Weekend Box Office Report: March 5 – 7, 2021

The weekend box office report is provided by Daniel Garris, courtesy of BoxOfficeReport.com.

Weekend Estimates Update:

Disney’s Raya and the Last Dragon debuted in first place this weekend with an estimated $8.60 million. That represented the fifth largest opening weekend of any film since theatres re-opened this past August (behind only Wonder Woman 1984Tom & JerryThe Croods: A New Age and Tenet). However, there had been hope that Raya and the Last Dragon would open closer to the estimated $14.11 million launch of Tom & Jerry last weekend, but ultimately the critically acclaimed computer animated film from Walt Disney Animation Studios didn’t reach those heights this weekend. Instead, Raya and the Last Dragon opened closer to the $9.72 million opening weekend of last year’s The Croods: A New Age (though it should be noted that the opening weekend gross of The Croods: A New Age was deflated by that film’s Wednesday opening).

While Raya and the Last Dragon, which was directed by Don Hall and Carlos López Estrada and features the vocal talent of Kelly Marie Tran and Awkwafina, had far better critical reviews than Tom & Jerry and the added advantage of New York City and San Francisco theatres starting to open back up this weekend, Raya and the Last Dragon also had the relative disadvantage of opening in 2,045 locations this weekend (430 fewer locations than the 2,475 locations Tom & Jerry opened in last weekend). This weekend’s location count for Raya and the Last Dragon was scaled back as a result of several major domestic theatre chains (Cinemark, Harkins and Canada’s Cineplex) not playing the film this weekend as a result of those chains reportedly not coming to an agreement with Disney on terms for the film. Potential for Raya and the Last Dragon was also held back this weekend from the film facing direct competition for family audiences from Tom & Jerry and indirect competition from fellow new releases Chaos Walking and Boogie (whereas Tom & Jerry launched in a wide open marketplace) and from opening day-and-date theatrically and via streaming on Disney+ as a premiere access title (last weekend Tom & Jerry also opened day-and-date).

Going forward, Raya and the Last Dragon is likely to hold up extremely well. In addition to exceptional critical reviews, Raya and the Last Dragon looks to be going over great with audiences after the film received a strong A rating on CinemaScore. In the weeks ahead, Raya and the Last Dragon will benefit from no other new animated films currently being scheduled to enter the marketplace until Sony’s animated / live-action hybrid Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway does so on May 14, as well as from additional domestic theatres continuing to re-open (including throughout other areas of California) and already open theatres beginning to ease capacity restrictions in certain areas.

Internationally, Raya and the Last Dragon debuted with an estimated $17.6 million this weekend from 32 markets. That places the film’s global start at $26.2 million. This weekend’s international performance for Raya and the Last Dragon was led by a modest $8.4 million debut in China (which included $1.13 million from IMAX screens). Additional international debuts included $2.8 million in Russia, $1.2 million in Australia and $1.0 million in South Korea.

On the heels of last weekend’s stronger than expected first place start, Warner’s Tom & Jerry placed in a fairly close second this weekend with an estimated $6.62 million. While Tom & Jerry declined a sharp 53 percent this weekend, that still represented a better second weekend hold than those of Warner’s previous day-and-date HBO Max releases (Wonder Woman 1984The Little Things and Judas and the Black Messiah all experienced second weekend declines in the range of 57 – 67 percent). In addition to going over well with audiences (Tom & Jerry received a healthy A- rating on CinemaScore), Tom & Jerry (which takes place in New York City) was clearly helped out this weekend by the re-opening of New York City theatres (New York was the film’s top DMA market this weekend). Tom & Jerry no doubt also received a boost this weekend from not facing competition from Raya and the Last Dragon in the Cinemark, Harkins and Cineplex theatre chains. At the end of the day, regardless of the other factors involved, family audiences have also just been more willing to watch Tom & Jerry in theatres than they have Raya and the Last Dragon, at least out of the gate. The estimated ten-day total for Tom & Jerry stands at $22.96 million. Impressively, that is 13 percent ahead of the $20.34 million The Croods: A New Age grossed through its first twelve days of release. Look for Tom & Jerry to stabilize next weekend and for the film to finish even closer to Raya and the Last Dragon in next weekend’s rankings than it already did this weekend.

