Box Office Wrap Up: Toys in the Attic.
The sequel bug bit Toy Story 4, though it carried first place and several franchise milestones.
Toy Story 4 reversed the slumping June box office, but had some of the wind taken out of its sales by the trend of disappointing sequel returns. Despite not living up to optimistic projections, Pixar’s final entry in the Toy Story franchise left on a high note. Another toy themed film, Child’s Play, also got stung by less than projected earnings, but likewise had a franchise leading outing. For the overall box office, the inability of a string of high-profile sequels to perform under pressure has hampered the rally begun by a high-performing May box office.
This Week in Box Office History.
The total take for this week was up 45% from last week, but down 29% from last year. Toy Story led the charge, but was unable to match the openings from either Finding Dory (135 million) or The Incredibles 2 (182 million). As we’ll see, it wasn’t all bad news for Pixar’s latest feature, but it fell well short of the projected 165 million dollar opening. Coupled with the similar under-performance of fellow wide release films, Child’s Play and Anna, and the picture gets dicier. Last week’s top two films both fell by roughly 60%. The lack of sustained production from the big tent-pole films has led to an increasingly fragile box office.
While Summer 2019 was putting up record numbers in May, June has erased those gains. We now trail 2018 by 2.5%, which is worrying since 2018 was a fairly lousy summer for ticket sales. The gap between the year-to-date has also started to widen again, up to 9% now.
Top Film Last Year: Jurassic World 2.
Top Film Last Decade: The Proposal.
Top Three Films.
Toy Story 4 rode off into the sunset with a first place debut. The final outing for Woodie and Buzz took in 118 million dollars domestically. As discussed, it was less than early estimates. It was, however, the best outing for the franchise, passing Toy Story 3’s premier of 110 million dollars. It is also Pixar’s third largest debut, falling in line just behind Finding Dory, and well behind Incredibles 2. Toy Story 4 garnered nearly fantastic critical scores across the board, so it should have a strong run at the box office.
The reboot of Child’s Play slashed up second place. The first of three creepy doll movies hitting the box office in rapid succession, it under-performed early estimates too. The final take domestically was 14 million dollars, another franchise best. It passed Child’s Play 2 at 10 million dollars, and nearly doubled up the original 1988 Child’s Play, which made just over 6 million dollars. The critical reception was a passing grade, with fans more excited about the latest outing for Chucky than critics.
In third place, Aladdin continues to fill its cave of treasures. The Disney live-action remake inches towards 300 million dollars domestically, and already has soared to 800 million dollars worldwide.
The third wide release film, Luc Besson’s latest lady assassin flick Anna, fell out of the top ten. It took in only 3.5 million dollars in wide release, making it the 40th worst opening in that category. Compare that to 2014’s hit Lucy, which made 35 million dollars for Besson at launch. Between this and Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, it’s been a rough patch for Luc.