Weekend Box Office

Weekend Box Office Results: Joker Becomes Biggest R-Rated Film Ever

The Joaquin Phoenix film gets more reason to smile with $18.9 million haul while The Lighthouse shines bright in the top 10 on the weekend of October 25-27.

by | October 27, 2019 | Comments

Audiences were not done with the winners of the box office last week – including Joker and Maleficent – though they certainly did flip the script on a few of them. The DC villain overtook the Disney villain to reclaim his weekly crown, while Joker also celebrates an all-new crown as the highest-grossing R-rated film of all-time. The final weekend of October was certainly calm for the newcomers but the storm is coming soon as the Holiday movie season kicks off in earnest next week. Until then, the winners and losers of the Autumn season look pretty clear.


King of the Crop: Joker Sets October And R-Rated Record

Niko Tavernise/© 2019 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
(Photo by © Warner Bros. )

Joker is the King in more ways than one. It is the first movie to regain the number 1 spot at the box office after being dethroned since A Quiet Place did it in April 2018. With over $277 million on Sunday, it surpasses Gravity to become the highest-grossing film ever released in October and, as mentioned, it has also passed Deadpool 2 as the top R-rated grosser worldwide with over $790 million. The $18.7 million that Joker made in weekend four is higher than both Thor: Ragnarok ($16.86 million) and Iron Man 2 ($16.45 million), as well as Deadpool 2 ($14.41 million). That suggests Joker is headed for somewhere over $320 million domestic and on its way to over $900 million worldwide. Joker is going to have the biggest profit of the Autumn season by over three times more than Warner Brothers’ other big hit of the season, It: Chapter Two. Other winners include Focus Features’ Downton Abbey and STX’s Hustlers.


Rotten Returns: Maleficent Sequel Trailing Well Behind Original, But Some Signs of Hope

Angelina Jolie is Maleficent in Disney’s MALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVIL. (Walt Disney Pictures)
(Photo by © Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil is in the running for an altogether different crown at the other end of the spectrum: that of one of the biggest bombs of the year. The international dollar is going to ultimately decide its final placement, but as of this weekend it has grossed just $65 million domestically and is in danger of not even crossing the $100 million line. (Its predecessor cleared $240 million.) The sequel is just a bit behind the 10-day grosses of Paranormal Activity 2 and Red Dragon, though it did gross a little more in weekend two than either of them. Those films, nevertheless, finished with only $84.75 million and $93.14 million, respectively.

Good news for the Mistress of Evil is that family films are in short supply until Frozen 2 opens on November 22; neither Arctic Dogs nor Playing with Fire is likely to draw much business away from it. But even if Maleficent can reach nine digits here, it is still going to need to reach about $450 million internationally to break even. Currently it has made $228 million outside of its North American total. Still, Mistress of Evil looks like its red in the ledger will still be less than that of Paramount’s Gemini Man, which remains about $260 million away from the black. That would make it the clear loser in an Autumn season in which it has had plenty of company, including The Goldfinch, Ad Astra, and Rambo: Last Blood.


The Top 10 And Beyond: Newcomers Make a Dull Impact as The Lighthouse Shines

Countdown
(Photo by © STX Entertainment)

Neither of this weekend’s new releases posted noteworthy grosses, but neither were heavily budgeted either. Sony’s Black and Blue was the more expensive of the two, costing $12 million, so an $8.3 million start means it is likely headed at best for $20-$25 million total, if that. The horror film Countdown cost about half as much at $6.5 million and at least passed that figure with $9 million. It is also likely to take a small loss if it is forgotten by audiences once Halloween comes and goes.

Two films still looking to get out of the red for the Autumn season remained in the top four and could see a decent showing leading up to Halloween next Thursday. Last week’s newcomer Zombieland: Double Tap is now up to nearly $47 million. The original film had $47.6 million after 10 days and grossed $14.8 million in its second weekend; the sequel dropped 57% and grossed just $11.6 million, so it appears it is headed to somewhere below the first film’s $75.59 million. The Addams Family is also having a nice little run and looks headed for over $90 million with an outside shot at reaching $100 million which, globally, is the number it needs to start turning a profit. Its total stands worldwide at $84 million.

In other direct battles this weekend, we had one between musicians Kanye West and Bruce Springsteen. Kanye’s 31-minute short, Jesus Is King, grossed $830,000 in 372 IMAX theaters, which charge a bit extra no matter what the length, for a per-theater-average of $2,231. The Boss’ full-length music doc, Western Stars, was in 345 non-IMAX theaters and grossed just $560,000 for a $1,623 PTA. Then there was the battle between Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse in The Current War, labeled with “Director’s Cut” after the film spent two years on the shelf after premiering at the Toronto Film Festival in 2017 to mediocre reviews in the midst of the Harvey Weinstein scandal. It made just $2.73 million.

