It was one of the busiest weekends at the box-office for the year in terms of new titles hitting the market both in wide and limited release.
Four major wide releases hit with the top three spots a tight competition between three sequels – Tyler Perry’s “Boo! A Madea Halloween,” the Tom Cruise-led “Jack Reacher: Never Go Back,” and the horror follow-up “Ouija: Origin of Evil”.
Ultimately it was Perry who won out, taking the top spot with a stunning $27.6 million. Perry, who played the role numerous times, hadn’t donned the wig in three years and the audience that turned out for the new one boasted a more diverse audience with African-American audience members at 60% as opposed to the 80-90% for the previous Madea films.
It was followed by ‘Reacher’ who surpassed the first film’s $15 million bow with a $23 million opening domestically and a further $31 million from 40 markets overseas, this was despite poor reviews which were considerably down from the first one.
The “Ouija” prequel on the other hand had considerably better reviews than its predecessor, but that wasn’t enough to see a dip in the film’s opening with a $14.1 million third place haul. Even so, with a budget of just $9 million it’s already in the black.
The fourth wide opener, the Jon Hamm and Zach Galifianakis comedy “Keeping Up with the Joneses,” bombed big time – coming in seventh with $5.6 million. The faith-based “I’m Not Ashamed” also opened and bombed big time with a $900,000 haul across 500 screens.
In terms of repeat business, the Ben Affleck-led “The Accountant” held firm, falling a slim 43% in its second weekend with $14 million and nabbing fourth place. The concert comedy “Kevin Hart: What Now?” dropped 65% in its sophomore outing.
On the limited release front, Barry Jenkins’ serious awards contender “Moonlight” had a $103,685 per screen average across four screens in New York and Los Angeles – the best per screen average in a cinema since “The Revenant” nabbed $118,640 late last year.
Michael Moore’s surprise documentary “Michael Moore in TrumpLand” opened well to on two screens with a $25,100 screen average and that’s despite the film also being the top film on iTunes. Also faring well were Park Chan-Wook’s “The Handmaiden” with an impressive $18,320 per screen average across five screens, and James Franco’s “King Cobra” with a $9,500 on one screen whilst it was simultaneously hitting iTunes.
Not going so good were Ewan McGregor’s “American Pastoral” which managed $151,000 from a 30 screen opening for a $3,020 per screen average and Ti West’s “In a Valley of Violence” which had a $909 per screen average. Doco’s “Fire at Sea” and “We Are X” also opened to decent but little fanfare.