Elvis and Top Gun: Maverick are in a dead heat for No. 1, with both Warner Bros and Paramount respectively calling each film at $30.5M for the weekend.
If you boil this face-off down to admissions, box office analytics firm EntTelligence is calling the weekend in favor of Top Gun Maverick, with 2.5M admissions to Elvis’ 2.4M admissions.
Industry average weekend estimates show Elvis ahead of Top Gun: Maverick, $30.1M to $29.965M.
Top Gun: Maverick had a slightly lower average ticket price over Elvis, $12.47 to $12.52.
Paramount is calling the 5th weekend for Top Gun: Maverick at -32% dip from weekend 4, after a Saturday night that beat Elvis‘, $12M to $10M.
Warners believes Elvis‘ first Sunday will decline by 23% from Saturday to $7.7M. Paramount is saying Top Gun 2‘s Sunday will be at $10.2M, -15% from Saturday.docto
Still with fierce numbers like this, it’s a rich man’s problem. As one industry marketing executive couched the weekend, “Craziness, but a rising tide to lift all boats for sure.” The top four films grossed over $20M apiece. In addition to Elvis’ opening here and Top Gun 2‘s fifth weekend, Universal is claiming third and fourth place with the third weekend of Jurassic World Dominion at $26.4M and the opening of Blumhouse’s R-rated horror movie The Black Phone, which overperformed to $23.3M. That’s off the backs of the 18-34 crowd, which showed up at 64%; 53% under 25 and 51% female.
The last time that box office feat occurred was over Thanksgiving weekend 2018 (Ralph Breaks the Internet $56.2M, Creed II – $35.5M, The Grinch – $30.3M, Fantastic Beasts 2 – $29.3M) and before that during a non-holiday weekend it was July 21-23, 2017 (Dunkirk – $50.5M, Girls Trip – $31.2M, Spider-Man: Homecoming – $22.1M, and War for the Planet of the Apes – $20.6M).
Big cheer here to Warner Bros. for getting much older out, which in updated Comscore/Screen Engine PostTrak exits is 31% over 55, 48% over 45. Not to mention, Elvis reps a breakthrough at the box office for a long-running time pic at 2 hours and 39 minutes. It’s also been over-written how cautious older women were to return to cinemas during the pandemic. However, Elvis pulled in a huge 45% women over 25 (who gave the pic its highest grade at 92%). The success here with Elvis is that it shows these adult skewing movies can still open on the big screen to very good numbers. Everything that’s non-tentpole doesn’t have to be sent to streaming. Amen.
Warner Bros. Domestic Distribution Boss Jeff Goldstein was over the moon: “Our marketing team went all out. This team was in the field for 30 days straight, on the road. They’re absolutely everywhere, doing surprise and delights in theaters. Baz Luhrmann is a spokesperson to the theatrical experience.”
Luhrmann rallied folks to get out to theater, not just for his film, but all films:
Warner Discovery CEO David Zaslav has much to be proud here with Baz Luhrmann’s $85M production. We hear that outgoing Warner Bros Motion Pictures Group Boss Toby Emmerich was a big champion of Elvis, and the results here are a nice send-off as he transitions to a producer role on the Burbank, CA lot.
Excellent buzz for Elvis to keep it going at 4 1/2 stars, 88% positive, 72% definite recommend on PostTrak, and a Rotten Tomatoes audience score of 94% that beats that of Bohemian Rhapsody (85%), Rocketman (88%), and A Star Is Born (79%). Also indicating word-of-mouth is working is the fact that 63% bought their tickets on Saturday on the same day, per PostTrak. Proof that the older crowd showed up is in the EntTelligence admission shares, which showed 50.9% of moviegoers watching the pic before 5PM.
This was a passion project of Luhrmann’s that defied the odds when the Covid pandemic hit, with Tom Hanks catching the virus “six days from starting principal” and production shutting down for months. Luhrmann took the time to refocus the screenplay, particularly from Hanks’ Colonel Tom Parker pov, and Austin Butler stayed in Australia, where the pic was shot, to work on his Elvis from head to toe during the Covid downtime. Warners world premiered the movie at the Cannes Film Festival last month. That’s where Luhrmann launched his filmmaking career with Strictly Ballroom back in 1992. Elvis received the longest standing ovation at Cannes this year, clocked at ten minutes by Deadline.
What did family audiences think of Disney/Pixar’s Lightyear in weekend 2? Well, it took a 65% tumble ($17.66M), which is arguably the second-worst decline for a Pixar movie after Onward‘s -73% second weekend, which was when the pandemic was roaring up in early March 2020.
Back to Black Phone. Not only did the Blumhouse title have great reviews, but great exits, with 86% positive on PostTrak and 90% on Rotten Tomatoes’ audience poll, to pair with its B+ CinemaScore. Evidence that the younger demos turned out for this movie is in its post 9PM business, which repped 30.9% of admissions yesterday, per EntTelligence, the largest share among the top five movies for that time frame.
Exclaimed Uni Domestic Distribution Chief Jim Orr, “Blumhouse and Scott Derrickson brought Joe Hill’s frightening story to theatres this weekend and terrified audiences across North America. This is a tremendous, well-deserved debut for The Black Phone, and our terrific critical reviews and audience reaction scores point to a very healthy run through the summer.”
There’s really no other genre movies on the calendar like Black Phone until Jordan Peele’s Nope on July 22, and New Line’s Salem’s Lot on Sept. 9. Top markets were LA, NYC, Dallas, Chicago, Houston, Atlanta, San Francisco, Phoenix, Philly, and D.C. At $1.7M over the last two days, LA is a strong market for Black Phone. The pic overperformed on the West Coast, South Central and Northeast regions.
1.) Elvis (WB) 3,906 theaters, Fri $12.8M, Sat $10M, Sun $7.7M, 3-day $30.5M/Wk 1
2.) Top Gun: Maverick (Par) 3,948 (-87) theaters, Fri $8.3M, Sat $12M, Sun $10.2M, 3-day $30.5M (-33%), Total $521.7M/Wk 5
3.) Jurassic World Dominion (Uni) 4,233 (-464) theaters, Fri $7.5M, Sat $10.8M, Sun $8.1M, 3-day $26.44M (-55%)/Total $302.77M/Wk 3
4.) The Black Phone (Uni) 3,150 theaters, Fri $10.2M, Sat $7.5M, Sun $5.6M, 3-day $23.3M/Wk 1
5.) Lightyear (Dis) 4,255 theaters, Fri $5.4M, Sat $6.95M, Sun $5.3M /3-day $17.66M (-65%), Total $88.7M/Wk 2
6.) Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (Dis) 1,855 (-610) theaters, Fri $521k, Sat $704K, Sun $500K, 3-day $1.72M (-61%), Total $409.1M/Wk 8
7.) Jug Jugg Jeeyo (Moviegoer) 318 theaters, Fri $235K, Sat $287K, Sun $203K, 3-day $725K, Wk 1
8.) Everything, Everywhere All at Once (A24) 524 (-155) theaters, Fri $144K, Sat $216K, Sun $173K, 3-day $533K (-44%), Total $66.1M/Wk 14
9.) Bob’s Burgers (20th/Dis) 590 (-760) theaters, Fri $156K, Sat $203K, Sun $154K, 3-day $513K (-56%), Total $31M/Wk 5
10.) The Bad Guys (Uni) 1,033 (-461) theaters, Fri $140K, Sat $170K, Sun $130K 3-day $440K (-56%), Total $95.4M /Wk 10