Weekend Box Office

Weekend Box Office Results: Maleficent Knocks Out Joker With $36 Million

Plus, Zombieland: Double Tap turns in a solid debut performance on the weekend of October 18-20.

by | October 20, 2019 | Comments

Moviegoers had a chance to return to Zombieland this weekend and many of them did. But it was Angelina Jolie’s Maleficent that was able to put the Joker in his place — second place, that is, as Joaquin Phoenix’s interpretation of the Clown Prince of Crime heads much quicker than anyone thought for the all-time October record. The numbers were solid this weekend on the surface, making for a nice October weekend, but profit for the newcomers is still up in the air.


Queen of the Crop: Joker Bows Down to Maleficent 

Angelina Jolie is Maleficent in Disney’s MALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVIL. (Walt Disney Pictures)

Debbie Day

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil took the top spot this weekend with $36 million, but won’t continue Disney’s unprecedented streak of releasing four billion-dollar films in a row. The $185 million–budgeted film joins a number of sequels in 2019 that have had significant drop-offs from their predecessors. Seven of them have fallen off 50 percent or higher from the previous film and they include:

The Angry Birds Movie 2 (-72.9 percent), Happy Death Day 2U (-63.5 percent), Shaft (-59 percent), A Dog’s Journey (-55.9 percent), The Secret Life of Pets 2 (-55.3 percent), The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part (-50.6 percent), and Dark Phoenix (-50.1 percent).

The Angry Birds Movie 2 actually opened on a Tuesday, but even if you added the $5.7 million it made from Tuesday to Thursday, it would still have opened to 50 percent lower than the $38.1 million of the original. Disney’s Maleficent opened to $69.43 million back in the summer of 2014. The $36 million Mistress of Evil grossed this weekend represents a 48.2 percent drop, putting it between Godzilla: King of the Monsters (-48.7 percent) and Men In Black International (-45 percent) — the latter more of a spin-off than direct sequel — for the ninth-worst drop of the year among sequels or follow-ups. Globally the film is up to $153 million, but it is going to need well over $500 million total to break even. The only sequels this year to reach the total are the ones you would expect: Avengers: Endgame, Toy Story 4, Spider-Man: Far From Home, and How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World.


Top 10 and Beyond: Zombieland: Double Tap Debuts to $26.7 Million

Zombieland Double Tap (Columbia Pictures)

(Photo by Columbia Pictures)

Zombieland: Double Tap did get off to a nice start for Sony. The original opened to $24.73 million in 2009 and given that would equate to about $29.6 million 10 years later, a $26.7 million opening for the sequel still is not too bad. The budget did increase from $23 million to $42 million, however, so this one also has its work cut out for it. Ruben Fleischer’s debut managed to score $75.5 million domestically but just $102.3 million total worldwide. Some estimates suggested that film even missed its profit margin due to extensive advertising costs. Like most of the top films this week, including phenomenon Joker, Zombieland: Double Tap could easily benefit from the upcoming pre-Halloween weekend.

Grossing $29.2 million in its third weekend, Joker will pass Gravity to become the all-time champion of October. Joker’s third weekend is a far greater than any of the films comparative to its $246 million 17-day total, such as Man of Steel, Thor: Ragnarok, and the first parts of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Those films grossed between $16.5 million and $21.6 million in weekend three. For Joker, $300 million now seems very likely, and the film’s global total stands at over $737 million, which makes Joker far and away Warner Bros.’ biggest hit of the year and one of the year’s biggest successes. Joker will become the seventh-highest grossing film worldwide by next weekend.

Last week’s The Addams Family dropped 47 percent to $16.1 million, but its 10-day total of $56.81 million has not only driven ahead of what Abominable has made in four weeks ($53.91 million), but ahead of the pace of Where the Wild Things Are, which topped out at $77.3 million. The $40 million–budgeted film should cross $80 million with no problem and get a decent stay next week with parents looking for some spooky family-oriented entertainment to take their kids to. Though it will need to cross $100 million globally to turn a profit, The Addams Family is in much better shape than Paramount and Ang Lee’s $138-million budgeted Gemini Man, which fell 58.6% this weekend to $8.5 million. It is only at $118 million worldwide.

