Pixar took the top spot on a hesitant box office weekend.
Amidst trepidation, taking the box office’s temperature this weekend reveals inconclusive results. Pixar’s Onward carried the day, but took in less money than expected. Fellow wide releases saw better-than-projected results. The historical numbers are all over the place, so we’ll try to break down the figures in light of the looming coronavirus outbreak.
This Week in Box Office History.
The domestic box office was actually up modestly, adding 3%. That stops a February slide that saw a drop of 35% in mid February and another drop of 5% at the end of the month.
The year-to-year comparison is scarier: compared to 2019, the box shed 52% of its earnings. Unfortunately for analysis, the numbers are confounding.
While the box office has taken some big slides, we’re only pacing behind 2019 by 2%. Now Q1 last year was really weak – we’re actually beating that spread in 2020 in a year-to-date comparison. There wasn’t any pandemic fears to depress sales last year, so this may just be emblematic of the new normal for the beginning of the year.
At least for now, it looks like soft earnings may reflect an overall slow period, instead of audiences socially distancing themselves from theaters.
Top Film One Year Ago: Captain Marvel.
Top Film Ten Years Ago: Alice in Wonderland.
Top Film 40 Years Ago: Kramer Vs. Kramer.
Top Three Films.
Onward took a magical road trip through the box office, hauling in 40 million dollars. This is below early estimates, but not disastrously so. It puts Onward in the same tier as other Pixar one-offs such as The Good Dinosaur (39m), Ratatouille (47m), and Coco (50m).
The Invisible Man dropped down to second place, disappearing another 15 million dollars for a US take of 52 million. Not bad for a 7 million dollar budget. In other good news, the film has taken in 48 million dollars abroad. This is both a great total, and nearly double what Onward opened with abroad.
In third, the Way Back, starring Ben Affleck, took in just under 9 million dollars in the US. That’s right around early estimates, though a touch shaky when compared to a budget of 20-25 million dollars.
Emma, expanding nationally, shot up from number 13 to number 6. It added just under 5 million dollars to its earlier limited release take of just under 2 million dollars.
Speak of limited release, India’s Baaghi 3 opened to half a million dollars. That’s really solid for a per-screen take, but about 150 thousand less than its predecessor, Baaghi 2. It wound up in 17th place, showing on 265 screens.
Top Ten Films.
- Onward (39.1)
- The Invisible Man (15.1)
- The Way Back (8.1)
- Sonic the Hedgehog (7.7)
- The Call of the Wild (6.7)
- Emma (4.8)
- Bad Boys for Life (3.0)
- Birds of Prey (2.1)
- Impractical Jokers: The Movie (1.8)
- My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising (1.7)