Weekend Box Office Report: August 6 – August 8, 2021

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

Weekend Estimates Update:

Warner’s The Suicide Squad opened in first place this weekend with an estimated $26.55 million. However, the pricey James Gunn directed standalone sequel to 2016’s Suicide Squad came in below already scaled back consensus expectations, which had tended to range in the high-twenty million to mid-thirty million area heading into the weekend. With that said, The Suicide Squad still registered the seventh largest opening weekend since the re-opening of domestic theatres and the largest opening weekend for an R-rated film since re-opening. The opening weekend take for The Suicide Squad came in below the $35.02 million start of Jungle Cruise last weekend, as well as the $33.01 million pre-pandemic debut of fellow DCEU / Harley Quinn film Birds of Prey back in February of 2020. Despite exceptional critical reviews, at the end of the day audiences just weren’t all that excited about a less mainstream friendly follow-up to 2016’s PG-13 rated Suicide Squad. And as with Warner’s other 2021 releases, The Suicide Squad opened day-and-date this weekend, via streaming on HBO Max, which certainly looks to have taken a toll on the film’s theatrical potential this weekend.

Another factor that hurt The Suicide Squad this weekend is that the film had some trouble appealing to audiences outside of older males. The film’s audience skewed 59 percent male, 41 percent female, 66 percent towards moviegoers over 25 and just 34 percent towards moviegoers under 25. Previously, Birds of Prey had a similar 35 / 65 under-25 / over-25 split, but had a 51 percent female / 49 percent male split, while the under-25 and male demos for 2016’s Suicide Squad both represented 54 percent of that film’s audience. Clearly, many of the moviegoers who (at the time) were teens and young adults that helped drive 2016’s Suicide Squad have lost interest in the property in the five years that have passed since then. The top DMA markets for The Suicide Squad this weekend were Los Angeles, New York City, the California Bay Area, Dallas, Toronto, Chicago, Phoenix, Houston, Washington DC and Seattle. The Suicide Squad received a B+ rating on CinemaScore, which while solid, also suggests that the film isn’t going over quite as well with audiences as it has with critics. Both Birds of Prey and 2016’s Suicide Squad also received B+ ratings on CinemaScore.

The Suicide Squad was a bit more impressive internationally this weekend with an estimated $35.0 million from 69 markets. That brings the film’s international total to $45.7 million and current global haul to $72.2 million. Estimated international debuts for The Suicide Squad this weekend included $4.2 million in Russia, $2.6 million in South Korea, $2.2 million in Germany, $2.0 million in Mexico, $1.5 million in Brazil, $1.3 million in Spain, $1.2 million in Saudi Arabia, $1.1 million in Italy, $1.0 million in the United Arab Emirates and $1.0 million in Australia. Additional international totals for The Suicide Squad include a healthy $10.8 million in the United Kingdom and $3.4 million in France.

The Suicide Squad grossed an estimated $5.05 million globally from global IMAX screens this weekend, including $2.6 million domestically and $2.45 million internationally. To date, the global IMAX total for The Suicide Squad stands at $5.7 million (which represents 7.9 percent of the film’s overall global gross).

Before moving on, while I rarely recommend films in my box office pieces, I’m making a rare exception for The Suicide Squad and adding my voice to the choir of those who really enjoy the film. While I can also see why the film won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, I personally think it’s among the better films of its genre and it’s very highly recommended to anyone who is a fan of R-rated comic book adaptations in general.