Internationally, Tom & Jerry took in an estimated $5.0 million this weekend from 35 markets. Through Sunday, respective totals for Tom & Jerry stand at $34.3 million internationally and $57.3 million globally. Estimated international totals by market through Sunday for Tom & Jerry include $14.9 million in China, $5.7 million in Russia, $1.5 million in Mexico, $1.5 million in the United Arab Emirates, $1.1 million in Brazil, $1.0 million in South Korea, $1.0 million in Taiwan, $0.97 million in Singapore, $0.95 million in Colombia and $0.87 million in India. This coming weekend Tom & Jerry will open in Argentina, Hong Kong and Indonesia.

Lionsgate’s Chaos Walking debuted in third place this weekend with an estimated $3.83 million. The pricey young adult sci-fi film directed by Doug Liman and starring Daisy Ridley and Tom Holland opened towards the lower end of its already modest expectations. Chaos Walking played in a relatively modest 1,980 locations this weekend, which did give the film a per-location average of $1,932 (which is respectable by current standards). Chaos Walking received a small boost from grossing an estimated $0.30 million from 217 domestic IMAX screens this weekend (Chaos Walking shared IMAX screens with Raya and the Last Dragon this weekend). In comparison to other films in recent months, Chaos Walking debuted just ahead of the $3.60 million start of Freaky back in November and just behind the $4.00 million debut of Let Him Go (also this past November). While Chaos Walking has gone over poorly with critics, the film does look to be going over better with audiences after receiving a respectable B rating on CinemaScore. Normally a film like Chaos Walking would be quite front-loaded towards opening weekend, but the film could hold up somewhat better than usual, especially with no new major wide releases entering the marketplace each of the next two weeks. Internationally, Chaos Walking grossed an estimated $2.6 million this weekend, for an estimated global start of $6.4 million.

Fellow new release Focus’ Boogie started out in fourth place with an estimated $1.20 million. The sports drama was directed by Eddie Huang and stars Taylor Takahashi, Taylour Paige and the late rap artist Bashar ‘Pop Smoke’ Jackson. With a location count of 1,252, Boogie didn’t go as wide as the weekend’s other two new wide releases. Boogie, which takes place in Queens, did quite well in the New York City market, as that market was responsible for a number of sell-outs and an estimated 19 percent of the film’s overall gross this weekend. Unfortunately, Boogie wasn’t nearly as strong outside of New York City. Still, Boogie did open a bit higher that each of Focus’ previous three semi-wide releases; LandPromising Young Woman and Half Brothers (which all opened in the range of $0.70 million – $0.90 million). Initial critical reviews for Boogie had started out fairly solid, but on the average became more negative as the week went on. The film also doesn’t look to be going over all that well with audiences after receiving a lackluster C+ rating on CinemaScore.

Universal and DreamWorks Animation’s The Croods: A New Age was down three spots from last weekend to round out this weekend’s top five with an estimated $0.78 million. The Croods: A New Age declined 38 percent from last weekend, which was a solid hold, especially given three new wide releases entering the marketplace this weekend. While holdovers in general were helped out by New York City (and San Francisco) theatres starting to open back up this weekend, percentage declines for holdovers still tended to be larger than they’ve been in recent weeks as a result of holdovers losing screens and showtimes this weekend throughout the rest of the domestic marketplace. The Croods: A New Age has grossed an estimated $53.61 million through 103 days. That gives the film a strong current gross to opening weekend ratio of 5.51 to 1. After taking in an estimated $0.24 million internationally this weekend, respective totals for The Croods: A New Age stand at $104.1 million internationally and $157.7 million globally.

Additional estimated grosses for holdovers this weekend included $0.55 million for Warner’s The Little Things, $0.51 million for fellow Warner Bros. release Wonder Woman 1984 and $0.50 million for Open Road and Briarcliff’s The MarksmanThe Little Things declined a respectable 41 percent from last weekend, while Wonder Woman 1984 and The Marksman continued to hold up well with respective percentage declines of 28 percent and 29 percent. Respective estimated total grosses stand at $44.45 million for Wonder Woman 1984 through 73 days, at $13.69 million for The Little Things through 38 days and at $13.00 million for The Marksman after 52 days. Internationally, Wonder Woman 1984 has grossed an estimated $118.1 million to date for an estimated global total of $162.5 million, while The Little Things has grossed an estimated $11.5 million to date internationally for a current global total of $25.2 million.

With a combined estimated total gross of $23.12 million, this weekend’s top ten had the second largest combined total of any weekend top ten since the re-opening of domestic theatres (slightly behind only Christmas weekend). While that is an encouraging development; the combined grosses of this weekend’s three new wide releases ($13.63 million) coming in a bit under the $14.11 million start of Tom & Jerry last weekend is underwhelming at the same time for the marketplace as a whole, especially given the relatively strong grosses from re-opened New York City theatres this weekend.

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