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Weekend Wrap-Up: Dunkirk has Stellar $50.51 million Opening

July 25th, 2017

Girls Trip

Both Dunkirk and Girls Trip topped expectations earning $50.51 million and $31.20 million respectively. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets didn’t do as well, but it should do well internationally. Overall, the weekend box office rose 11% from last weekend earning $181 million. On the downside, this was 7.8% lower than the same weekend last year and 2017 had already lost its lead over 2016, so this is really bad news. Year-to-date, 2017 is now behind 2016 by $31 million / 0.5% at $6.46 billion to $6.49 billion. Things really need to turn around soon, but I don’t think that’s going to happen. Hopefully the fall will be much better.

Dunkirk opened in first place with $50.51 million over the weekend, which is on the high end of expectations. It is also the second best non-Batman opening weekend for Christopher Nolan, just ahead of Interstellar and behind Inception. There are some troubling signs, as its internal multiplier was a mere 2.56. Given its more mature target demographic, its award-worthy reviews, and its A minus from CinemaScore, I was expecting more than this. That said, this summer has been saturated with front-loaded films, so maybe this should no longer be surprising.

On the other hand, Girls Trip earned $31.20 million with an internal multiplier of 2.67. That’s more acceptable. The film only cost $28 million to make and will only need to make just over $50 million domestically to pay for its production budget. If it can make $100 million, then it will likely break even entirely on just its domestic box office. (Something strange would have to happen for it not to break even eventually after a start like this.) Its reviews are amazing and it earned an A plus from CinemaScore, so if the word-of-mouth can help create some crossover appeal, then $100 million is a possibility. I wouldn’t bet on it, but it isn’t impossible either.

Spider-Man: Homecoming was next with $22.15 million over the weekend for a three-week total of $251.85 million. Its theater average is low enough that it will start losing theaters at an accelerated pace, but there are not a lot of potential $100 million releases left this summer, so the weak competition could help it get to $300 million domestically.

War for the Planet of the Apes plummeted 63% to $20.88 million over the weekend for a two-week total of $98.24 million. A film with 94% positive reviews shouldn’t fall this fast. However, it has happened a lot this summer, so perhaps this is the new normal.

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets managed fifth place with $17.01 million. This is a terrible start for a film that cost $180 million to make, but this film was made for a European audience, so it should do much better over there. The film can still be a hit, if it does well in Europe and Asia.

The Big Sick held on well down just 34% to $5.01 million for a total of $24.55 million, including its limited release run. It became the biggest limited release of the year on Monday; however, its theater average is low enough that it will likely start losing theaters. Wish Upon fell 55%, which isn’t bad for a horror film. Unfortunately, it started out weak so it only managed $2.48 million over the weekend for a ten-day total of $10.52 million.

Weekend Box Office Chart

- Dunkirk Comparisons
- Girls Trip Comparisons
- Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets Comparisons

Filed under: Weekend Wrap-up, War for the Planet of the Apes, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, Dunkirk, Girls Trip, The Big Sick, Wish Upon, Dark Knight Trilogy, Christopher Nolan
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