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Box Office ‘Beasts’ Are Not Fantastic, but the Weekend Totaled Over $100M

Good news: With "Morbius," "Sonic the Hedgehog 2," and "The Lost City," this weekend was on par with 2019 — a rarity since theaters reopened.

A photo of the cast from "Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore"

“Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore”

Warner Bros.

Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore” (Warner Bros.) fell short of its two prior entries with a $43 million weekend, but this weekend it was the biggest contributor to an estimate $110 million total domestic gross — on par with the same weekend three years ago, a rarity since theaters reopened.

From a franchise perspective, “Dumbledore” is a disappointment. Going into April, it joined “Morbius” (Sony) and “Sonic the Hedgehog 2” (Paramount) as one of three films this month that could open over $50 million. The J.K. Rowling adaptation seemed like a particularly strong candidate; not only did its predecessors open to $74 million and $62 million, but it also nabbed the potentially lucrative Easter weekend.

Like “Morbius,” it failed to reach that mark — but since “Sonic” beat projections with a $72 million start, the three films combined grossed over $150 million on their openings. This weekend take improves our four-week rolling comparison to the same dates in 2019 to 73 percent.

The film is performing better overseas, but “Dumbledore” sets itself apart with reported production costs of over $200 million. (“Morbius” and “Sonic” are each under $100 million.) With marketing, even $400 million worldwide would represent a loss for Warner Bros. Discovery, the first release under the newly configured company.

Competition may have been a factor, with “Dumbledore” and “Sonic” competing for family audiences. The live-action/animated video game sequel did fall a little more than similar sequels with a 58 percent drop, but scoring $30 million in the second weekend remains impressive.

This weekend also reflected weak interest in “Morbius” in its third weekend for #6 and a for Mark Wahlberg’s faith-based passion project “Father Stu” (Sony) with $8 million in five days. Both convey the feast-or-famine nature of current business.

The Lost City

“The Lost City”

Paramount

Two titles are outperforming expectations. At #3 is “The Lost City” (Paramount) in its fourth week, down only 28 percent at $6.5 million for $78.6 total. It will outgross “Morbius,” a Marvel title that initially seemed like a $100 million sure thing. “The Lost City” represents a boost for both standalone films and for comedies.

In fourth place is “Everything Everywhere All at Once” (A24). Now in 2,220 theaters, it added more than $6 million for a $16.7 million total. It’s a sign of the times that Michael Bay’s “Ambulance” (Universal), despite an A- Cinemascore and decent reviews, failed to rebound from its feeble opening. It dropped 54 percent in weekend two, and will end up lower than “Everything.” It could see a better pulse when it hits expected PVOD play in a little over a week.

For the first time in two years, this weekend’s top 10 is the first without titles also having simultaneous home play. “The Batman” (Warner Bros.), now #8 and reaching $750 million worldwide (and $365 million domestic) goes on HBO Max and PVOD tomorrow after 45 days.

At #9 is “K.F.G. Chapter 2,” an Indian film with two domestic distributors, Viva and Sia. The latter distributes it in the original Kannada language; Viva handles it in Hindi. Combined, it has done $4.6 million in five days.

The Top 10

1. Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore (Warner Bros.) NEW – Cinemascore: B+; Metacritic: 47; Est. budget: $200 million

$43,000,000 in 4,208 theaters; PTA: $10,218,000; Cumulative: $43,000,000

2. Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Paramount) Week 2; Last weekend #1

$30,000,000 (-58%) in 4,258 (+24) theaters; PTA: $7,046; Cumulative: $119,612,000

3. The Lost City (Paramount) Week 4; Last weekend #3

$6,500,000 (-28%) in 3,430 (-367) theaters; PTA: $1,895; Cumulative: $78,576,000

4. Everything Everywhere All at Once (A24) Week 4; Last weekend #6

$6,160,000 (+2%) in 2,220 (+970) theaters; PTA: $2,787; Cumulative: $17,696,000

5. Father Stu (Sony) NEW – Cinemascore: A; Metacritic: 42

$5,700,000 in  2,705 theaters; PTA: $2,107; Cumulative: $8,027,000

6. Morbius (Sony) Week 3; Last weekend #2

$4,700,000 (-54%) in 3,462 (-806) theaters; PTA: $1,358; Cumulative: $65,118,000

7. Ambulance (Universal) Week 2; Last weekend #4

$4,040,000 (-54%) in 3,412 (no change) theaters; PTA: $1,184; Cumulative: $15,649,000

8. The Batman (Warner Bros.) Week; Last weekend #5

$3,800,000 (-41%) in 2,535 (-719) theaters; PTA: $1,499; Cumulative: $365,035,000

9. K.F.G. Chapter 2 (Viva/Hindi-language version, Sia/Kannada-language version) NEW

$(est.) 2,900,000 in 810 theaters; PTA: $3,457; Cumulative: $(est.) $4,600,000

10. Uncharted (Sony) Week 9; Last weekend #7

$1,170,000 (-56%) in 1,311 (-1,007) theaters; PTA: $892; Cumulative: $144,986,000

Additional specialized/limited/independent releases 

Paris, 13th District (IFC) – Metacritic: 76; Festivals include: Cannes 2021; also on VOD

$28,000 in 67 theaters; PTA: $418

The Tale of King Crab (Oscilloscope) – Metacritic: 77; Festivals include: Cannes, New York 2021

$5,120 in 1 theater; PTA: $5,120

We’re All Going to the World’s Fair (Utopia) – Metacritic: 76; Festivals include: Sundance 2021, New Directors/New Films 2021

$13,665 in 3 theaters; PTA: $4,555

Dual (RLJE) – Metacritic: 62; Festivals include: Sundance 2022; also on VOD

$125,000 in 157 theaters; PTA: $796

Aline (Roadside Attractions) Week 2

$9,255 in70 (+9) theaters; PTA: $132; Cumulative: $648,892

Mothering Sunday (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 4

$37,098 in 139 (-154) theaters;  Cumulative: $213,504

The Automat (Slice of Pie) –  Week 9

$8,581 in 17 (no change) theaters; Cumulative: $165,468

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