Box Office Wrap Up: LEGO 2 Missing Pieces.
The box office rebounded, but the LEGO Movie 2 failed to build upon the original’s success.
Box Office sales took one step forward and two steps back this week. Good news: revenue finally cracked 100 million after a three week slump. Bad news: revenue was still the third weakest tally for this weekend in a decade. Worse news (if you’re Warner Brothers): the LEGO franchise’s steady decline has become abundantly clear as The LEGO Movie 2 made less than half of what the original did.
This Week in Box Office History.
The box office snapped back, adding 53% in sales compared to last week. That still left it 20% behind last year’s earnings for the same weekend. Many of the new releases, of which four new titles were added, failed to meet expectations. The Prodigy and What Men Want were down by just a few million. The LEGO Movie 2 kicked over the toy box by underperforming 20-25 million less than forecasted. That sum made all the difference: add 20 million to the box and we draw even with 2018’s numbers.
Top Film Last Year: Fifty Shades Freed.
Top Film Last Decade: He’s Just Not That Into You.
The LEGO Movie 2 came in for a rough landing at the top spot. It made 34 million dollars against a 99 million dollar budget. This is less than half of what the first movie made (69 million). One factor to the film’s rocky start is franchise fatigue. LEGO Batman made nearly 20 million dollars less than the first LEGO Movie, and LEGO 2 made nearly 20 million less than Batman. The slope of that line is decidedly downward*.
*But what about the LEGO Ninjago movie? It only made 20 million, so LEGO 2 is a bounce-back, right? Nope. Ninjago didn’t share any of the cast of the main franchise and came out in a different part of the year. Each of the main movies hit in early February. It’s pretty clearly an outlier.
The second factor affecting LEGO 2 is the soft box office. Even if it had made the 50+ million it was predicted to reach, we still have the fourth softest box office for this weekend instead of the third weakest. Following three weeks of awful numbers, it was pretty much a given that it would underperform at least a little. People are just not going to the movies lately.
What Men Want raked in 19 million dollars for a second place finish. That was a little below forecasts, but against a 20 million dollar budget, I’m sure Taraji P. Henson and Paramount Studios are thrilled with those numbers. Especially in such a inhospitable box office landscape.
Third Place saw Cold Pursuit shovel in 10 million dollars. That’s down a bit from non-Taken Liam Neeson thrillers, but only modestly so. The problem is that the film is dragging around a reported 60 million dollar budget. The film is a remake of a Norwegian cult classic, so may have legs abroad. It’s going to need a very special set of skills if it hopes to recoup that sky-high budget.
Horror film The Prodigy was the last new release of the weekend. It came in at sixth place with 6 million dollars, against a 6 million dollar budget. Huh. 666. I’m sure that’s just a coincidence.
Top Ten Films.
1. The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part (34.4)
2. What Men Want (19.0)
3. Cold Pursuit (10.8)
4. The Upside (7.2)
5. Glass (6.4)
6. The Prodigy (6.0)
7. Green Book (3.5)
8. Aquaman (3.3)
9. Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse (3.0)
10. Miss Bala (2.7)