The Invisible Man Makes Appearance in First
The calendar has been littered with low-budget horror releases the first two months of 2020, with none enjoying particularly strong showings at the box office. But that changed last weekend (Feb.28-Mar. 1) with Universal Pictures/Blumhouse’s The Invisible Man, which rode a wave of strong buzz and critical reviews to a solid $28.21 million opening.
As the only wide opener over the weekend, the reboot benefitted from a strong marketing push that made it feel like the first event-sized horror film to debut this year. Importantly, critics gave the film high marks, while the PG-13 rating opened it up to a younger demographic and star Elisabeth Moss – best known for her roles in acclaimed TV series such as The Handmaid’s Tale and Mad Men – gave the film an air of respectability for more discerning viewers. Opening day audiences also gave it a good score.
Fellow Blumhouse releases with similar debuts include Happy Death Day, Insidious: The Last Key and The Purge: Anarchy, and they finished with domestic grosses from $55-$71 million, suggesting great things for this $7 million production.
Last weekend’s debut was similar to that of 2000’s Hollow Man, a modernized adaptation of the classic H.G. Wells novel and reboot of the famed Universal horror/sci-fi series, although that film, which debuted with $26.41 million, was far less acclaimed and much more expensive, with a reported budget of $95 million.
Finishing in second place was Paramount Pictures’ Sonic the Hedgehog, which slipped 37.9% to $16.26 million in its third weekend. With a domestic total of $128.56 million, it is now the third highest-grossing video game adaptation to date not adjusting for inflation after 2001’s Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, which finished its run with $131.16 million in North America.
Coming in third was Walt Disney Studios/20th Century Studios’ The Call of the Wild with $13.36 million in its second weekend, a drop of 46.1% from its better-than-expected $24.79 million debut the previous weekend. The family adventure has $46.02 million to date, although it has lots of ground to make up given its reported $100 million-plus budget.
Making a surprise showing in fourth place was FUNimation Entertainment’s My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising, a superhero anime based on the popular manga series. It took in $5.80 million in its North American debut. Heroes Rising, which previously grossed $15.10 million in Japan, is the second film adaptation of the Japanese comic after My Hero Academia: Two Heroes, which grossed a total of $5.75 million domestically in 2018.
Since opening on Wednesday, Heroes Rising has grossed $9.17 million in North America. That already makes it FUNimation’s second-highest grossing film domestically behind 2019’s Dragon Ball Super: Broly with $30.71 and topping the $8.01 million domestic total for Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection “F”.
Finishing in fifth place was Sony Picture’s Bad Boys for Life with $4.35 million, a slip of 25.5% in its seventh weekend. It now has $197.42 million in North America and will soon cross the $200 million mark.
Placing in sixth was Warner Bros. Pictures’ Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey, which fell 39.7% to $4.10 million in its fourth weekend for a domestic total of $78.79 million to date.
After a healthy $2.61 million opening the previous weekend, truTV/WarnerMedia’s Impractical Jokers: The Movie saw a wide expansion in its second weekend and took in $3.55 million in seventh place. That was a 36.0% jump. The comedy has $6.62 million to date in North America.
Universal’s 1917 finished in eighth with $2.71 million, a 35.8% drop, bringing the domestic total for the WWI drama to $155.91 million through the end 10 weekend. Closely behind in ninth and 10th were horror holdovers STX Entertainment’s Brahms: The Boy II Sony/Blumhouse’s Fantasy Island, which took in $2.62 million and $2.33 million in their second and third weekends, respectively. The Boy II dropped 55.0%, while Fantasy Island fell 45.4%. The domestic total for the STX sequel stands at a disappointing $9.77 million, while the Sony adaptation has earned $24.06 million in North America.
This coming weekend sees the debut of Disney/Pixar’s Onward and Warner Bros.’ The Way Back starring Ben Affleck.
The top 10 films grossed $83.29 million. That is 3.8% behind the previous weekend’s $86.59 million total. It was also 11.7% behind last year’s $94.35 million, when How to Train Your Dragon: Hidden World led for a second weekend with $30.03 million. Total box office year-to-date stands at $1.56 billion. That is 6.4% ahead of last year.
Feb. 28-Mar. 1, 2020
|This Week||Last Week||Movie||Weekend Gross||Cumulative Gross||Weeks|
|1||New||The Invisible Man||$28.21M||$28.21M||1|
|2||1||Sonic the Hedgehog||$16.26M||$12.56M||3|
|3||2||The Call of the Wild||$13.36M||$46.02M||2|
|4||New||My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising||$5.80M||$9.17M||1|
|5||4||Bad Boys for Life||$4.35M||$197.42M||7|
|6||3||Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey||$4.10M||$78.79M||4|
|7||11||Impractical Jokers: The Movie||$3.55M||$6.62M||2|
|9||5||Brahms: The Boy II||$2.62M||$9.77M||2|
Editor-in-Chief Mark Heckathorn is a journalist, movie buff and foodie. He oversees DC on Heels editorial operations as well as strategic planning and staff development. Reach him with story ideas or suggestions at dcoheditor (at) gmail (dot) com.