As expected, “Furious 7” (Universal) led a lackluster Friday. Its $8.3 million haul bested two new wide releases, both topping expectations. Kevin James’ “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2” (Sony) overcame scathing reviews to place a close second at $7.3 million, while Universal’s low-budget horror acquisition “Unfriended” was just behind in third at $6.8 million.
The three films dominated the Top Ten total of just under $34 million, down from a Good Friday-boosted $46 last year. The disconcerting news is that all but one of last weekend’s six best films dropped over fifty per cent from last Friday, including 56 per cent for “Furious 7,” though at $210 million so far it remains a major success.
The third wide opener, “Monkey Kingdom” (Buena Vista), the latest Disney animal-related documentary, placed fourth with $1,550,000. Their similar “Bear” one year ago had a first-day gross of $2.3 million in 200+ fewer theaters, much better. Two other sub-1,000 theater national releases also showed little traction. Despite James Franco and Jonas Hill’s presence, “True Story” (Fox Searchlight) managed only $685,000 in 831 theaters. Even getting less attention, the Russian-set serial killer thriller “Child 44” (Lionsgate) starring Tom Hardy and Gary Oldman managed only $230,000 in 431 theaters.
“Home” (20th Century Fox) placed fourth with just over $2.4 million, just ahead of the second Friday for “The Longest Ride” (20th Century Fox) in fifth at $2.4.. “Get Hard” (Warner Bros.) continues to show strength, in seventh with $1.4 million, dropping under fifty per cent.
Weinstein added over 500 screens to “The Woman in Gold,” helping to minimize its drop. It placed eighth with $1,345,000. Rounding up the list are “Insurgent” (Lionsgate) with $1.2 million and “Cinderella” (Buena Vista) at $1.1.