Box Office Breakdown: “Ant-Man and The Wasp” Wins Weekend as “Incredibles” Hits Milestone

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Sequels dominated the weekend and Disney dominated the top spots at the box office as the second weekend of 4th of July helped continue a record year for box office numbers. Farther down the ranks a limited release shined ahead of its wide release and a documentary focusing on a beloved singer barely missed out on a top ten spot. It was a busy weekend so let’s take a closer look in this week’s Box Office Breakdown for July 6-8, 2018.

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At the top spot was the third and final Marvel Studios offering of 2018 “Ant-Man and the Wasp”. The sequel to 2015’s “Ant-Man” and the twentieth film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, “Ant-Man and The Wasp” took in $76 million domestically, well below the $202 million and $257 million earned from “Black Panther” and “Avengers: Infinity War” during their respective opening weekends, but that was expected. The sequel trumped the original’s opening weekend take of $57 million. “Ant-Man and The Wasp” took in another $85 million overseas for a $161 million worldwide opening weekend. It’s the ninth weekend of 2018 where an MCU film reigned supreme. Sporting great reviews and benefiting from the hype and need for levity left from Marvel Studios’ first two flicks of the year, “Ant-Man and The Wasp” is poised to have plenty of staying power. You can read my review of the film here if you wish.

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Disney owned the second spot at the box office as well with “Incredibles 2” showing, well, incredible staying power earning another $29 million bringing its domestic earnings over $500 million. This total is a record domestically for an animated feature and officially makes the sequel the highest grossing animated movie in the United States topping “Finding Dory”. “Incredibles 2” knocked “Frozen” out of the top five. In terms of global success, “Incredibles 2” has grossed $772 million in all territories. “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom” lost both the number one and number two spots over the weekend dropping to third after a two-week dominance. The Universal Studios offering earned $28 million domestically and another $27 million overseas to push its worldwide gross to $1.058 billion.

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The second big release of the weekend, also from Universal in association with Blumhouse, was “The First Purge”, a prequel film that shows the origins of the titular night of terror in America where all crime, including murder, is legal for 12 hours. The fourth movie in the “Purge” franchise, “The First Purge” debuted on the 4th of July giving it a few extra days, including Tuesday night previews, to gain some steam. The horror offering finished with $31 million over its five day opening but opened at number four at the box office as its $17 million three-day gross was the only number considered in the final tally. The film made nearly $11 million in foreign markets.

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Rounding out the top five was last week’s new release, “Sicario: Day of the Soldado” followed by another sophomore weekend film “Uncle Drew” in sixth. “Ocean’s 8”, “Tag”, “Won’t You Be My Neighbor” and “Deadpool 2” all rounded out the top ten. A few other new movies did make an impact over the weekend as well. Barely missing the top ten was “Whitney”, a new Whitney Houston documentary by Roadside Attractions that drew in $1.2 million in 452 theaters in its opening weekend. Annapurna’s “Sorry to Bother You” finished in sixteenth after an impressive limited debut in only 16 theaters drawing in $717,302 for the highest per theater gross of any film by far. “Sorry to Bother You” will expand to wide release this weekend.

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It’s a bit early to determine whether or not “Ant-Man and The Wasp” will hold the number one spot. It might depend on the drop off and the popularity of yet another sequel making its way into theaters this weekend. The Marvel film’s main competition will be Sony and Columbia’s “Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation”, the continuation of the popular animated film series based on legendary movie and literature monsters, and “Skyscraper”, another action entry led by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. The first two “Hotel Transylvania” movies each grossed $42 million and $48 million in their domestic opening weekends respectively so the success of this third movie may be dependent on the carryover power of “Ant-Man and The Wasp”. This third film will also open in around 300 more theaters that the previous two so I would look for a tight race between these movies with “Skyscraper”, which doesn’t have the benefit of a popular source material like Johnson’s previous two films, either surprising and proving me wrong or falling a bit behind to finish third at the box office next weekend. This could all also be determined by whether or not “Incredibles 2” continues to be the preferred animated feature in theaters for the month of July.

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