“Despicable Me 3” and “Baby Driver” Dominated the Holiday Weekend


the box office-2

Box Office 7.5

5-Day Weekend

  Weekend Opening Weekend Current Gross
Despicable Me 3 $99m $99m $99m
Baby Driver $29.9m $29.9m $39m
Wonder Woman $24.07m $103.2m $354.6m
Transformers: The Last Knight $24.05m $44.6m $109.1m
Cars 3 $14.1m $53.6m $125.3m

The 5-day Independence Day holiday weekend went more or less as expected, although several films performed higher than many of the predictions had them making. Two newcomers, Despicable Me 3, the fourth installment in Universal and Illumination’s Despicable Me franchise (following the first two films and the Minions spin-off), and Edgar Wright’s new original film, Baby Driver, led the weekend, both overperforming (at least in their five-day earnings).

Over the course of five days, Despicable Me 3 opened to nearly $100 million, which puts it as the second-highest opening of the franchise following Minions‘ $115 million opening. However, its three-day opening of $72.4 million knocks it down to third-highest, coming in behind Despicable Me 2′s $83.5 million and slightly below industry expectations for the weekend. Regardless, it’s still a decent showing for the film, especially as deep as it is into the franchise. As a whole, the franchise has now made $2.9 billion worldwide and will cross the $3 billion threshold in due time as Despicable Me 3 continues its theater run. As per usual, the film is already doing big business overseas. Internationally, the film has made $142 million, bringing its global total to $241 million. In the franchise’s history, only Minions has crossed $1 billion globally, but Despicable Me 2 got close.

despicable-me-3-bannerUniversal Pictures

Next up, writer-director Wright saw his biggest opening yet with the music-based heist film Baby Driver. The film had already brought in $9 million thanks to its early release last week and then managed to bring in another astonishing $30 million over the holiday weekend. Over the three-days, the film made $20.5 million, which is still the biggest opening for any of Wright’s previous four feature, theatrical films. The next highest is 2010’s Scott Pilgrim vs the World, which grossed $10.6 million in its premiere weekend. Furthermore, Baby Driver’s current domestic total of $39 million is also already more than any of Wright’s previous films domestic totals. To continue the good news, Baby Drive has made $45 million globally so far, which is already more than halfway to Wright’s best-performing global film, Hot Fuzz, which made $80.6 million worldwide when all was said and done. So to say Baby Drive is a summer hit, or a grand success story for Wright, is a bit of an understatement.

Both Wonder Woman and Transformers: The Last Knight brought in about the same over the weekend, but these intakes produce two very different stories. Wonder Woman, in its fifth weekend, dropped only 36.9 percent from three-day weekend to three-day weekend (while the ticket sales from the additional two days of the holiday weekend drop that percentage down to virtually zero), while The Last Knight, in only its second weekend, dropped a little over 62 percent. By its second weekend, Wonder Woman had surpassed $200 million. The Last Knight, meanwhile, is still $90 million — and several weekends away — from hitting $200 million. At $718 million worldwide, Wonder Woman is less than $30 million away from overtaking Suicide Squad. While Wonder Woman has definitely far exceeded expectations, surpassing Batman v Superman‘s $873 million worldwide and possibly reaching $1 billion still seems like a steep hill to climb but, after all, Wonder Woman is the Amazonian warrior who survived No Man’s Land.

Optimus Prime in TRANSFORMERS: THE LAST KNIGHT, from Paramount Pictures.Paramount Pictures

The Last Knight, following in the tradition of past Transformers films, is seeing most of its success overseas. So far, it’s made $339 million from foreign markets, bringing its global total to $448.5 million. The film is still ranking far below the rest of the movies in the franchise, but it’s also only in its second weekend. While domestically it likely won’t see any big numbers, or perhaps even surpass Age of Extinction‘s $245 million, but it could very well soar globally and become one of the better performing films in the franchises in that bracket.

Finally, Cars 3 dropped nearly 60 percent in its third weekend. The number looks a little better when you add in all five days of the long weekend, but it’s still showing signs of struggle as the third installment in the Pixar franchise. Worldwide, it’s at $178 million, which is trailing quite far behind Cars‘ $462 million and Cars 2‘s $562 million, and the domestic numbers aren’t doing much better.

Elsewhere, the R-rated comedy The House starring Will Ferrel and Amy Poehler struggled, making $8.7 million over three days and $11.9 million over the full five days, which is about as expected, but still quite low. The Beguiled and The Big Sick, two indie films with much anticipation, are continuing to expand their theater counts and performing very well. Once they’re both in far more theaters, it will be interesting to see how they do overall.

(Source: boxoffice.com, boxofficemojo.com. Figures represent numbers at time of writing, and may have changed.)

 | Associate Editor

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