And that wasn’t all. There was also the showdown between Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe in The Lighthouse. Robert Eggers’ follow-up to The Witch expanded to 586 theaters and made the top 10 with a gross of $3.08 million. That is a better per-theater-average ($5,257) than the expansion of Sofia Coppola’s remake of The Beguiled in 2017, which started with $229,229 in four theaters and then grossed $3.16 million in 674 theaters. That film jumped up to its widest release the following week into 941 theaters and ultimately finished with $10.7 million. A24’s very first opening weekend wide launch was The Witch, which grossed $8.8 million in 2,046 theaters and finished with $25.13 million.

In other limited news, Bong Joon-Ho’s Parasite (Certified Fresh at 99%) continued to stay strong as it expanded into 129 theaters with $1.81 million. Comparing to similar platforming strategies, it is certainly in some great company. Boogie Nights went from 30-to-124 theaters in weekend three and grossed $1.8 million. Here are others in Parasite’s realm:

  • There Will Be Blood (51-to-129 screens): $1.86 million
  • Boyhood (34-to-107 screens): $1.76 million
  • Thank You For Smoking (54-to-126 screens): $1.60 million
  • The Farewell (35-to-135 screens): $1.51 million
  • The Theory of Everything (44-to-140 screens): $1.51 million
  • An Inconvenient Truth (77-to-122 screens): $1.5 million
  • Revolutionary Road (38-to-135 screens): $1.42 million
  • Into the Wild (33-to-135 screens): $1.27 million

The lowest-grossing film on that list overall was The Farewell with $17.67 million.

Finally, we’re looking at the second weekend of Taika Waititi’s Jojo Rabbit, which added another 50 theaters to last week’s launch of just five and grossed $1.04 million. That is right in line with Jason Reitman’s Thank You For Smoking, which Fox Searchlight saw gross $1,003,911 in 54 theaters after a $262,923 launch in five theaters. Other Fox Searchlight releases along these lines include Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, which made $1,102,166 in 53 theaters after a $322,168 start in four theaters, and Birdman, which made $1.37 million (50 theaters) after $424,397 (four theaters). Jojo Rabbit is up to $1.5 million after 10 days of release.


This Time Last Year: Halloween Wins Halloween Weekend

The pre-Halloween weekend in 2018 was won by (what else?) David Gordon Green’s Halloween, which earned $31.4 million in its second weekend, crossing the $125 million line. A Star is Born was second with $14.03 million and Venom finished third with $10.65 million. The only newcomer to enter the top 10 was the Gerard Butler submarine thriller, Hunter Killer, which opened to just $6.65 million. Johnny English Strikes Again and the faith-based Indivisible opened in less than 1,000 theaters and grossed just $1.63 million and $1.50 million, respectively; Jonah Hill’s mid90s was expanded into 1,206 theaters and held the number 10 spot with $2.98 million. The top 10 films grossed a total of $90.99 million and averaged an even 65% on the Tomatometer; this year’s top 10 grossed $89.88 million and averaged 55%.


On the Vine: He Said He’d Be Back

The holiday movie season officially begins and one film should have no problem ruling them all: Terminator: Dark Fate is primed to lead the way with both Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton returning to the franchise. The movie is already earning solid reviews, particularly when compared to the previous sequels; its current Tomatometer score is 65%. Dark Fate started with $12.8 million overseas in 10 territories this weekend. The holiday season also means it is awards season and a couple of Oscar wannabes begin their runs next week: Edward Norton’s Motherless Brooklyn and Harriet with Cynthia Erivo as Harriet Tubman. Finally there is Entertainment Studios’ first animated release, Arctic Dogs, featuring the voice work of Jeremy Renner, James Franco, and Alec Baldwin, which is expected to be on the low end of animated openings.


The Full Top 10: October 25-27

  1. Joker (2019) 68% – $18.9 million ($277.58 million total)
  2. Maleficent: Mistress of Evil (2019) 40% – $18.54 million ($65.41 million total)
  3. The Addams Family (2019) 44% – $11.71 million ($72.8 million total)
  4. Zombieland: Double Tap (2019) 68% – $11.6 million ($47 million total)
  5. Countdown (2019) 26% – $9.01 million ($9.01 million total)
  6. Black and Blue (2019) 51% – $8.33 million ($8.33 million total)
  7. Gemini Man (2019) 26% – $4 million ($43.34 million total)
  8. The Lighthouse (2019) 90% – $3.08 million ($3.66 million total)
  9. The Current War: Director's Cut (2019) 61% – $2.73 million ($2.73 million total)
  10. Abominable (2019) 81% – $2 million ($56.82 million total)

Erik Childress can be heard each week evaluating box office on WGN Radio with Nick Digilio as well as on Business First AM with Angela Miles and his Movie Madness Podcast.

[box office figures via Box Office Mojo]


Like this? Subscribe to our newsletter and get more features, news, and guides in your inbox every week.

