, each Creed film has done better than the one before it - Creed opened to $29.6 million, Creed II upped it to $35.5 million and now here we stand. Better is that critics were happy, awarding in an 88% Fresh with audiences also on board with a solid "A-" Cinemascore. Even with Scream VI and Shazam! Fury of the Gods on the way, Creed III should make a good run throughout March - and with an increased budget of $75 million, it should also have no problem turning a profit. With $41 million international, it has already topped $100 million worldwide as well.
In second place, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania took another big hit, dropping another 60% for a $12.8 million weekend and a new $187.1 million domestic total. While that was enough to top the original Ant-Man's $185 million total - and it's still running ahead of Ant-Man and the Wasp and Shang-Chi - but that could easily change. Given its current trajectory, a finish in the $220-$230 million range is likely - around the same range as Shang-Chi ($224 million) and the first Doctor Strange ($232 million) but certainly on the lower end of the MCU as a whole - if it can manage that. With $265 million overseas, it sits at over $450 million worldwide but may struggle to make much of a profit in the end.
In third place, crazy action comedy Cocaine Bear dipped 52.1% to bring in $11.13 million, giving the Elizabeth Banks' film a new $41.4 million domestic total. It has a smaller $10.9 million international haul, so the $35 million pic may need a bit more of a push to get over the profit edge, but given the positive buzz surrounding the film, I expect we could experience more cocaine-addled wildlife in the future.
In fourth place, anime title Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba - To the Swordsmith Village posted a $10.11 million weekend. While more of specialty feature than actual movie - and a far cry from the $22.8 million opening of Mugen Train last April, it is still a solid showing for the more niche anime title, though it has been gaining in popularity as of late. It has also grossed $25.4 million international for a $35.6 million global showing - not bad for what amounts to a bunch of episodes shown on the big screen.
Rounding out the top five, Jesus Revolution took a 46.4% hit for a $8.5 million weekend leading to a new $30.4 million domestic total. That is a solid showing for a Christian-themed film - but it needs to hit about $50 million to really make a profit. Don't count that out just yet as it seems to have found a pretty willing audience to back it up.
Outside the top five: The biggest disappointment of the weekend belongs to Guy Ritchie's Operation Fortune: Ruse de guerre which, despite a stacked cast featuring Jason Statham, Hugh Grant, Aubrey Plaza, Cary Elwes and Josh Hartnett, opened to just $3.14 million down in 7th place. That represents the worst opening for director Ritchie and is near the lowest for Statham (In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale bombed with a $2.9 million opening back in 2008), Audiences still awarded it a decent "B+" Cinemascore, it's just that not many chose to show up.
Next week Scream VI looks to slash the competition - and maybe a franchise-best opening. We also get Adam Driver battling dinosaurs in 65 and Woody Harrelson in the feel-good sport film Champions.
The MPAA Ratings Board continues their solid ratings run with a duo of big-name films, including the return of everyone's favorite adventure-seeking archaeologist and some high-fantasy hijinks courtesy of a popular board game.
So it has been a hot minute since we last caught up with Indiana Jones - and let's just say that Kingdom of the Crystal Skull left a bad taste in a lot of mouths. But that was all the way back in 2008 - we're in the Now... now - and we can all hope (BIG hope) that Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny can end this long-running franchise on a high note. Harrison Ford returns as the now quite aged famed archaeologist - and adventure is still on his mind, even if he thinks he's too old for this.. stuff. But his old friend, Sallah (John Rhys-Davies) is going to pull him back in for one, last ride - and, of course, there will be Nazis because why not? Long-time director Steven Spielberg and writer George Lucas are instead on board as executive producers with James Mangold (a diverse director having with Identity, 3:10 to Yuma, Logan and Ford v. Ferrari all under his belt) talking over behind the camera. Phoebe Waller-Bridge is on board as Helena, Jones' goddaughter - the catalyst for the affair - with Mads Mikkelsen as former Nazi Jürgen Voller involved in the NASA space race - but also pushing his own agenda as he sees fit. The cast also features Boyd Holbrook, Antonio Banderas, Toby Jones, Thomas Kretschmann and Shaunette Renée Wilson. While much of the plot has yet to be revealed, the space race does play a part and the previews thus far show plenty of action, including car chases and shoot-outs among others. Will this return the franchise to its former glory or, like Crystal Skull, be more of a letdown? We'll find out in June but I'm on board for this final ride. Rated PG-13 for sequences of violence and action, language and smoking.
There have been attempts at bringing popular fantasy board game Dungeons and Dragons to the big screen - most notably in 2000 - but none have fared that well. We're going to try this thing again with Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves featuring Chris Pine, Michelle Rodriguez, Justice Smith, Sophia Lillis, Regé-Jean Page, Daisy Head and Hugh Grant among the cast. Most of said cast is our band of intrepid adventurers who are on the quest for a powerful relic - but when said relic is given to the bad guys - our "heroes" must atone and prevent, you know, the end-of-the-world type stuff from happening. One thing is for sure, at least this film provides some great creature effects - owl bears, displacer beasts, gelatinous cubes and, of course, dragons (it's right there in the title!) - as a long-time D&D player, I'm excited. However, a dark cloud does hover over this film - as there is a call to boycott the film over the absolute fiasco over the D&D license that has long-time fans up in arms over the way the company has responded - often making things worse in the process. Whether this has a major effect on the bottom line remains to be seen. Rated PG-13 for fantasy action/violence and some language.
There you have the major films for this week but you can check out the full MPAA Ratings Bulletin below:
DUNGEONS & DRAGONS: HONOR AMONG THIEVES
Rated PG-13 for fantasy action/violence and some language.
THE END OF SEX
Rated R for sexual content, nudity, language and some drug use.
HOW TO BLOW UP A PIPELINE
Rated R for language throughout and some drug use.
INDIANA JONES AND THE DIAL OF DESTINY
Rated PG-13 for sequences of violence and action, language and smoking.
KATAK THE BRAVE BELUGA
Rated PG for mild peril, thematic elements and brief language.
Rated R for language and some sexual content.
Rated R for strong violence, some grisly images, sexual content and brief language.
PLEASE DON'T DESTROY
Rated R for pervasive language, sexual material, some drug material, brief graphic nudity and violence.
RESIDENET EVIL: DEATH ISLAND
Rated R for bloody violence and language.
Rated R for pervasive language, drug use, sexual content, nudity and some violence.
Rated R for strong violence and gore, drug use, graphic nudity, some sexual material and language throughout.
Rated R for sexual content, language throughout, teen partying and brief graphic nudity.
A THOUSAND AND ONE
Rated R for language.
YOUNG WOMAN AND THE SEA
Rated PG for thematic elements, some language and partial nudity.