Meanwhile, Disney’s Jungle Cruise was down one spot from last weekend to place in second with an estimated $15.69 million. Jungle Cruise was down 55 percent from last weekend’s stronger than expected start, which while still a sharp decline, also represented one of the better second weekend holds of any higher-profile film this summer. This weekend’s hold for Jungle Cruise is even stronger than it appears given that the film lost its IMAX screens to The Suicide Squad this weekend. The ten-day start for Jungle Cruise stands at $65.32 million. Clearly Jungle Cruise is going over very well with audiences (as opposed to the film’s fairly mixed reception with critics). The PG-13 rated Jungle Cruise may have also received a small bump this weekend from serving as this weekend’s top alternative to the R-rated The Suicide Squad. Even with three new wide releases entering the marketplace next weekend (Disney’s release of 20th Century’s Free Guy, United Artists Releasing’s release of MGM’s Respect and Sony’s Don’t Breathe 2), Jungle Cruise is highly likely to continue to hold up relatively well next weekend and beyond.

Internationally, Jungle Cruise took in an estimated $15.1 million from 49 markets this weekend. Through Sunday, respective totals for Jungle Cruise stand at $56.5 million internationally and $121.8 million globally. While Jungle Cruise is obviously out-performing The Suicide Squad domestically, the two films have been much closer to one another thus far internationally. Estimated international totals for Jungle Cruise through Sunday include $8.5 million in the United Kingdom, $5.9 million in Russia, $4.2 million in France, $4.0 million in Japan, $2.7 million in Saudi Arabia, $2.2 million in the United Arab Emirates, $2.0 million in Mexico, $2.0 million in Spain, $1.9 million in South Korea, $1.9 million in Hong Kong and $1.8 million in the Netherlands.

On the heels of last weekend’s sharp second weekend decline, Universal’s Old stabilized nicely this weekend by declining one spot and a solid 40 percent to place in third with an estimated $4.14 million. The hold was a bit surprising given the film’s apparent mixed word of mouth. With a 17-day total of $38.52 million, the modestly budgeted Old continues to have a very respectable run with the film’s modest budget in mind. Internationally, Old grossed an estimated $4.4 million this weekend from 46 markets. That brings the film’s international total to $26.7 million and current global take to $65.2 million.

Disney’s Black Widow followed closely behind in fourth place with an estimated $4.01 million. Black Widow was down a solid 38 percent from last weekend, as the film held up quite nicely this weekend, especially given the new direct competition from The Suicide Squad. During the midweek Black Widow became the highest grossing film domestically since re-opening, and through Sunday the film’s 31-day total stands at an estimated $174.36 million. Internationally, Black Widow also grossed an estimated $4.0 million this weekend. Respective totals for the film through Sunday stand at $185.4 million internationally and $359.8 million globally.

In their respective second weekends of release, Focus’ Stillwater claimed fifth place with an estimated $2.86 million and A24’s The Green Knight followed in sixth with an estimated $2.60 million. Critical reviews for The Green Knight have been stronger than those for Stillwater, but word of mouth among moviegoers clearly looks to be stronger for Stillwater than for The Green Knight, as Stillwater was down a solid 45 percent from last weekend, while The Green Knight fell a very sharp 62 percent. With that said, it should also be noted that The Green Knight was a stronger performer than Stillwater during the midweek. Respective estimated ten-day grosses stand at $12.17 million for The Green Knight and at $10.00 million for Stillwater. While neither film is lighting the box office on fire, the performances of both films have nonetheless been much needed welcome news for the theatrical specialty release market, which has struggled in general since re-opening.

Warner’s Space Jam: A New Legacy took seventh place with an estimated $2.48 million. After sharp declines each of the past two weekends; Space Jam: A New Legacy finally stabilized this weekend by declining a solid 43 percent. The 24-day total for Space Jam: A New Legacy stands at $65.65 million. Internationally, Space Jam: A New Legacy grossed an estimated $5.6 million this weekend from 67 markets. That brings the film’s international total to $69.8 million and current global total to $135.4 million.

Universal’s F9 continued to pad its international haul this weekend with an estimated $12.0 million from 61 markets. This weekend’s international performance was driven by an estimated $6.8 million start in Japan. To date, F9 has grossed $490.3 million internationally and $171.0 million domestically for a global total of $661.4 million. F9 remains the highest grossing Hollywood release internationally and globally since re-opening.

Read more at BoxOfficeReport.com

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