'Don't Breathe' Scares Off Competition With $26M Opening Weekend
Led by a fantastic opening for Screen Gems' new thriller Don't Breathe, this weekend over performed expectations with the top twelve delivering a 43.5% improvement over the same weekend last year, just barely coming up shy of a combined $100 million. Along with the stellar opening for Don't Breathe, Mechanic: Resurrection had a solid opening for Lionsgate & Co., the moderate release of Southside with You performed well, the expansion of Hell or High Water continues to impress and Bad Moms has another great hold as the R-rated comedy approaches $100 million domestically.

At the top, Don't Breathe delivered an estimated $26.1 million besting Mojo's projections, which were nearly double the studio's conservative expectations, by $5.6 million. The film, which was made for just under $10 million, delivered 2.6 times its budget domestically and received a "B+" CinemaScore from opening day audiences. The opening compares favorably to last year's The Visit, which opened with $25.4 million and a "B-" CinemaScore and went on to gross over $65 million. Director Fede Alvarez's last film, the 2013 remake of Evil Dead opened with $25.7 million and went on to gross nearly $55 million domestically. Depending on next weekend's holdover, a range of $55-65 million domestically seems reasonable given the film's strong opening and 87% rating on RottenTomatoes.

In addition to its domestic premiere, Don't Breathe also brought in an estimated $1.9 million from seven international markets including Russia ($915k), Malaysia ($420k) and a #1 opening in Singapore with an estimated $200k. The film will hit theaters in Australia and Spain next week followed by releases in Brazil, Germany, Italy and the UK the following week with Mexico (Sep 16), France (Oct 5) and South Korea (Oct 6) in the near future.

The weekend's other new wide release within the top ten is Mechanic: Resurrection, which is the first wide release from Lionsgate's specialty arm Lionsgate Premiere, which has typically delivered limited and On Demand releases, in conjunction with Lionsgate-owned Summit Entertainment. Resurrection received a "B+" CinemaScore from opening day audiences and finished fifth with an estimated $7.5 million weekend, which is on the higher end of weekend expectations.

Lionsgate acquired domestic and UK rights for the film for single-digit millions and marketing costs were in the mid-teens. This is the 11th film Lionsgate has distributed starring Jason Statham and the opening is being looked at as a success as Statham films not only perform well in the UK, but do extremely well on home entertainment, delivering returns from 150-200% of their box office receipts.

This weekend also featured two moderate releases opening in just over 800 theaters each. First off, Roadside and Miramax's story of Barack and Michelle Obama's first date in Southside with You delivered an estimated $3 million from 813 theaters. The film was one of the hot acquisitions from the 2016 Sundance Film Festival and has the distinction of having the largest opening weekend so far when compared to the rest of 2016's Sundance acquisitions.

The Weinstein's release of Hands of Stone into 810 theaters delivered an estimated $1.7 million. The film was original slated to go wide in approximately 2,000 theaters this weekend, but the plan now is to expand this coming Wednesday, adding approximately 1,500 theaters ahead of the long Labor Day weekend.

Looking at the week's holdovers, Suicide Squad dropped only 42% for a second place finish with an estimated $12.1 million bringing its domestic cume to $282.9 million. Internationally the film added another $19.6 million this weekend bringing its international cume to $353.1 million and a worldwide gross-to-date of $636 million, ranking eighth amongst all 2016 releases.

Focus and Laika's Kubo and the Two Strings dropped only 37% in its second weekend for an estimated $7.9 million and Sony's Sausage Party brought in another $7.66 million for a fourth place finish in its third weekend as the R-rated animated feature's domestic cume now sits just over $80 million.

Other sophomore sessions include a 51% drop for WB's War Dogs, which finished seventh with an estimated $7.25 million for a cume totaling $27.7 million and Paramount and MGM's Ben-Hur dropped even more than projected, falling nearly 60% for an estimated $4.5 million and a tenth place finish.

Elsewhere in the top ten, STX's Bad Moms continues its impressive domestic run, dropping a mere 27.5% in its fifth weekend, bringing in an estimated $5.76 million as its domestic cume now stands at $95.4 million with $100 million firmly in its sights.

Bad Moms also added 13 new markets internationally this weekend including the UK, Mexico and New Zealand as it brought in an estimated $6.3 million from 46 total markets now in release bringing its international cume to $28.7 million for a worldwide gross-to-date of $124.15 million.

Just outside the top ten we find CBS Films and Lionsgate's slowly expanding release of Hell or High Water, which is now playing in 909 theaters (+437) and brought in an estimated $3.7 million. The film will continue its expansion next week.

In limited release it was Cohen Media's re-release of Howards End that topped the per theater charts as it brought in an estimated $24,822 from two theaters for a $12,411 PTA. Just behind it Sony Classics' release of The Hollars brought in an estimated $46,068 from four theaters for a $11,517 PTA.

Well Go's release of the hit South Korean disaster film Tunnel grossed an estimated $180,465 in 36 theaters ($5,013 PTA); Music Box released Nanni Moretti's Mia Madre in six theaters where it grossed an estimated $35,000 ($5,833 PTA); IFC debuted Complete Unknown starring Rachel Weisz and Michael Shannon into two theaters where it brought in an estimated $15,680 ($7,840 PTA); and Kino Lorber's release of the Cesar-winning film Fatima brought in an estimated $6,400 from one theater.

One international highlight includes the release of Jason Bourne in China where it has brought in an estimated $50 million since its release on Tuesday. The release wasn't all roses, however, as Universal released an exclusive 3-D version of the film in China, which has reportedly received its share of complaints and demands for refunds. Universal is said to have responded by "working with Chinese distribution companies China Film Group and Huaxia Film Distribution to arrange more 2D screenings". Jason Bourne is now up to $198.5 million internationally, which, combined with its nearly $150 million domestic cume, puts the film's worldwide total at $347.8 million, making it the second largest film in the Bourne franchise.

Finally, with an estimated $271,000 this weekend, Disney's The Jungle Book has now passed Deadpool to become the third largest domestic release of 2016 with $363.5 million. Disney now holds the top three positions at the 2016 domestic box office and the top four positions at the 2016 worldwide box office.

Next weekend is a long Labor Day weekend and it will see the release of the sci-fi thriller Morgan in approximately 2,000 theaters and the Dreamworks and Touchstone release of The Light Between Oceans in approximately 1,500 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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