• Industry

World Box Office March 23-39

What happens when two comedians and a pair of divas walk into a spaceship? Well, if the ship happens to be made by the CGI maestros at DreamWorks, you end up with the biggest opening for animated film so far in 2015. Home, featuring the vocal talents of Jim Parsons, Steve Martin, Jennifer Lopez, and Rihanna topped the North American box office with a $54 million take in its domestic debut. Like last weekend and the one before, when Insurgent and Cinderella led the pack in the U.S., it was the nation’s female audience who turned out to make Home this frame’s biggest hit. Sixty percent of viewers were female, while 57% were under the age of 25. The film’s multi-ethnic cast proved to be a smart choice as well. Having a young, African-American woman as the lead is a rarity in Hollywood but this time it paid dividends, with ethnic minorities making up 53% of Home’s attendees this weekend. International sales were positive as well after last week’s successful overseas release, which included number one finishes in the UK, Russia, and Spain. Home added $24 million from 55 new markets including Italy, Germany, and Mexico, where it made a very decent $3 million. DreamWorks is opting for a staggered release in an effort to avoid direct competition with Disney’s Cinderella, and will continue to introduce its picture in key territories Brazil, France, China, and South Korea through April. So far, it has made a combined $102 million in its first week. While it is still short of its very high $135 million reported budget, a good outlook on future ticket sales as well as an expected windfall from the film’s soundtrack mean that this one will likely become profitable before the end of next week.
While the girls helped push Home to the top of the heap, second place winner Get Hard, starring Kevin Hart and Will Ferrell as a pair of wannabe prison gangsters, was very much a guy’s movie. Fifty four percent of its $34 million debut came from male ticket buyers, of whom 61% were over 25. Critics and audiences remained sharply divided on this film, with a collection of overwhelmingly negative reviews standing in contrast to a decidedly better B-Cinemascore. This film, which debuted to considerable fanfare at SXSW in Austin, Texas, did well to take advantage of this inaugural pairing of Hart and Ferrell, two of the most popular comedy actors in recent history. It also had a limited overseas launch, and made $4.2 million from a handful of territories including the UK and Australia. Also on the domestic chart, indie horror flic It Follows built on its significant art-house buzz by moving into 1,218 screens this frame. It cracked the top five with $4 million dollars. So far this dystopian psychological thriller has made $6.3 million from a budget less than a third of that total.
Back to the international contest, Cinderella moved to the top of the heap again, ending its third overseas frame with $34.7 million. It made use of a $5 million UK opening, and debuted in Spain with $3.2 million, also in first. It made $3.4 million from its launch in Brazil, and its French opening garnered $3.7 million, while a third frame in China brought $6.5 million. With Easter holidays keeping kids out of school for the beginning of next week in most of the world’s Christian-majority nations, prospects are good for another big addition to its already impressive $336.3 million global cume.
Insurgent added $29.9 million in its second week overseas. With the addition of a $22 million showing for second place at home, it has now reached a combined domestic and international cumulative of $180 million.
Kingsman: The Secret Service stayed near the top of the international chart once more thanks to a Chinese launch worth $20 million. Fox and Marv Films original spy flic has become a genuine blockbuster with an international cumulative of $328.4 million and there is already talk of a possible sequel.
Speaking of sequels, next weekend we’ll gear up for Furious 7, the latest entry in the high-octane franchise that began in 2001 and the last to feature its departed leading man Paul Walker.
Lorenzo Soria