In milestone news, Lorene Scafaria’s Hustlers passed the $100 million mark this week. Downton Abbey became Focus’ all-time domestic grosser, passing Brokeback Mountain, and Roadside’s Judy is now their fifth highest-grossing film ever with designs on passing The Peanut Butter Falcon this week and maybe even Mud’s $21.5 million for third place.

Three big limited-release stories are brewing right now for three filmmakers who have generated significant buzz on the festival circuit. A24 released Robert Eggers’ follow-up to The Witch in eight theaters this weekend. The Lighthouse (93% on the Tomatometer) grossed $419,000 in those eight theaters; the third-best total ever for a launch in that number of theaters behind The Big Short ($705,527) and Memoirs of a Geisha ($682,504) and ahead of Match Point ($398,593) and Dead Poets Society ($340,456). A24 will reportedly expand it into 500 theaters, similar to the strategy of last year’s Blindspotting, which went from 11 theaters (opening to $338,999) and moving to 523 theaters (where it grossed $1.28 million). The Lighthouse is one to watch next weekend.

Taika Waititi’s Jojo Rabbit (77% at RT) made $350,000 this weekend in just five theaters. That is the 12th-best opening in as many theaters ever, behind La La Land ($881,104), The Master ($736,311), Brokeback Mountain ($547,425), The Big Sick ($421,577), Zero Dark Thirty ($417,150), Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride ($388,166), Boyhood ($387,618), Syriana ($374,502),and Punch-Drunk Love ($367,203) as well as Woody Allen’s To Rome With Love ($361,359) and Café Society ($359.289). Jojo’s $70,000 per-theater-average is the fourth-best of 2019 behind Avengers: Endgame ($76,601), The Farewell ($88,916) and Bong-Joon Ho’s Parasite ($128,072), which is quite the story.

Parasite (99% Tomatometer score) moved into 33 theaters this weekend (up 30 from last week) and grossed another $1.2 million, a haul that puts it into some big-league conversation. Lady Bird went from four to 37 theaters in its second week and grossed $1.19 million. Boyhood went five to 34 ($1.17 million), The Farewell four to 35 ($1.14 million), and The Favourite four to 34 ($1.07 million). Parasite in 33 theaters even beat the per-theater averages of Juno ( $1.42 million in 40 theaters) and The Royal Tenenbaums ($1.26 million in 40 theaters) in their second weekends of limited release. Parasite has grossed $1.8 million to date, and Neon needs to keep spreading the word.


This Time Last Year: Halloween Cast a Spell Over Moviegoers

Halloween - Ryan Green /Universal Pictures

(Photo by Ryan Green /Universal Pictures)

David Gordon Green’s Halloween fell just a few million shy of besting Venom’s all-time opening record; nevertheless its $76.2 million (now third after Joker) handily led the box office. A Star Is Born finally eclipsed Venom in their third weekends outgrossing the Marvel villain $19.05 to $18.04 million. In limited release, Jonah Hill’s Mid90s had the top per-theater average of the weekend ($64,539) with $258,157 in four theaters. Marielle Heller’s Can You Ever Forgive Me with eventual Oscar nominees, Melissa McCarthy and Richard E. Grant, posted a $32,302 PTA with $161,510 in five theaters. The $155.99 million made by the Top 10 films was the second biggest weekend ever in October, and they averaged 70.1% on the Tomatometer. This year’s Top 10 grossed $128.67 million and averaged 64.7% on the Tomatometer.


