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Weekend Box Office Report: ‘Pixels’ Can’t Catch ‘Ant-Man’

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At the time of this writing, early estimates for the weekend box office have Ant-Man edging out Pixels for the top spot in this week’s top 10. That could change. With less than $1 million separating the films, Pixels may very well slide into first place tomorrow, winning one very close competition. But even if it does claim ultimate victory, it doesn’t change the fact that Pixels’ opening weekend is a massive disappointment and another nail in the coffin of Adam Sandler’s career.

Film Weekend Per Screen
1 Ant-Man $24,765,000 (-56.7) $6,403 $106,075,000
2 Pixels $24,000,000 $6,446 $24,000,000
3 Minions $22,100,000 (-55.1) $5,435 $261,620,000
4 Trainwreck $17,300,000 (-42.5) $5,456 $61,545,000
5 Southpaw $16,500,000
$5,952 $16,500,000
6 Paper Towns $12,500,000 $4,124 $12,500,000
7 Inside Out $7,356,000 (-36.3) $4,124 $320,335,000
8 Jurassic World $6,900,000 (-39.8) $2,609 $623,803,000
9 Mr. Holmes $2,849,000 (+17.0) $4,153 $6,432,000
10 Terminator Genisys $2,400,000 (-55.6) $1,410 $85,666,000

 

Pixels’ budget may be a little smaller than your average summer blockbuster, but $24 million is a not a great start. Considering that Adam Sandler films used to open north of $50 million on a regular basis, it’s telling that his big, special effects-fueled video game adventure couldn’t muster much interest. Those kinds of movies are supposed to make money by default, but the combination of Sandler fatigue and and absolutely brutal reviews shut this one down quick. It’s entirely possible for Pixels to hit $70 million or so, but $100 million is definitely out of the question, barring a miracle (and this movie seems to be entirely out of miracles).

While Pixels disappointed with $24 million, Southpaw and Paper Towns did a’ight with $16 million and $12 million, respectively. They were much cheaper movies and while they’re not going to be smash hits, they’re going to make their money back for sure. $40 or $50 million seem like reasonable guesses for how far they will ultimately go, but counter-programming (i.e., boxing movies and teen weepies) can grow strong legs this late in the summer. Keep an eye on these two.

So let’s double back to Ant-Man, which took a fairly standard 56 percent fall from its opening and made $24 million, bumping it over the $100 million mark. It should make it to $150 million without any real problems and anything beyond that is just a bonus. This is fairly standard business for a solo Marvel movie starring a new superhero who is not Iron Man.

In third place, Minions plummeted again, earning $22 million for a $261 million total. These are excellent numbers and the movie is already a hit, but the chances of it earning $400 million (which we estimated after its opening) are looking slimmer by the day. Heck, it may have to stretch to catch up with Inside Out at this point, which is sitting comfortably at $320 million.

Elsewhere, Jurassic World officially surpassed The Avengers, but it’s close to running on fumes and will have to fight to catch Titanic. Terminator Genisys is officially going to vanish from theaters without hitting $100 million. And Mr. Holmes continued to kick butt in limited release, rising up a spot in the top 10 and adding $2 million to its total gross.

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