The toxicity surrounding Fox’s Fantastic Four reboot has denied the studio what should have been an easy box office victory this morning. Both the original Fantastic Four (2005) and its 2007 sequel opened with over $55 million. Projections for this latest Marvel Comics property were in the $45 million range. In terms of previous Marvel adaptations, that would have put the new Fantastic Four on par with Sony’s Ghost Rider, from 2007. But that didn’t happen. Instead, F4 earned an estimated $26.2 million from its 3,995 locations. That is more than Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance managed in 2012, but it still puts the film at the back of the pack in terms of Marvel Comics debuts.
The collapse of Fantastic Four means that Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation remains the number one movie in North America. The fifth film in the M:I franchise pulled in an estimated $29.4 million from 3,988 locations, including 365 IMAX screens. Like Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol before it, IMAX has had a huge role in the Rogue Nation story. You may recall that M:I4 opened in just 425 locations in December 2011 – the fact that a majority of those screens were large format helped the film lock down a third place debut on a very competitive frame. Though Rogue Nation went with a traditional launch, its IMAX numbers are still noteworthy. in North America alone IMAX has added $15.5 million to the film’s total gross, helping MI:5 cross the $100 million mark in ten days. Ghost Protocol took 14 days to hit the same mark, but only due to its platform-style release.
In third place this weekend, The Gift is exceeding expectations. The thriller starring Jason Bateman doubled its pre-release projection of $6 million, taking in $12 million from 1,648 locations. That represents a stronger per-screen average ($7,287) than Fantastic Four managed this weekend, which is a good omen for the first release from newcomer STX Entertainment. Also good for STX? The fact that The Gift stands at 93% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes and was budgeted at a thrifty $5 million.
Sony’s Ricki and the Flash had a slightly higher budget ($18 million) and a slightly lower theatre count (1,603) than The Gift. And where the latter is impressing critics, the Jonathan Demme dramedy has met with more mixed results (59% RT rating). Ricki and the Flash opened in seventh place this weekend with an estimated $7 million. That’s in line with pre-release projections and is only slightly less than August: Osage County, another ensemble dramedy headlined by Meryl Streep, brought in on its first weekend in wide release.
After a fairly disastrous start last weekend, Vacation actually held well in its sophomore frame. The comedy remake starring Ed Helms was off just 38% from its debut. Even so, with a domestic cume of $37.3 million after 12 days, Vacation is running well behind expectations. Most of us assumed the film would hit $35 million in its first five days.
Overall, this weekend’s domestic box office was off by a giant 30% from 2014, when Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Guardians of the Galaxy took the first and second spots on top of the box office. Looking ahead, the NWA biopic Straight Outta Compton is the favorite for first place next weekend, with a projection of $40 million or more. The prospects for Warner Bros.’ The Man From U.N.C.L.E. are more modest, with between $15 – $20 million expected for the TV series turned feature film.
Here’s this weekend’s top ten:
|1.||M:I – Rogue Nation||$29,400,000||$108.6|
|7.||Ricki and the Flash||$7,000,000||$7.4|