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Weekend Estimates: Doctor Strange’s $85 Million Gives Industry a Much-Needed Boost

November 6th, 2016

Doctor Strange

After a couple of months of weak box office, and some very disappointing openings, Doctor Strange, Trolls and Hacksaw Ridge are each, in their own way, putting things back on track. Doctor Strange is grabbing the headlines of course, with an impressive $84,989,000 opening projected by Disney on Sunday morning. That’s almost identical to the opening weekend enjoyed by Thor: The Dark World on this weekend back in 2013, and comes without the benefit of being part of an established franchise (putting aside its place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe).

Strange’s weekend is the third-best franchise-starter for Marvel, behind Iron Man’s $102 million, and Guardians of the Galaxy’s $94 million. Excellent reviews and an A CinemaScore put it on a path to $250 million domestically, with $300 million a possibility if it can keep its place in theaters through Christmas. The performance of The Dark World is a cautionary tale though: after opening with $86 million, it was shedding theaters by Thanksgiving and ended with $206 million in North America. Guardians of the Galaxy finished with $333 million, which puts a optimistic cap on Doctor Strange’s performance of $300 million.

Doctor Strange is doing notably well in 3D, with RealD reporting this morning that 47% of its domestic revenue and 45% of its international revenue is coming from 3D screenings. The international figure is boosted by some exceptionally high numbers in a few markets: 100% of screenings in China are 3D, for example, and other countries with substantial 3D box office include Germany (89%), Brazil (80%), Russia (68%), and France (39%). It also earned $24.2 million in global IMAX revenue from 1,001 screens in 66 markets. It’s the first film ever to play in over 1,000 IMAX theaters in a single weekend, and breaks the November IMAX weekend record formerly held by Interstellar.

The film earned $118.7 million this weekend internationally, and will have accumulated $240.4 million overseas by the end of the weekend, according to the studio, for a global total of $325.4 million. Its biggest territories so far are China ($44.4m), South Korea ($30.4m), and the United Kingdom ($18.9m).

Also of note for Disney this weekend: Finding Dory has reached $1.024 billion globally, overtaking Zootopia (now at $1.0237 billion) to become the second-highest grossing film of 2016 worldwide. Disney’s Captain America: Civil War remains the champ with $1.151 billion.

Back home, Trolls’ solid $45.6 million opening weekend is a welcome sign of some broader activity in the market. That’s a better opening weekend than those enjoyed by Kung Fu Panda 3 ($41.3 million) and The Angry Birds Movie ($38.1 million) earlier in the year, and comes far ahead of Storks and Ice Age: Collision Course, both of which opened with around $21 million. While it’s slightly disappointing in the sense that coming into the weekend it was tracking a little ahead of Home, which opened with $52 million, it’s a marked improvement for Fox, which hasn’t had much to crow about since Deadpool came out in February.

Hacksaw Ridge is similarly good news for Lionsgate. Although it is unlikely to overtake Boo! A Madea Halloween (now at $65 million) to become the studio’s best performer of the year, it comes of the back of a string of $100 million-plus-budget misses: The Divergent Series: Allegiant, Now You See Me 2, Deepwater Horizon, and Gods of Egypt. Hacksaw Ridge’s $14.75 million opening on a $40 million production budget looks like riches in comparison to those four duds.

In limited release this weekend, three films reporting so far have cracked $10,000 per theater. Loving is coming out on top with $169,000 from four locations; Moonlight continues its impressive run with $1.33 million from just 83 theaters, and $3.1 million to date; and The Eagle Huntress is making a pleasing debut with $54,000 or so from four theaters.

- Weekend estimates

- Doctor Strange comparison chart
- Marvel Cinematic Universe at the box office
- Trolls comparison chart
- Hacksaw Ridge comparison chart
- Inferno comparison chart
- Tyler Perry’s Boo! A Madea Halloween comparison chart
- Jack Reacher: Never Go Back comparison chart

Bruce Nash,

Filed under: Weekend Box Office, Trolls, Deepwater Horizon, Doctor Strange, Hacksaw Ridge, Storks, Loving, Moonlight, Tyler Perry’s Boo! A Madea Halloween, The Eagle Huntress, Marvel Cinematic Universe