‘Fatherhood’ Soars at Netflix, ‘Misfits’ Clicks as VOD Premiere

New titles got heavy home viewing this weekend. Two were predictable, while the third is an actioner with a well-known actor in tow.
Kevin Hart and Alfre Woodard in "Fatherhood."

Domestic theaters, now mostly reopen even with five new studio movies in the last three weeks, could only muster a total gross of $45 million this past weekend. That’s less than a quarter of what the same weekend in 2019 took in. That week was dominated by “Toy Story 4.” Disney released the Pixar sequel targeting the Father’s Day audience. That timing only added to an already monster hit that took in $121 million initially, and $434 million domestic all told.

This weekend, two new films were timed to Father’s Day, at least in part. Unfortunately for struggling theaters, neither had them in mind.

“Luca,” Pixar’s latest, debuted on Disney+ free for subscribers (unlike some other recent Premium VOD offerings). No viewership reports have emerged. But the figure might have been in the millions just in the U.S. And with the low end of a Pixar opening this century at $39 million (for “Onward” last year, just before COVID shut down theaters), assume Disney+ play cost theaters tens of millions. (Disney played “Luca” in Hollywood at the El Capitan theater, grossing around $75,000).

Meanwhile, Netflix premiered “Fatherhood” with Kevin Hart. The comedy/drama about a single dad was originally set for theatrical play by Sony. As with “The Mitchells vs. the Machines” and “Wish Dragon,” the streamer is thriving with films the studio sold to them rather than risk the iffy state of exhibition.

Directed by Paul Weitz (“Little Fockers” series, “About a Boy” among his hits), this could have been a strong #2 in theaters this weekend. Grosses are not at 100 percent yet, but these two titles might easily have grossed, combined, more than the entire total this weekend.

The other VOD results vary little from last week’s, though with a breakout new entry and shifts based on price reductions. Premium entries overall dominate all charts, irrespective of whether they tally by rentals or revenues.

The Misfits

The exception is a newbie is from another established studio director, in this case Renny Harlin (“Die Hard 2,” “Cliffhanger”). “The Misfits” (Avenue/$6.99) is a Middle Eastern-financed “Oceans Eleven”-type caper with Pierce Brosnan and Nick Cannon, filmed in the United Arab Emirates. Reviews have not been kind, but at standard $6.99 price, audiences have responded. “Misfits” has been #1 most of the week at iTunes, and is the highest ranked non-Premium VOD title at FandangoNow and Vudu.

Otherwise PVOD, mostly from established theater titles, reigns. “Wrath of Man” (United Artists/$19.99) took the top spot at both at Google Play and and FandangoNow. “Godzilla vs. Kong” (Warner Bros./$19.99) benefited from a newly reduced price after starting at $29.99.

Those two were joined by three other titles making all four lists. Both “Nobody” (Universal/$19.99) and “Mortal Kombat” (Warner Bros./$24.99) are also PVOD. “Raya and the Last Dragon” (Disney/$5.99) is surging with a price reduction.

The other new title to pop up was “The Birthday Cake” (Screen Media/$6.99) showing up at iTunes. Shiloh Fernandez stars as a mob boss’ nephew (with Val Kilmer in the older role) who gets caught up in a gang hit.

Similar to the original “A Quiet Place,” “The Hitman’s Bodyguard” (Lionsgate/$3.99) has gained traction with its sequel’s theatrical release. It showed up in three places, as high as #2 at iTunes. Curiously, there are so far no signs of a similar push on “Fast and Furious” titles ahead of the release of “F9” this week.

Netflix, apart from “Fatherhood,” has its usual curiosities. “Security,” an Italian-language adaptation of an American novel about a rape accusation in a close-knit town, is directed by Peter Chelsom. This is a change of pace for the British director who rode the Miramax wave (“Hear My Song, “The Mighty,” “Shall We Dance”) along with the later “Hector and the Search for Happiness.” It ranks third at the moment.