On the Vine: Benedict Cumberbatch Leads The Current War

The weekend before Halloween offers different kinds of horror on what looks to be a pretty slow one for the newbies. STX offers the Ring-like Countdown about a killer app that predicts when someone is going to die. Racial angles are explored between corrupt and righteous police officers in Black and Blue with Naomie Harris and Frank Grillo. Then Alfonso Gomez-Rejon’s The Current War finally hits theaters after its debut at the 2017 Toronto Film Festival just before the Weinstein Co. was scuttled. The film charts the battle between Benedict Cumberbatch’s Thomas Edison and Michael Shannon’s George Westinghouse.


The Full Top 10: October 18–20

  1. Maleficent: Mistress of Evil (2019) 39% – $36 million ($36 million total)
  2. Joker (2019) 68% – $29.2 million ($247.22 million total)
  3. Zombieland: Double Tap (2019) 68% – $26.72 million ($26.72 million total)
  4. The Addams Family (2019) 45% – $16.05 million ($56.81 million total)
  5. Gemini Man (2019) 26% – $8.50 million ($36.51 million total)
  6. Abominable (2019) 82% – $3.5 million ($53.91 million total)
  7. Downton Abbey (2019) 84% – $3.08 million ($88.61 million total)
  8. Judy (2019) 82% – $2.055 million ($19.01 million total)
  9. Hustlers (2019) 87% – $2.05 million ($101.87 million total)
  10. It: Chapter Two (2019) 62% – $1.5 million ($209.65 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

