Woody and Buzz Lightyear knock the stuffing out of the box office!
As predicted last week, Disney/Pixar’s ‘Toy Story 4‘ debuted at the top of the chart this past weekend. Estimates predicted the film would open with a $140 million weekend. That proved to be too enthusiastic however as the film opened with $118 million. The fourth go around of Woody, Buzz and Co cost an estimated $200 million to produce but wowed the critics worldwide, gaining an almost exemplary average of 98%. Added to the mix was $120 million taken by box offices worldwide to give the film a $238 million start. Directed by the long-serving storyboard artist Josh Cooley, making his directorial debut, the film has added the voices of Keanu Reeves, Jordan Peele and Christina Hendricks among others to it’s already bulging impressive list of voice actors. Disney has gained another home run to add to an impressive list of box office successes this summer, putting it firmly in the top place studio wise for this year.
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The remake of 1988’s hit horror film, ‘Child’s Play‘ scared itself into a second-placed opening. The $10 million budgeted scarer opened with $14 million, beating the series previous best opening (Bride Of Chucky) which took $11.8 million back in 1998. Featuring actress Aubrey Plaza in the role of Karen Barclay alongside legendary actor Mark Hamill as the new voice of Chucky, the film didn’t agree with all critics, gaining a 60% average. Most though were universal in their praise of Hamill’s voice talents as the eponymous killer doll, now reprogrammed by a vengeful, fired worker instead of being possessed by the spirit of a dead serial killer. A neat twist and a nice update for the serial killing character.
Disney’s live-action remake of ‘Aladdin‘ still held firm and continued to haul in the treasure in the third position. Adding a further $12.2 million to its impressive box office haul, the film now sits on an incredible $287.5 domestically and $810 million worldwide against its budget of $183 million. The combination of director Guy Ritchie and star Will Smith has worked its magic against the odds and against critics like myself who didn’t give the film much of a chance after the disappointment of ‘Dumbo‘ back in March.
Falling three places from last weekends leading position to number four, ‘Men In Black International‘ managed to grab a further $10.7million, bringing its totals to $52.6 million domestic and $182 million worldwide against a reported budget of $110 million. Not the box office giant Sony and Columbia were hoping for. With poor critical reviews, reported behind the scenes problems and bad word of mouth from audiences, the film, though aiming for the stars, seems to be destined to get no higher than a commercial aircraft cruising altitude.
‘The Secret Life Of Pets 2‘ managed to keep enchanting audiences in the fifth position with a $10.2 million weekend. The animated animal sequel now sits on $117.5 million at the U.S box office and $194.6 million worldwide against its $80 million budget. Elton John biopic ‘Rocketman‘ held firm in sixth place. Domestically, the film has now rocked its way to $77.3 million and a worldwide $153.4 million against a cost of $4 0million.
Like a bullet from a gun, ‘John Wick Chapter 3: Parabellum‘ shot up the chart by a place to the seventh position. Keanu Reeves and his assassin companions now hold a $156 million domestic box office take in their hands and a $289 million worldwide gross against its $75 million costs. Six weekends in and our favourite dog loving hitman shows no signs of flagging or losing his place in the top ten after its $4 million weekend.
‘Godzilla: King Of The Monsters‘ used all its claws and talons to keep hold of its place in the top ten and battled its way to another $3.7 million. The monster movie has now managed to fight its way past the $100 million mark domestically and has earned $350 million around the world against its $170 million budget.
The final movie in the Fox incarnation of the characters, ‘X-Men: Dark Phoenix‘ used its powers to grab another $3.6million as it landed in the ninth position. The Simon Kinberg directed mutant movie sits on a U.S box office total of $60.1million and has taken $232.9 million worldwide against its $200 million costs. The film can only be viewed as a disappointment for Fox as it bids goodbye to the characters as they move into the MCU at Disney. The film, although better than the first take on the material (X-Men: The Last Stand) still couldn’t do the storyline justice even with an excellent, emotional and winning performance by Sophie Turner as the tragic character of Jean Grey/ Phoenix. And with an incredibly large Hugh Jackman/ Wolverine shaped hole running throughout the entire film, the film feels much less than it could have been even with a rather enjoyable final battle contained within it.
Losing 60% of its opening business and getting royally shafted by its production companies, the 2019 version of ‘Shaft‘ ended this weeks rundown at number ten with a take of $3.5 million, bringing its total to $15.9 million against its production budget of $30 million. I’ve already said my piece on the film and my feelings on it being a U.S only theatrical release so I won’t comment on it any further.
Going off the air this weekend was Emma Thompson/ Mindy Kaling talk show comedy ‘Late Night‘ as it bid goodbye to the top ten and ‘MA‘ finally said her final goodnight as Octavia Spencer decided to drop out of the chart.
One of the surprises of the weekend was the financial disappointment of the French director’s Luc Besson’s new film, ‘Anna‘. Although the film opened on 2,100 screens across the U.S, the film only managed to grab itself a $3.5 million opening. The $30 million budgeted action film, even though its stars include Helen Mirren, Cillian Murphy and newcomer Sasha Luss, was savaged by the critics, only granting it a 25% average. The film still has to open around the world so may yet turn a profit but it will be hard pressed after its failure to crack the U.S box office top ten.
Next weekend sees the release of Danny Boyle’s comedy ‘Yesterday‘, which depicts a man waking one day to a world that has never heard of the Beatles or their music and claiming he has written all their material. The film has opened in the U.K already to good critical buzz and could work its magic on the U.S chart. Also, in their attempt to wrestle the box office overall crown from ‘Avatar‘, Disney re-releases ‘Avengers: Endgame‘ in a slightly extended version with a deleted scene and a new after credits sequence tacked on. And horror sequel/’The Conjuring’ spin-off ‘Annabelle Comes Home‘ is released, giving audiences THREE doll related movies vying for their hard-earned cash.
So, over to you again. What are your predictions for next weekend’s box office champion? Can toys take the top three spots on the chart? Can The Beatles sing their way to box office glory? Or will The Avengers have a last hurrah and take the top of the box office again?
Check back here next week for the answers as we thunder towards July and our date with ‘Spider-Man: Far From Home‘ and the close of Marvel’s third phase. Please share your thoughts with us and until next time, happy movie going!
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Carl Roberts is one of The Future of the Force’s Senior Staff Writers and Books and Literature Correspondents. He loves Star Wars, Marvel, DC, Indiana Jones and Horror movies. Follow him on Twitter @CarlRoberts2 where he uses the force frequently!