Tag Cloud

Premiere Dates Binge Guide Warner Bros. stand-up comedy Columbia Pictures dark golden globes IFC Films HBO boxoffice Schedule Sony Pictures Marvel BET TNT Family sequels quibi anime American Society of Cinematographers Calendar dramedy adaptation History sequel Tumblr 2020 Mindy Kaling Stephen King sag awards WarnerMedia comiccon WGN cooking robots hist El Rey Disney Channel Rocky Quiz TV Land Reality Competition supernatural Mary Tyler Moore TV TV renewals 2015 Women's History Month LGBTQ aliens scary movies films joker movie stoner Holiday travel CMT cancelled TV shows Heroines Photos classics Syfy BBC One Fantasy Writers Guild of America franchise toy story Crackle BET Awards Star Wars all-time Captain marvel comic diversity Lionsgate independent universal monsters chucky animated Ovation transformers Grammys ABC sitcom Esquire directors YouTube Red witnail crime drama christmas movies Black History Month Awards Tour strong female leads Song of Ice and Fire YouTube Premium DirecTV obituary mockumentary TCM Disney spanish language binge GIFs TruTV screenings rotten movies we love Peacock Musicals foreign Creative Arts Emmys SundanceTV Vudu Apple VH1 FOX Sneak Peek technology critics USA Winners anthology parents Food Network Anna Paquin Emmys war Hulu criterion spinoff dogs DC streaming service natural history Fox News Mary Poppins Returns Television Critics Association psychological thriller book First Reviews Mystery science fiction Disney+ Disney Plus CNN USA Network DC Universe See It Skip It Pirates VICE Martial Arts zero dark thirty indie Cannes mission: impossible Freeform disaster sports Nominations E! Elton John Shondaland Amazon nature period drama TCA richard e. Grant ABC Family SXSW docudrama elevated horror Holidays space Tubi OneApp Paramount crossover Dark Horse Comics Pop TV 45 Nickelodeon DGA Horror Turner Classic Movies Countdown romance BBC America spain Hallmark HBO Max Avengers A&E Superheroe Funimation composers FX on Hulu Television Academy nbcuniversal APB Disney streaming service Drama tv talk Nat Geo reviews news Film Festival cops game show Teen teaser MTV cartoon IFC Black Mirror E3 Epix Showtime GLAAD die hard 20th Century Fox documentary BBC talk show Sundance adventure NYCC werewolf Trivia satire Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Toys Podcast asian-american Year in Review Sundance Now spy thriller Character Guide zombies A24 miniseries First Look Thanksgiving The CW Comedy Emmy Nominations 72 Emmy Awards Western Action CBS cats video on demand Film 2019 Turner TBS Travel Channel casting TCA Winter 2020 HBO Go free movies 24 frames Mudbound discovery Super Bowl Watching Series GoT DC Comics fast and furious crime thriller crime Pet Sematary harry potter Rock Amazon Prime ITV finale Arrowverse doctor who Polls and Games vampires Infographic PlayStation The Witch best hollywood BAFTA Musical unscripted game of thrones Adult Swim screen actors guild Cosplay FXX indiana jones Rom-Com VOD PaleyFest Lifetime Christmas movies CW Seed MSNBC 21st Century Fox Kids & Family Lifetime biography TIFF FX Biopics child's play Sundance TV documentaries Christmas Comic Book Marvel Television Pop halloween TCA Awards hispanic PBS canceled TV shows comics NBC jamie lee curtis Winter TV movies Amazon Studios streaming Britbox Awards 2018 singing competition Shudder ghosts MCU 2017 twilight Valentine's Day true crime Trophy Talk Hear Us Out romantic comedy X-Men OWN spider-man Paramount Network video TLC historical drama police drama Fall TV Mary poppins Extras Pride Month Election Amazon Prime Video Netflix Sci-Fi Academy Awards psycho Spring TV Baby Yoda versus Universal Lucasfilm name the review kids RT History Netflix Christmas movies Rocketman Set visit Summer The Walking Dead breaking bad festivals 007 a nightmare on elm street Apple TV+ Video Games based on movie dceu Oscars Chernobyl dc television YA concert blockbuster Crunchyroll Hallmark Christmas movies Certified Fresh Country Walt Disney Pictures medical drama 4/20 reboot Brie Larson Masterpiece SDCC New York Comic Con Music National Geographic Chilling Adventures of Sabrina political drama slashers social media stop motion cars The Purge zombie what to watch Best and Worst Spectrum Originals Comedy Central Classic Film Marvel Studios Comics on TV LGBT superhero theme song Star Trek latino Tarantino thriller canceled Discovery Channel comedies Marathons Cartoon Network revenge serial killer 71st Emmy Awards Endgame ratings blaxploitation Ellie Kemper YouTube Logo politics worst Disney Plus cinemax The Arrangement Acorn TV AMC mutant President San Diego Comic-Con CBS All Access dragons laika Animation renewed TV shows Spike cancelled award winner Reality TCA 2017 ESPN cancelled television Red Carpet justice league RT21 Starz south america Box Office series batman cancelled TV series Apple TV Plus 2016 emmy awards Interview rotten cults Ghostbusters facebook children's TV Tomatazos Superheroes green book Trailer Bravo Pixar Opinion