Weekend Box Office: Zootopia Gnaws On The Competition

Disney’s blockbuster Zootopia remained King of the box office jungle for a third straight weekend, holding off the moderate openings of The Divergent Series: Allegiant and the religious drama Miracles From Heaven. The box office top ten was even with last year at this time, but should experience a massive uptick starting this upcoming Thursday night when the highly-anticipated Batman Vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice begins its theatrical run.

In the meantime, movie goers just can’t seem to get enough of the lovable denizens of Zootopia. Currently playing on 3,959 screens, the acclaimed animated feature earned an estimated $38 million this weekend, a mere audience erosion of 26% from its sophomore session. After seventeen days, Zootopia has earned a great $201.8 million. With strong box office legs and the Easter holiday just around the corner, Zootopia has a very good chance of zipping past the $300 million mark –if not further- by the end of its domestic run. Foreign totals are currently at $390 million, of which $112 million has come from China alone.

The news wasn’t as good for the latest in Lionsgate’s Hunger Games wannabe, The Divergent Series: Allegiant. The latest chapter in the futuristic franchise, slaughtered by critics and not too warmly embraced by its target audience, opened with an estimated $29 million from 3,740 theaters. That’s nearly 44% lower than last year’s chapter, Insurgent and 46% less than the 2014 original. Foreign markets haven’t been too crazy about the third film either. After two weeks, Allegiant has only brought in a little over $53 million. That would be great if that total was earned by a handful of markets, but apparently it’s opened in nearly every major market overseas. The fourth and final chapter in the Divergent franchise, Ascendant, is due in June of 2017.

The new faith-based drama Miracles From Heaven had a good opening in third. Arriving in time to cash in on the upcoming Easter holiday, the $13 million TriStar production arrived on 3,047 screens this past Wednesday, where it made $3.5 million in its first two days before earning a decent $15 million over the weekend. Jennifer Garner and Queen Latifah star in the drama.

Paramount’s acclaimed sci-fi horror flick 10 Cloverfield Lane landed in fourth place this weekend with an estimated $12.5 million from 3,427 theaters. The film lost 49% of its opening weekend crowds – a solid hold for a genre pic like this- while bringing up its ten-day total to the $45 million mark. The J.J. Abrams-produced flick should finish with roughly $60 million in the bank.

Rounding out the top five is Fox’s superhero comedy Deadpool with an estimated $8 million from 2,924 theaters. Off only 27%, the Merc With A Mouth has earned $341 million through six weeks of domestic release. Deadpool may see its fortunes dwindle a little more quickly once Batman et Superman opens for business, but it should still be able to muscle past American Sniper to become the second-highest grossing R-rated feature of all time before it hits home video in early May.

Outside the top five:

  1. London Has Fallen (Focus) $6.8 million (-36%); $50 million
  2. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot (Paramount) $2.8 million (-40%); $19.2 million
  3. The Perfect Match (Lionsgate) $1.9 million (-56%); $7.3 million
  4. The Brothers Grimsby (Sony) $1.4 million (-57%); $5.6 million
  5. The Revenant (Fox) $1.2 million (-40%); $181 million

The lucrative Easter holiday weekend brings not only the return of the Caped Crusader and the Man of Steel, it also heralds (?) the arrival of My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out which film will be on top: Allegiant.

Just kidding.

The only question surrounding Batman Vs Superman is just how big it will open. Dawn of Justice has been selling advanced tickets at a very rapid pace, which should help it breeze past the $116 million debut of Man of Steel from three years ago. But will Zack Snyder’s latest ode to destroying buildings reach the $160 million pulled in by The Dark Knight Rises back in 2012? Next Sunday will tell. Same bat time…eh, you know the rest.

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