Box Office: The Bad Guys do good things to take the top spot

by Natalie Kiser

I predicted that The Bad Guys would debut at the top of the box office but what I didn’t predict was how well it would perform. The Dreamworks Animation release exceeded box office expectations this weekend and it proved that families are eager to get back to the movies.

The Bad Guys grossed $24 million over the weekend which exceeded its $15 million box office tracking and my $17 million predictions. I think Universal distribution boss, Jim Orr, said it best: “The very positive critical and audience reaction to The Bad Guys echoes the overperformance of our title at the domestic box office this weekend and deservedly so as this is a broad, action-packed, charming film with clever comedy for the entire family.” The film came into the weekend with great reviews and that helped sell it to moviegoers that may have been on the fence about seeing it. This is also another win for family films following the success of Sing 2 back in December and Sonic The Hedgehog 2. Families are returning to movie theaters and The Bad Guys goes a long way to prove that point.

In second place we find another family offering in Sonic The Hedgehog 2, which grossed $15.2 million this weekend. That’s a drop of 48% which is a much better hold than its 58% dip from last weekend. The film faced direct competition from The Bad Guys and still managed to hang on decently. To date, Sonic The Hedgehog 2 has grossed $145.8 million which means it’s THIS close to topping the $148 million+ domestic gross of its predecessor.

Falling hard to third place is Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore which grossed $14 million over the weekend. That’s a steep decline of 67% and now that five-movie plan is looking like it’s in more danger of not happening. To date, the film has grossed $67.1 million at the domestic box office and it’s already going to earn the title of being the lowest-grossing film in the Harry Potter universe.

In fourth place, we find The Northman which grossed $12 million this weekend. That exceeded my $10.5 million predictions but it still shows that the critically lauded film didn’t break out beyond fans of the director Robert Eggers. The film received a “B” CinemaScore from opening day moviegoers which does not bode well for potential word of mouth down the road for a film like this. The Northman will see a mighty fall next weekend but I still think it’s destined to become a cult classic down the road.

Rounding out the top five is The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent which took in $7.1 million this weekend. That’s below what the film was tracking heading into the weekend as its very niche premise just didn’t connect with casual moviegoers. The Nicolas Cage release also played well to critics which made this a rare weekend of having all three wide releases earning critical praise. This weekend just goes to show you that all of these ideas might not connect with casual moviegoers on the big screen but I suspect this film, like The Northman, will go on to become a cult classic.

What are YOUR thoughts on this weekend’s box office results?