'Pets' Slimes 'Ghostbusters' While 'Finding Dory' Swims to All-Time Domestic Record
For a fifth straight weekend in a row an animated film has taken the #1 spot at the box office as Illumination and Universal's The Secret Life of Pets followed up its record-breaking opening with a chart-topping sophomore session, pushing the launch of Sony's Ghostbusters reboot to second. Meanwhile, Finding Dory has now become the highest grossing animated release of all-time domestically as Warner Bros. adds two new films to 2016's century club with The Legend of Tarzan and The Conjuring 2. The weekend was down 26% from last week and ~17% compared to last year, yet there is still plenty to highlight.

The Secret Life of Pets finished #1 for a second weekend in a row with an estimated $50.5 million (51.5% drop), bringing its domestic cume to an impressive $203.1 million after just ten days in release. This already places the animated hit higher than Disney's Tangled and just behind Pixar's Ratatouille on the all-time animated chart.

Finishing second was Sony's Ghostbusters, which matched Mojo's weekend forecast with an estimated $46 million. This is the largest domestic opening for both director Paul Feig and Melissa McCarthy. Attention will now turn to the film's future prospects, mostly due to how well Feig and McCarthy's films have performed beyond their opening weekend.

A look at Feig's last three films—Spy, The Heat and Bridesmaids—we find them performing, on average, with a 4.778 multiple. Should Ghostbusters enjoy such a performance it would result in a domestic run right around $220 million.

Performing a similar evaluation of McCarthy's last six wide release comedies in which she plays the starring role we find, on average, a 4.136 multiplier. Should Ghostbusters perform similarly we're looking at a $190 million domestic performance once all is said and done. Of course, with the larger opening weekend, Ghostbusters isn't likely to deliver such high multiples, so, for the sake of comparison, here's a look at the multipliers for McCarthy's last six wide release comedies in which she played a starring role and what kind of domestic run Ghostbusters would be looking at if it performed similarly to any of them:

  • The Boss (2.674 multiplier) - $123 M
  • Spy* (3.810 multiplier) - $175.3 M
  • Tammy (3.917 multiplier) - $84.5 M
  • The Heat* (4.080 multiplier) - $187.7 M
  • Identity Thief (3.893 multiplier) - $179.1 M
  • Bridesmaids* (6.443 multiplier) - $296.4 M * Directed by Paul Feig

More realistically, we're probably looking at a domestic run around $135-145 million. Ghostbusters carries a $144 million budget (net after tax incentives and rebates) and received an "A-" CinemaScore for the under 25 crowd, and an overall "B+", on par with Bridesmaids and Spy and just behind The Heat's "A-".

Internationally, Ghostbusters delivered $19.1 million from three major territories along with a few smaller markets. The opening included $6.1 million from the UK where the film opened on July 11 along with $3.7 million from Australia and $2.2 million in Brazil. Key upcoming releases include Russia and Italy on July 28, Germany (Aug 4), France (Aug 10), Mexico and Spain on August 12 and Japan on August 19.

The weekend's other new wide release was Broad Green's The Infiltrator starring Bryan Cranston. The film opened on Wednesday and carried just under $1.5 million into the weekend where it grossed an estimated $5.28 million from 1,601 theaters, bringing its cume to $6.7 million. The performance resulted in an eighth place finish and the film scored a solid "A-" CinemaScore.

Moving back up the top ten, Warner Bros' The Legend of Tarzan continues to perform admirably, dropping 47% in its third weekend, resulting in an estimated $11.1 million as its domestic cume now climbs to just over $103 million. Warner Bros also saw The Conjuring 2 add another $860k to its domestic total as it became the 13th film released in 2016 to cross the century mark with an estimated $101.1 million.

As alluded to in the opening paragraph, Disney and Pixar's Finding Dory is now the highest grossing animated release of all-time domestically as it added an estimated $11 million to its domestic total, which now stands at $445.5 million. Here's the top five animated films of all-time domestically (not adjusted for inflation):

  • Finding Dory (2016) - $445.5 million
  • Shrek 2 (2004) - $441.2 million
  • The Lion King (1994) - $422.7 million
  • Toy Story 3 (2010) - $415 million
  • Frozen (2013) - $400.7 million Find the full list here and the adjusted for inflation list here

The weekend's per theater champ is Lionsgate's limited release of Woody Allen's Cafe Society. The film starring Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart brought in an estimated $355,000 from five theaters in New York and Los Angeles for a $71,000 per theater average, the largest PTA of 2016 and the 52nd largest of all-time.

Also in limited release, Dinesh D'Souza's documentary Hillary's America: The Secret History of the Democratic Party brought in an estimated $77,500 from three theaters for a per theater average of $25,833. The film is timed to release as the Republican National Convention gets underway this week as it will expand nationwide next weekend into 1,200+ theaters. Also, GKIDs released Phantom Boy into one theater this weekend where it brought in an estimated $4,804.

Next weekend sees the release of Star Trek Beyond into 3,500 theaters, Warner Bros will deliver the PG-13 horror Lights Out and Fox will release the fifth film in the Ice Age franchise, Ice Age: Collision Course, into 3,800 theaters. On a smaller scale, Fox Searchlight will release Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie into 250 theaters.

For a look at this weekend's estimated results click here and we'll be updating the charts with weekend actuals on Monday afternoon.

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