The streamer’s international theme continues with “Rurouni Kenshin:The Final,” the conclusion of a series of manga live-action adaptations. Made in Japan, the film had a theatrical run there earlier this year, with $31 million in gross. It placed #5.

Apple TV/iTunes and Google Play rank films daily by number of transactions, irrespective of revenue accrued. These are the listings for Monday, June 21.

Apple TV/iTunes

1. The Misfits (Avenue) – $6.99

2. The Hitman’s Bodyguard (Lionsgate) – $3.99

3. Nobody (Universal) – $19.99

4. Wrath of Man (United Artists) – $19.99

5. Godzilla vs. Kong (Warner Bros.) – $19.99

6. Raya and the Last Dragon (Disney) – $5.99

7. The Marksman (Open Road) – $19.99

8. The Dry (IFC) – $6.99

9. The Birthday Cake (Screen Media) – $6.99

10. Mortal Kombat (Warner Bros.) – $24.99

Google Play

1. Wrath of Man (United Artists) – $19.99

2. Godzilla vs. Kong (Warner Bros.) – $19.99

3. A Quiet Place (Paramount) – $2.99

4. Nobody (Universal) – $19.99

5. Mortal Kombat (Warner Bros.) – $24.99

6. The Marksman (Open Road) – $5.99

7. Raya and the Last Dragon (Disney) – $5.99

8. The Hitman’s Bodyguard (Lionsgate) – $3.99

9. Spiral: From the Book of Saw (Lionsgate) – $19.99

10. Tom & Jerry (Warner Bros.) – $5.99

Cameron Jack as Brendan, Darrell D'Silva as Mike, Jason Statham as H, and Babs Olusanmokun as Moggy in director Guy Ritchie's WRATH OF MAN, A Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures film.Photo credit: Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures© 2021 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Inc. All Rights Reserved
“Wrath of Man”Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures

FandangoNow and Vudu rank by revenue earned, not transactions, which elevates Premium VOD titles. These listings cover June 14-20.


1. Wrath of Man (United Artists) – $19.99

2. Godzilla vs. Kong (Warner Bros.) – $19.99

3. Spiral: From the Book of Saw (Lionsgate) – $19.99

4. Nobody (Universal) – $19.99

5. The Misfits (Avenue) – $6.99

6. Mortal Kombat (Warner Bros.) – $24.99

7. Queen Bees (Gravitas Ventures) – $19.99

8. Dream Horse (Bleecker Street) – $19.99

9. Raya and the Last Dragon (Disney) – $5.99

10. Rogue Hostage (Vertical) – $6.99


1. Godzilla vs. Kong (Warner Bros.) – $29.99

2. Nobody (Universal) – $19.99

3. Wrath of Man (United Artists) – $19.99

4. Mortal Kombat (Warner Bros.) – $24.99

5. Spiral: From the Book of Saw (Lionsgate) – $19.99

6. The Misfits (Avenue) – $6.99

7. Raya and the Last Dragon (Disney) – $5.99

8. The Hitman’s Bodyguard (Lionsgate) – $3.99

9. Rogue Hostage (Vertical) – $6.99

10. Voyagers (Lionsgate) – $5.99

Netflix Movies

Most viewed, current ranking as of Monday, June 21; originals include both Netflix-produced and Netflix-acquired titles.

1. Fatherhood (2021 Netflix original)

2. Wish Dragon (2021 Netflix Chinese animated original)

3. Security (2021 Netflix Italian original)

4. Home (2015 animated theatrical release)

5. Rurouni Kenshin: The Final (2021 Netflix Japanese original)

6. Unwind Your Mind (2021 Netflix original documentary/animation short)

7. The Devil Below (2021 Video on Demand release)

8. Awake (2021 Netflix original)

9. Dog Gone Trouble (2021 Netflix animated original)

10. The Mitchells vs. the Machines (2021 Netflix animated original)

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