Box Office Report: 'Black Panther' Joins Exclusive Club of All-Timers

Box Office Report: 'Black Panther' Joins Exclusive Club of All-Timers

Feb 19, 2018

Black PantherHere's your estimated 3-day box office returns (new releases bolded):

1. Black Panther - $192.0 million ($192.0 million total)

2. Peter Rabbit - $17.2 million ($48.2 million total)

3. Fifty Shades Freed - $16.9 million ($76.1 million total)

4. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle - $7.9 million ($377.6 million total)

5. The 15:17 to Paris - $7.6 million ($25.4 million total)

6. The Greatest Showman - $5.1 million ($154.4 million total)

7. Early Man - $3.1 million ($3.1 million total)

8. Maze Runner: The Death Cure - $2.5 million ($54.0 million total)

9. Winchester - $2.2 million ($21.8 million total)

10. Samson - $1.9 million ($1.9 million total)


The Big Stories

Remember when the early projections for Black Panther had it hovering around a HUGE opening of around $135 million? That was cute. Sure, that was several weeks ago and the anticipation only grew daily, but it is often amusing to see the lengths that studios and tracking services will hedge their bets. After all, if you aim too high and miss, box office analysts and prognosticators throw out the ol’ “D” word. Well there is nothing disappointing about Black Panther’s opening, its critical response (97% at Rotten Tomatoes) and that of audiences worldwide as we are, undoubtedly, looking at one of the biggest box office stories for the rest of 2018.


But Where Is Nastassja Kinski?

It was just a year ago that Jordan Peele’s Get Out started its run to become one of the biggest box office stories of 2017. That run took 237 days to reach the $176 million it is now credited with here in America; a number that more than made it the highest-grossing film ever by an African-American director. It surpassed F. Gary Gray’s Straight Outta Compton on April 8, 2017. Eighteeen days later, Gray reclaimed the title with The Fate of the Furious after just 13 days in release. On February 20, 2018, Ryan Coogler will now own that title. With $192 million in its first three days (good enough for the fifth best three-day ever if the estimates hold) Black Panther has already passed Get Out’s entire run. (By Tuesday or Wednesday it will pass Justice League.) Add in another expected $25 million or so on President’s Day and the film is no longer limited by specific labels except the one known as "all-time."

The top eight openers of all-time all reached the $400 million club. That is the easy part to predict about Black Panther’s success. Captain America: Civil War and Iron Man 3 finished with $408 and $409 million, respectively. Avengers: Age of Ultron made $459 million. Black Panther will be around $12 million ahead of that film’s pace after Monday. The holiday weekend certainly gives it a boost but $450 million is definitely in the cards. Can it match last year’s Beauty and the Beast, though, which cracked $504 million? That film did not see a 50% drop at the box office until its 12th week, maintaining a very respectable drop of 42.1-49.8% in its first four weekends. Panther could be $30 million ahead of the Beast after Monday and even with a 53% drop in weekend two, it would still be in the ballpark of matching it into the next weekend. The number it should be most interested right now is 2.60. Only three of those aforementioned eight openers failed to reach that multiple over their first weekend. They are also the three Marvel films represented on that list. That aside, it’s still early but there are very good odds that Black Panther is going to become the 10th film to join the $500 million crowd.


Tales of the Top Ten

Last week’s top film, Fifty Shades Freed, fell behind the rabbit but thanks to a $10 million-plus Valentine’s Day gross, the conclusion to the trilogy looks like it will indeed pass $100 million. It has made $266 million worldwide to date. The rabbit – Peter Rabbit – had a solid hold with a lack of kid-friendly entertainment to challenge it. The 58%-approved allergy community-offending family film has passed the 100%-approved Paddington 2 now with $48 million. Meanwhile, with just $3.1 million over the weekend, Aardman Studio’s Early Man may not even pass Forever My Girl at the box office. Even with an 81% from critics, Lionsgate once again could not find a way to successfully market an animated film to a market always clamoring for it. Their last Aardman release could not crack $20 million. Last fall’s My Little Pony made just $21.8 million. In fact, Lionsgate’s highest-grossing animated release was, of all things, Alpha and Omega with $25.1 million.

Another of the big stories of 2017 just won’t go away and is still headed for another milestone. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle will pass $380 million this week and leap over Revenge of the Sith, Finding Nemo and Deathly Hallows Part 2 to join the Top 30 domestic grossers of all-time. Frozen finally passed $400 million on its 22nd weekend of wide release. This is Jumanji’s ninth such weekend and it has grossed over $900 million worldwide. Fox’s The Greatest Showman has now bested La La Land with over $154 million, making it the fourth highest-grossing musical ever. Chicago is third with $170.6 million. La La Land grossed over $446 million worldwide while The Greatest Showman is at $325 million. Fox also has Steven Spielberg’s The Post hanging in there with $77 million domestic and another $57 million internationally, as well as Maze Runner: The Death Cure, a bit of a bust in the States with $54 million but another $186 million elsewhere. The Shape of Water and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri have also become the ninth and 10th highest-grossing domestic releases in Fox Searchlight’s history. Finally, Pureflix’s Samson muscled its way into the Top Ten with $1.9 million, which is on the low-end of their 1,000-plus theater openings.

Erik Childress can be heard each week evaluating box office on WGN Radio with Nick Digilio as well as on Business First AM with Angela Miles and his Movie Madness Podcast.

[Box office figures via Box Office Mojo.]

Categories: Features, Geek, Animation
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