Last week we saw “Bohemian Rhapsody” make a statement with a box office win kicking off the penultimate month of 2018. November doesn’t look to be slowing down either with Oscar season offerings and big budget projects all being churned out over the next six weeks or so. This past weekend was no different with three new major releases attempting to draw crowds, all from different genres. Were any of these films able to defeat the Queen biopic or did they fall flat with audiences? Let’s take a look in this week’s Box Office Breakdown, Nov. 9-11, 2018.
It was Illumination and Universal Studios’ “The Grinch” that stole the spotlight over the weekend. This new computer animated retelling of Dr. Seuss’ famous holiday tale is the second theatrical adaptation of the story after 2000’s live action film and earned $66 million in its opening weekend beating the previous film’s $55 million opening weekend gross albeit in over a thousand more theaters more than its predecessor. It also received another $12.7 million abroad. “The Grinch” received lukewarm reviews from critics but managed to draw in its target audience effectively claiming the third largest opening for an animated film in cinema history behind “The Incredibles” and “Frozen”. Considering “The Grinch” is the only film specifically designed to pander to the Christmas holiday this year other than Disney’s failed “Nutcracker” adaptation I’d say it has a good chance to rake in the moolah over the next month and a half. If you’d like to read my review of “The Grinch” you can do so here.
“Bohemian Rhapsody” easily held on to second place with another $30.8 million thus reaching over $100 million after a ten-day run domestically while also seeing strong numbers internationally. It nears $290 million on a global scale with several markets still to receive a release. You have to drop to third to reach the next new entry in the top ten and that was the J.J. Abrams produced action horror film “Overlord”. Once thought to be a new addition to the “Cloverfield” franchise, “Overload” received great reviews from both fans and critics but wasn’t able to scare up much outside of its target audience falling below expectations with a mere $10.1 million domestically and another $9.2 million internationally. You can read my review of “Overlord” here.
“The Nutcracker and the Four Realms” came in fourth with $9.56 million and in fifth is the disappointment of the weekend, “The Girl I the Spider’s Web”. Despite decent reviews this soft reboot of the cinematic takes on the “Millennium” novel series made almost no impact earning only $8 million, well below even the most conservative estimates despite decent reviews. It only managed another $6.2 million internationally on $43 million budget meaning this attempt to Americanize the franchise, which was originally a cinematic hit in Sweden, may have been sidelined once again. The rest of the top ten contained familiar names. “A Star is Born” finally saw some loss of momentum dropping to sixth while continuing to hold a steady crowd with its own $8 million-plus weekend. “Nobody’s Fool”, “Venom”, “Halloween” and “The Hate U Give” rounded out the top ten. “Venom” made major headlines with its debut in China where it scored a $111 million weekend which alone is more than the entire production budget of the film.
Warner Bros. looks to continue its monster year with the latest “Harry Potter” franchise addition this weekend. The second entry in the spinoff prequels “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” will debut in over 4,000 theaters and, despite controversy earlier this year involving Johnny Depp’s continued involvement in the film despite abuse accusations, it’s expected to be next week’s top film. The Mark Wahlberg-led comedy “Instant Family” and Fox’s female-led heist thriller “Widows” are “Fantastic Beasts'” biggest competition while the much talked about “Green Book” receives and extremely limited release before going wide over the Thanksgiving Holiday.