News

'Pets 2' and 'Dark Phoenix' Top Weekend Box Office, Though Both Underperform

by Brad Brevet
 

 
June 9, 2019

The weekend's top twelve combined to outperform the same weekend last year by more than 43%, which means the year-to-year gap continues to close, but the weekend's new releases both struggled mightily. Universal and Illumination's The Secret Life of Pets 2 was unable to even deliver half of the opening the first film delivered just a few years ago, while Fox's Dark Phoenix entered the weekend as the worst reviewed film in the X-Men franchise ever and, predictably, delivered the lowest opening weekend of the franchise.

At the top of the box office is Universal and Illumination's The Secret Life of Pets 2 with an estimated $47.1 million from 4,561 locations (the second widest opening ever only to Avengers: Endgame). The performance is less than half of the original, 2016 film's $104.3 million, which remains a record opening for an original, animated feature. Heading into the weekend expectations weren't exactly meteoric, with the studio hoping for an opening over $50 million, but even that proved an impossible task.

Looking ahead, Pets 2 received an "A-" CinemaScore from opening day audiences, while playing to a crowd that was 57% female with 62% of the film's opening crowd being family moviegoers. As for the film's future, it compares to the $48.4 million opening for Hotel Transylvania 2 and the $47.6 million debut for Kung Fu Panda 2, both of which went on to gross over $165 million, albeit neither played in the middle of the summer movie season, which will make the future of this film interesting to watch.

Internationally, Pets 2 began playing overseas two weeks ago and this weekend added 21 markets including the Netherlands ($1.7m), Vietnam ($1.3m), Italy ($1.1m) and Taiwan ($800k). Overall, the film brought in $16 million this weekend from a total of 30 markets for an international cume that currently stands at $49 million. The film's top market is Russia with just shy of $17 million with openings yet to come in Australia (Jun 20), Germany (Jun 27), Brazil (Jun 27), China (Jul 5), Japan (Jul 26), Korea (Jul 31), France (Jul 31), Spain (Aug 9) and Mexico (Aug 9).

In second place things don't get any better as Disney's release of Fox's Dark Phoenix could only manage an estimated $33 million debut, making it the first film in the X-Men franchise to fail to deliver a $50+ million opening. In fact, like Pets 2 the film's opening is well off even the studio's modest, $40-50 million expectations and over $30 million shy of the disappointing, $65.7 million opening for X-Men: Apocalypse three years ago.

The average multiplier for films in the X-Men franchise is 2.5x, which would suggest we're looking at an $82.5 million domestic run for Dark Phoenix, which would make it the first film in the franchise to finish below $100 million domestically. The film received a "B-" CinemaScore from opening day audiences, which is a grade below the "A-" score for X-Men: Apocalypse, as audiences seemed to agree with the negative critical reception. The audience was 57% male with 61% of the opening weekend crowd coming in aged 25 years or older.

Internationally, Dark Phoenix debuted in all but Japan this weekend, bringing in an estimated $107 million, led by a $45.6 million opening in China. Additional openings include South Korea ($5.7m), Mexico ($5.0m), UK ($4.9m), France ($3.8m), Russia ($3.4m), Brazil ($2.9m), Philippines ($2.4m), Taiwan ($2.3m) and India ($2.3m). The film will open in Japan on June 21.

Disney's Aladdin took third with an estimated $24.5 million, signaling a solid, -43% drop as it enters its third week in release. The film's domestic cume is now over $232 million. Internationally, the film added another $67.6 million this weekend for an overseas cume totaling $372.5 million, pushing Aladdin's global tally just shy of $605 million

In fourth, Warner's Godzilla: King of the Monsters dropped hard, falling -67.5% for an estimated $15.5 million second weekend. The drop isn't exactly a surprise, though it is a fraction steeper than the large, -67% drop the 2014 original felt, which continues to put a question mark on the film's overall domestic run and whether or not it will be able to go much higher than $100 million. The film's domestic gross currently stands at $78.6 million.

Internationally, Godzilla added $47.1 million this weekend for an overseas cume that stands at $213.7 million and a global tally topping $292 million. Spain remains the final key market for the film, where it will release on June 21.

Rounding out the top five is Paramount's Rocketman, which dropped -46% in its second weekend for an estimated $14 million. The film's domestic cume now stands at just over $50 million after ten days in release. Internationally, the film added $13 million from 50 markets for an overseas cume that now totals just over $51 million and a worldwide gross over $101 million.

In limited release, Amazon Studios began the platform release of their record, $13 million Sundance acquisition, Late Night, debuting the film in four locations this weekend with an estimated $249,654 and a chart-topping $62,414 per theater average. The film will go nationwide in over 1,500 locations next weekend.

Additionally, A24's The Last Black Man In San Francisco opened in seven theaters in NY, LA and San Francisco and delivered an estimated $230,744 for a per screen average of $32,963. The film will expand into top markets next weekend.

Other limited releases include CBS Films's Pavarotti, which opened in 19 locations with an estimated $142,500 ($7,500 PTA); Super's This One's for the Ladies opened in one theater with an estimated $16,000; and IFC's Framing John DeLorean brought in an estimated $9,106 from one theater.

Next weekend will see Sony's release of Men in Black International debut in over 3,800 location; WB will release Shaft in over 2,900 theaters; Focus will debut Jim Jarmusch's The Dead Don't Die in approximately 550 theaters; and the aforementioned Amazon release Late Night will go into wide release.

You can check out all of this weekend's estimated results right here and we'll be updating our charts with weekend actuals on Monday afternoon.

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LATEST UPDATES
New MPAA Ratings Added
DAILY: Monday, 6/17 (31 tracked)
WEEKEND: Weekend Actuals, 'Men in Black' #1
DAILY: Friday, 'Men in Black' #1
WEEKLY: 'Pets 2' Tops the Week with $68.2m
DAILY: Thursday 6/13, (44 tracked)
DAILY: Wednesday, 6/12 (29 tracked)
DAILY: Tuesday, 6/11 (36 tracked)
> MORE UPDATES