‘Raya And The Last Dragon’ Three-peats At The Box Office With $5.2 Million In Its Third Weekend As Los Angeles Theater Re-openings Goose Ticket Sales
The old saying that the rising tide lifts all boats was certainly true this weekend as the re-opening of Los Angeles’ movie houses goosed ticket sales across the board, sparking hopes that a theatrical rebound may finally be on the horizon.

Leading the pack for the third straight weekend was Disney’s computer-animated adventure Raya and the Last Dragon, which added another $5.2 million to its domestic box office haul. Despite being available as a premium access title on the Disney+ streaming platform for a $30 fee, the three-week-old title featuring the voices of Kelly Marie Tran and Awkwafina slipped just -9.8% from the previous frame. The PG-rated film earned a $2,277 per-screen average in 2,261 theaters, bringing its domestic box office total to $23.4 million. Raya, meanwhile, has racked up $37.2 million overseas to date, pushing its cumulative worldwide total after three weeks to $60.6 million.

Theaters in Los Angeles, the biggest movie-going market in the country, were finally given permission to re-open back on March 12. But it wasn’t until this weekend that their impact was truly felt since it took time for many exhibitors to get up and running. Even with capacity limited at 25%, the city’s re-lit screens reportedly accounted for 9% of all tickets sold in North America this weekend. The mega-chain AMC, which shuttered all of its locations exactly a year ago, predicted that 99% of its locations would be open for business by the end of March. That's just in time to welcome a pair of big-ticket titles scheduled for release next weekend: Warner Bros.’ mega-monster smackdown Godzilla Vs. Kong and Universal’s Nobody—an eagerly-awaited action flick from the creator of John Wick starring Better Call Saul’s Bob Odenkirk (Nobody grossed $2.6 million this weekend from four overseas markets).

Finishing in second place (again) was Warner Bros.’ Tom and Jerry, which pulled in $3.8 million in its fourth week of release. The PG-rated ‘toon starring the iconic, squabbling cat-and-mouse team slid a mere -7.3% from last weekend and scored a $1,515 per-screen average in 2,508 locations. Its four-week domestic total is now $33.7 million. Abroad, the film has added $43.5 million thus far, bringing its worldwide tally to $77.2 million.

In third was the weekend’s top newcomer, Roadside Attractions’ The Courier. The Cold War thriller revolving around the Cuban Missile Crisis and starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Rachel Brosnahan debuted to $2 million. The PG-13-rated rookie earned a $1,404 per-screen average in 1,433 theaters. It has not yet opened overseas.

Just below, in fourth place, was Lionsgate’s Chaos Walking, which tacked on $1.9 million in its third session. The PG-13-rated dystopian sci-fi thriller starring Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley dropped off -14.4% from the prior weekend, unspooling in 2,132 theaters, which translated to a $902 per-screen average. The film has snagged $9.7 million at the North American box office so far, with another $5 million from foreign markets, putting its worldwide cume at $14.7 million.

In fifth place was Universal and DreamWorks’ The Croods: A New Age, which refuses to budge from the Top 5 after seventeen weeks in theaters. The PG-rated ‘toon tacked on another $620,000 domestically—a +14.6 boost in business from the previous weekend. The Croods had a $439 per-screen average in 1,411 theaters. Its domestic box-office total now stands at $55.2 million, and has added $104.8 million from foreign territories, putting its worldwide total at $160 million.

The only other new release of note (and it was a flat note) was Saban Films’ City of Lies. The speculative crime drama about the murders of Tupac Shakur and Notorious B.I.G. starring Johnny Depp couldn’t seem to overcome poor reviews or its leading man’s offscreen scandals. The R-rated film debuted in twelfth place, scraping up just $275,049.

Still, there was some upbeat news for a handful of prestige films that got a boost from last week’s Oscar nominations: A24’s Minari, which grabbed six nods, saw a +131.4% bump in business; Warner Bros. Judas and the Black Messiah, which got five nominations, was up +48.8%; and Focus Features’ Promising Young Woman, which also got five nods, got a +117.8% boost.