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Weekend Wrap-Up: The Holiday Box Office Season has Arrived

November 15th, 2016


The weekend box office was better than anticipated, thanks mostly to Remembrance Day. Doctor Strange fell less than 50%, which is stunning for a big blockbuster like this. Trolls held on even better and Arrival had a surprisingly strong opening weekend. Granted, the overall box office still dropped by 18% to $158 million, but some drop-off is unavoidable the weekend after a blockbuster release. This was 46% higher than the same weekend last year and that is a lot more important. Year-to-date, 2016 has earned $9.49 billion, putting it 5.7% or $510 million ahead of last year’s pace.

Doctor Strange benefited from Remembrance Day in an unexpected way. Remembrance Day isn’t usually associated with going to the movies; on the other hand, it usually doesn’t land on a Friday. The film fell just 49% over the weekend earning $42.97 million for a total of $152.95 million after 10 days of release. Even if it falls by close to 55% next weekend, its theater average will still be above $5,000 meaning it won’t lose too many theaters over Thanksgiving weekend and that will really help its box office numbers going forward.

Trolls dipped just 25% to $34.98 million over the weekend for a two-week total of $93.94 million. Some thought the film would not be able to get to $100 million domestically, so to be this close after just 10 days is a real accomplishment. Since it is doing even better internationally, it will likely have no trouble breaking even before it reaches the home market.

Arrival opened in third place with $24.07 million over the weekend in just 2,317 theaters. This is on the very high end of expectations and the studio has to be happy about this. It should also be happy about the film’s reviews, which are 93% positive. On the other hand, it only managed a B from CinemaScore, which is a little troubling. We will know which one is having a bigger effect this time next week.

Almost Christmas landed in fourth place with $15.13 million, which is a great start for a film that cost $17 million to make. Its reviews are fine, while it earned an A minus from CinemaScore. I don’t expect it to do much business internationally, but it should break even on the home market.

Hacksaw Ridge fell just 30% to $10.63 million over the weekend for a two-week total of $32.12 million. Its stellar reviews are certainly helping its legs. On the downside, it started out low enough that its theater average is going to convince some theater owners to drop it by Thanksgiving long weekend.

Shut In was shut out with just $3.50 million over the weekend. There are still zero positive reviews, while it only managed a C from CinemaScore. Add in a theater average that is below the Mendoza Line ($2,000/theater) and it will have incredibly short legs. Granted, it only cost $10 million to make, but I think the investors will have to write off the entire amount.

- Weekend Box Office

- Arrival Comparisons
- Almost Christmas Comparisons
- Shut In Comparisons

Filed under: Weekend Wrap-up, Trolls, Doctor Strange, Shut In, Hacksaw Ridge, Arrival, Almost Christmas