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Weekend Estimates: Fantastic Beasts Makes Fantastic-ish $75 Million

November 20th, 2016

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is doing everything Warner Bros. could have wished for this weekend, posting a lively $75 million opening in the US, hitting $143.3 million internationally for a global opening over $200 million, and getting a A CinemaScore that should give it positive word of mouth going into Thanksgiving. For a franchise reboot, that’s a lot of reasons to be happy, although its opening is well below the openings enjoyed by the original Harry Potter franchise. The worst of those, Chamber of Secrets, opened with $88 million over three days (Order of the Phoenix and Half-Blood Prince both technically had slower weekends than Chamber of Secrets, but both of them opened on Wednesday, and they still did over $75 million Friday–Sunday).

Perhaps the fairest comparison for Fantastic Beasts is The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which debuted with $84.6 million in December, 2012. It went on to make $303 million domestically and just topped $1 billion worldwide. Those are the benchmarks that Fantastic Beasts has to live up to and they look doable, but challenging. Word of mouth will be a key factor, but the film will be helped considerably by having little direct competition until Rogue One rolls out on December 16.

This weekend’s other wide releases are all missing out. The Edge of Seventeen is headed for $4.8 million from 1,945 theaters, which is an unfair outcome for a film that dares to be a little bit different and is getting excellent reviews. Hopefully it can put together something of a run at the box office over the next few weeks and get its just desserts on the home market. Bleed for This is looking in even worse shape with $2.4 million expected from 1,549 locations and not enough awards pedigree to give it a long-term shot as Oscar season gets into high gear. Those two films are comparative hits when compared to Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, which won’t even reach $1 million this weekend after expanding to 1,176 theaters, for an average of just $791.

Two big Oscar contenders hit theaters this weekend, and both got the kind of opening that they needed to generate some extra buzz. Manchester by the Sea will pick up around $240,000 from just four theaters, for the fourth-best theater average of 2016, and the best ever achieved by Roadside Attractions. Noctural Animals will just fall short of $500,000, with Focus expecting a total of $494,000 from 37 venues, and an average of $13,351.

Two other films will top $10,000 per theater this weekend: Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened is set for $22,573 from two locations, and Daughters of the Dust will pick up $10,842 from one theater.

A couple of other award hopefuls are continuing on notable runs. Moonlight will make about $1.6 million from 650 theaters this weekend for 11th place, Loving will earn about $854,000 from 137, for an average still over $6,000 in its third weekend. Both films will be hoping for some nominations to keep them in the public eye.

- Weekend estimates

- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them comparison chart
- The Edge of Seventeen comparison chart
- Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk comparison chart
- Bleed for This comparison chart
- Arrival comparison chart
- Almost Christmas comparison chart
- Doctor Strange comparison chart
- Marvel Cinematic Universe at the box office
- Trolls comparison chart
- Hacksaw Ridge comparison chart

Bruce Nash,

Filed under: Weekend Box Office, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, Manchester by the Sea, The Edge of Seventeen, Nocturnal Animals, Bleed for This, Loving, Moonlight, Daughters of the Dust, Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened, Harry Potter, Marvel Cinematic Universe
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