Weekend Wrap Up - a look at this week’s Industry Updates

June 7, 2021

Memorial Day weekend delivered an amazing start to the summer blockbuster drumroll, with A Quiet Place II setting a pandemic record opening and matching that of its 2018 predecessor. In its second weekend, Paramount’s horror film raked in another $19.5M – a holdover of 41% from last weekend’s three-day haul (standard for horror movies pre-pandemic). Accumulating a total of $89M thus farA Quiet Place II should have no trouble crossing the $100M milestone domestically. Since the pandemic, we have not had a movie surpass that mark (Godzilla vs Kong is close with $99.1M currently). Achieving this would be another sign of greater box-office recovery.


Following up on Paramount’s lead, Warner Bros. released their own horror universe follow-up, The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It. Yet another HBO Max day-and-date release, the third film in the core Conjuring series earned first place with $24M – and becomes the largest R-rated movie since the pandemic. This opening meets expectations for a film that follows 2016’s The Conjuring 2, which opened to $40M. The Conjuring’s debut also makes sense considering the latest spin-off from the Conjuring universe, 2019’s Annabelle Comes Home – which briefly featured The Conjuring’s leads – opened to a Wed-Sun of $31M. All things considered, these numbers are healthy for the horror genre and adds another win for Warner Bros. The studio has spent 10 of 23 weeks in the number 1 position at the box-office this year.


Horror movies are this week’s headliners, but this weekend’s box-office total of $66M reflects more than just two films. Younger moviegoers were treated to the debut of Spirit Untamed, Universal’s follow-up to 2002’s Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron and the Spirit Riding Free Netflix series. It scored $6.2M – in-line with a similar film, 2017’s My Little Pony, and once again showing that parents are ready to take their kids back to theaters. Cruising in her own lane, Cruella picked up another $11.2M for this weekend’s third place. That’s a hold of 52% over last weekend’s 3-day debut – decent considering that it has no competition other than its streaming counterpart on Disney Plus.


For the first time in more than a year, there are three films grossing more than $10M in a single weekend at the box-office. Taking into account that new releases like In The Heights (6/11), Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway are on their way this weekend – with The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard (6/16) and F9 (6/25) coming shortly after that – we should continue to see box-office weekend totals that show a semblance of pre-covid normalcy. 


Expect that benchmark to grow further! With a steady stream of fresh content on the schedule every week, moviegoers will have the most options to pick from at the theater than they’ve had all pandemic. The industry is not at the finish line yet, but it definitely feels like the worse is behind us.

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