foreign talk show Vudu blockbuster Starz sequels comic book movies biography Comic Book Biopics USA Network basketball Baby Yoda game of thrones Box Office science fiction comic book movie FX on Hulu Star Trek Paramount Plus crime drama Shondaland 2015 Nominations Universal natural history ABC concert AMC Plus Spike Academy Awards witnail diversity BBC king arthur Disney Plus 2021 Hallmark independent FOX rt archives sopranos Extras Pop TV See It Skip It Shudder Alien ghosts zero dark thirty free movies versus films slashers Fox News 2018 scary 20th Century Fox rt labs critics edition boxoffice spanish revenge 2017 Masterpiece franchise cancelled TV series 93rd Oscars Creative Arts Emmys Food Network Quiz space strong female leads Christmas kong telelvision Sony Pictures dceu women Holidays Awards ITV Netflix crime thriller aapi Tomatazos football romance finale period drama Musicals live action jamie lee curtis TV One San Diego Comic-Con all-time Stephen King political drama Amazon Prime Video Pixar war Apple TV+ Marvel Columbia Pictures 1990s latino cars Grammys Bravo Calendar halloween tv saw festivals Fox Searchlight renewed TV shows Ovation Television Academy docudrama Comics on TV APB Rom-Com Countdown comedies Paramount social media sports psycho MTV Crackle nature Warner Bros. Ghostbusters politics scary movies toy story child's play NYCC halloween Set visit Tarantino Black History Month The Purge Sundance Now composers art house American Society of Cinematographers fresh international VOD book dc kaiju OWN YA news richard e. Grant 24 frames Comic-Con@Home 2021 psychological thriller indie Pacific Islander doctor who Country game show AMC zombies festival Fall TV Western Freeform Fantasy japanese sag awards New York Comic Con Thanksgiving Summer worst Marvel Studios comiccon PlayStation casting BET Awards aliens Paramount Network DC Comics TLC 71st Emmy Awards Polls and Games PaleyFest Comedy TV renewals robots rom-coms hidden camera green book book adaptation asian-american children's TV cancelled television Disney streaming service travel universal monsters Mystery Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt discovery Disney Channel parents critic resources comic books action-comedy IFC Hear Us Out Britbox lord of the rings Marathons Music 4/20 Lionsgate MSNBC First Reviews OneApp young adult christmas movies First Look Teen TruTV Nickelodeon stop motion dogs biopic Dark Horse Comics Kids & Family Opinion cults monster movies Character Guide animated singing competition dreamworks remakes trailers quibi supernatural screen actors guild Superheroe Watching Series FXX superman Red Carpet golden globes 72 Emmy Awards BET SXSW Universal Pictures DirecTV classics SDCC new star wars movies blaxploitation Winners The Witch stand-up comedy rotten satire 99% television Apple TV Plus Premiere Dates Wes Anderson GoT Lifetime Christmas movies Turner kids debate Arrowverse spider-man Rocky medical drama Valentine's Day Walt Disney Pictures blockbusters dexter superhero Classic Film Amazon The Academy Women's History Month unscripted Rocketman slasher Showtime dramedy Television Critics Association wonder woman vs. high school Emmys Pirates Schedule CNN NBA nbcuniversal rt labs Drama Holiday Black Mirror WarnerMedia spanish language Mindy Kaling romantic comedy south america black legend Podcast criterion Broadway Cosplay DC streaming service Tokyo Olympics Pride Month Chernobyl Elton John 21st Century Fox Sundance 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards screenings based on movie TCA YouTube Red adventure Action know your critic cooking australia Turner Classic Movies Interview critics Amazon Studios archives LGBT Anna Paquin Funimation cats emmy awards cancelled TV shows PBS gangster miniseries a nightmare on elm street rotten movies we love Amazon Prime Comedy Central Reality hispanic heritage month adaptation Toys best live event comic laika marvel cinematic universe IMDb TV 2020 chucky TNT Election E3 movie Superheroes TV harry potter anthology prank Lucasfilm cartoon venice Hulu canceled fast and furious genre scorecard king kong TCA Winter 2020 ABC Family spinoff Marvel Television sitcom joker movies Hallmark Christmas movies Mary Poppins Returns National Geographic CBS boxing documentary Star Wars VH1 El Rey Emmy Nominations Year in Review godzilla TV Land cinemax video Image Comics batman worst movies Neflix Pop teaser Binge Guide new york stoner hist dark Certified Fresh facebook HBO Go Instagram Live james bond police drama Film Festival HBO Travel Channel Brie Larson The CW directors Reality Competition TCM video on demand VICE IFC Films theme song Trivia scene in color Avengers Film Mudbound cancelled Pet Sematary Sci-Fi royal family mockumentary heist movie what to watch CMT 007 TCA Awards razzies Ellie Kemper hispanic sequel tv talk mcc Tumblr BBC One die hard Crunchyroll award winner The Walking Dead Exclusive Video Mary poppins target Discovery Channel BAFTA Family spider-verse Endgame mission: impossible disaster BBC America WGN Disney Epix streaming movies Spectrum Originals nfl serial killer The Walt Disney Company Horror YouTube Premium transformers series historical drama mob Apple TIFF documentaries ABC Signature golden globe awards TV movies vampires History TBS Sneak Peek RT21 Trailer deadpool Logo pirates of the caribbean true crime Heroines RT History ESPN comics Chilling Adventures of Sabrina 90s Song of Ice and Fire GLAAD Writers Guild of America olympics Awards Tour Photos popular crossover zombie name the review canceled TV shows E! 73rd Emmy Awards black comedy Oscars Super Bowl LGBTQ thriller Infographic spain Winter TV breaking bad Esquire elevated horror 2019 President Acorn TV reboot Spring TV cops docuseries spy thriller Video Games CBS All Access Mary Tyler Moore Disney+ Disney Plus twilight FX Peacock adenture Lifetime crime YouTube Trophy Talk binge Legendary 45 SundanceTV suspense ID Syfy GIFs french Cartoon Network toronto DC Universe anime jurassic park The Arrangement hollywood werewolf technology marvel comics NBC Cannes justice league italian feel good Tubi ratings indiana jones Adult Swim Musical Martial Arts USA new zealand streaming mutant X-Men MCU HBO Max japan A&E Captain marvel posters DGA reviews A24 Nat Geo ViacomCBS TCA 2017 Rock Netflix Christmas movies obituary Best and Worst Sundance TV dragons 2016 Animation CW Seed