'Solo' Opens Big, But Small for Star Wars; Women-Led Films Dominate

Box Office

‘Solo’ Opens Big, But Small for Star Wars

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Solo: A Star Wars Story opened to number one at the box office with $84.4 million domestically. While that would be incredible news for most movies, it represents the lowest opening weekend gross for a live action Star Wars movie since 2002 with the release of Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones. Adjusting for inflation puts Solo’s opening below Episode II and Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. Episode I launched to $64.8 million unadjusted in 1999 while Episode II opened to $80.0 million.

Solo still has the fourth best launch of 2018 behind Avengers: Infinity War ($257.6m), Black Panther ($202.0m) and Deadpool 2 ($125.5m).

Solo earned about $18.5 million on Memorial Day to bring its domestic total to $103.0 million. That four day total is the seventh best for Memorial Day weekend unadjusted for inflation. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End still ranks first with a $139.8 million gross from 2007.

Solo has also taken in an estimated $69.6 million from foreign territories this weekend for a $172.6 million total. The movie cost over $250 million to make, according to Variety.

No other movies opened wide this week against Star Wars. Last week’s champion, Deadpool 2, took the hardest plunge for any wide release movie this weekend. The movie dropped 65.4% in its second weekend to gross $43.4 million. At $218.5 million in 11 days, the sequel is pacing about 9.4% behind the first movie domestically. Still, Deadpool 2 has grossed $497.6 million so far on a $110 million budget.

Avengers: Infinity War dropped 41.3% against Solo for a $17.2 million weekend. The superhero spectacle has now topped the first Avengers movie and Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi to become the sixth highest grossing movie ever domestically at $626.4 million. Infinity War is outpacing everything ahead but Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, which took in $858.9 million through the same time. However, Avatar was pulling in $42.4 million on this same weekend and Black Panther was grossing $26.6 million. Infinity War might have to settle for a fourth place finish domestically.

The movie has taken in over $1.2 billion from foreign markets to bring its box office total over $1.91 billion. It still remains the fourth highest grossing movie ever with Star Wars: The Force Awakens in third with a little over $2.06 billion.

The ladies of the multiplex remained steady and barely lost any traction against the male-dominated superhero films. Book Club, Life of the Party, Breaking In, Overboard and A Quiet Place all dropped less than 40% this weekend.

Book Club took in $10.0 million (-25.8%). Its domestic total is now $32.2 million and hasn’t begun releasing in foreign territories yet. Forbes said the movie only cost $10 million to make.

In fifth place, Melissa McCarthy’s Life of the Party grossed $5.3 million (-29.3%) to bring its domestic total to $40.8 million. The Oscar-nominated comedienne’s latest is pacing about 18.5% behind The Boss, 40.8% behind Tammy and 46.4% behind Spy through this time. Factoring in foreign territories brings Life of the Party’s total to $48.4 million. Forbes puts the budget at $30 million. Breaking In starring Gabrielle Union placed sixth and made $4.2 million (-37.2%). The $6 million thriller has now grossed $39.1 million worldwide.

Show Dogs starring Will Arnett followed suit with $3.2 million (-45.8%). Distributor Global Road Entertainment said to Deadline that the movie had to be re-edited after controversy surrounding a scene with a dog that made light of a technique used in child grooming. That controversy didn’t prove too detrimental to its box office. Its box office total is now $13.1 million worldwide. The movie was made for £4.7 million (currently about $6.23 million), according to BusinessWales.gov. However, that does not cover what could be tens of millions in marketing.

The Overboard remake with Eugenio Derbez and Anna Faris grossed $3.1 million (-32.3%) to bring its worldwide total to $54.6 million. Variety said the budget was only $12 million. The John Krasinski-directed A Quiet Place starring himself and Emily Blunt brought in an extra $2.4 million (-38.3%). It has now grossed $180.8 million domestically, which is currently the fourth biggest movie of 2018 under Black Panther ($689.7m), Infinity War ($627.6m) and Deadpool 2 ($218.5m). The movie has now grossed $312.5 million worldwide on a budget of $17 million.

Finally, RBG, the documentary on Associate Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg cracked the top ten with $1.2 million (+2.8%). The movie only added 40 theaters to bring its total to 415. Its box office total is now $6.2 million. As for documentaries in 2017, only the Disney panda movie Born in China ($13.8m) and the movie on racism in the United States from the view of a manuscript from novelist and social critic James Baldwin called I Am Not Your Negro ($7.1 million) made that much money.

Next week sees the release of Adrift starring Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin, Action Point starring Johnny Knoxville and Upgrade from Saw and Insidious writer/star Leigh Whannell.

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