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Disney Takes Top Two Box Office Spots in Dismal Top Ten

After a dismal weekend, theaters have to hope "The Woman King" and "Bros," both strong in Toronto, will help soon.

Georgina Campbell as Tess in 20th Century Studios' BARBARIAN, exclusively on Hulu. Photo courtesy of 20th Century Studios. © 2022 20th Century Studios. All Rights Reserved.

“Barbarian”

Courtesy of 20th Century Studios

Disney has both the #1 and #2 film this weekend, exactly one year after last achieving that. Sony did it two weeks ago with “The Invitation” and “Bullet Train,” but it is something the House of Mouse did regularly in years when they were the dominant studio for theatrical releases.

Their lead this weekend is more of a default situation than last September when holdover weekends of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” and “Free Guy” held the top two spots. The latter was a Fox-produced title distributed by Disney. This year, both “Barbarian” (also out of Fox) and “Brahmastra Part 1: Shiva” (from Fox Star India) placed as two titles that might not normally be associated with the Burbank studio.

This is likely to be the rock bottom weekend, possibly for years to come. Total grosses amounted to $43 million, second worst for 2022 (1/28-30 lower). That’s only 31 percent of 2019’s post-Labor Day weekend gross. Even worse, it’s down substantially from last year’s $61 million — one of the rare times box office has fallen below 2021.

The miserable total lowers our ongoing four-week rolling comparison to 2019 to 49 percent. That’s the first time it has dropped below 50 percent in six months.

Lack of prime new films, of course, is the reason. That makes the good reactions to “The Woman King” (Sony, 9/16) and “Bros” (Universal, 9/30) at Toronto, along with clear interest in “Don’t Worry Darling” (WBD, 9/23) vital.

“Barbarian” is a low-budget (amount uncertain) horror film about a vacation rental gone bad, with a near-best 80 Metacritic score among wide releases countered by an awful C- Cinemascore response. The result? Unlike most genre titles, its Saturday gross improved on Friday (which included preview numbers), which suggests an actual decent audience response. Its $10 million total met expectations.

A gray-haired older man in glasses, grabs a younger man in a grey long-sleeve by the arms, while a woman with long brown wavy hair wearing a black dress watches between them; still from "Brahmastra."

“Brahmastra Part One: Shiva.”

Photo courtesy of Star India Pvt. Ltd., Dharma Productions

#2 “Brahmastra Part One: Shiva,” a contemporary adventure/fantasy, comes from Disney’s Fox Star Indian unit. In 810 theaters, it did $4.4 million, with a PTA of $5,432 compared to half of the Top Ten that fell short of $1,000. This is below “RRR” (Sarigama), which opened to $9,500,000 in 1,200 theaters last March, but is the first time an Indian film has been #2 (“RRR” placed third).

“Lifeforce” (Fathom), an anti-abortion faith-based film with a cast including Kirk Cameron, ranked #7 with $2,212,000 in 1,531 theaters. Holdovers for once didn’t shine. Nothing dropped less than 40 percent, and “Top Gun: Maverick” (Paramount) wasn’t the top hold for once. It had the biggest boost last weekend from the $3 Saturday event, and also is settled in as a PVOD entry (one of five in the Top Ten).

The Top 10

1. Barbarian (Disney) NEW – Cinemascore: C+; Metacritic: 80

$10,000,000 in 2,340 theaters; PTA (per screen average): $4,274; Cumulative: $10,000,000

2. Brahmastra Part 1: Shiva (Disney) NEW – Metacritic: 57; Est. budget: $5 million

$4,400,000 in 810 theaters; PTA: $5,432; Cumulative: $4,400,000

3. Bullet Train (Sony) Week 5; Last weekend #2

$3,250,000 (-44%) in 3,117 (-61) theaters; PTA: $1,063; Cumulative: $92,544,000

4. Top Gun: Maverick (Paramount) Week 16; Last weekend #1; also on PVOD

$3,170,000 (-47%) in 3,005 (-108) theaters; PTA: $1,055; Cumulative: $705,650,000

5. DC League of Super-Pets (WBD) Week 7; Last weekend #4; also on PVOD

$2,835,000 (-44%) in 3,043 (-72)  theaters; PTA: $932; Cumulative: $85,421,000

6. The Invitation (Sony) Week 3; Last weekend: #5

$2,620,000 (-46%) in 3,117 (+3) theaters; PTA: $841; Cumulative: $18,846,000

7. Lifemark (Fathom) NEW

$2,212,000 in 1,531 theaters; PTA: $1,445; Cumulative: $2,212,000

8. Beast (Universal) Week 4; Last weekend #3; also on PVOD

$1,800,000 (-55%) in 2,793 (-424) theaters; PTA: $644; Cumulative: $29,376,000

9. Minions: The Rise of Gru (Universal) Week 11; Last weekend #7; also on PVOD

$1,650,000$ (-53%) in 2,274 (-183) theaters; PTA: $726; Cumulative: $362,331,000

10. Spider-Man: No Way Home (Sony) (reissue); Last weekend #3; also on VOD

$1,300,000 (-76%) in 3,215 (-720) theaters; PTA: $404; Cumulative: $813,349,000

Vicky Krieps in "Hold Me Tight"

Vicky Krieps in “Hold Me Tight”

 

Additional specialized/limited/independent releases

Medieval (The Avenue) NEW – Metacritic: 49

$810,000 in 1,311 theaters;  PTA: $618

Hold Me Tight (Kino Lorber) NEW – Metacritic: 80; Festivals include: Cannes 2021

$15,051 in 5 theaters; PTA: $3,010

Hockeyland (Greenwich) NEW –  Festivals include: Doc NYC 2022

$49,500 in 64 theaters; PTA: $773

Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul (Focus) – Week 2; also on Peacock

$365,000 in 1,870 (-12) theaters; PTA: $; Cumulative: $2,399,000

Gigi & Nate (Roadside Attractions) – Week 2    1184

$341,765 in 1,220 theaters; PTA: $280; Cumulative: $1,894,000

Breaking (Bleecker Street) Week 3

$225,754 in 616 (-293) theaters;  Cumulative: $2,646,000

The Good Boss (Cohen) Week 3

$90,041 in 175 theaters; Cumulative: $290,079

Orphan: First Kill (Paramount) Week 4; also on PVOD and Paramount Plus

$300,000 in 428 (-101) theaters;  Cumulative: $5,083,000

Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris (Focus) Week 8; also on PVOD

$112,000 in 341 (+74); Cumulative: $10,167,000

Hallelujah: Leonard Cohen, a Journey, a Song (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 9

$23,583 in 73 (-11) theaters; Cumulative: $983,892

 

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