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Aquaman sequel rises to first place at the box office

“Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” led a slew of new movies at the box office the weekend before Christmas Monday. Jason Momoa-starring DC and Warner Bros. The superhero sequel grossed an estimated $28.1 million in its first three days of release in 3,706 locations in North America. Domestic ticket sales on Monday are expected to be around $40 million.

That will continue despite a host of new offerings, including the family-friendly animated movie “Exodus,” the R-rated romantic comedy “Nobody But You,” the wrestling tragedy “Iron Claw” and the tear-jerking ghost in “We Are All Aliens,” a quieter pre-holiday frame at the box office Perhaps the audience going to the movies had other priorities than just going to the movies.

It’s never great for Hollywood or theaters when Christmas Eve falls on a big day of the weekend, but the last time Christmas fell on a Monday in 2017, “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” topped the four-day charts with $71.5 million. second weekend.

These will be accompanied by more new films on Christmas Day, which often brings huge crowds to cinemas; These include the big-budget musical adaptation of “The Color Purple,” Michael Mann’s racing movie “Ferrari” and George Clooney’s adaptation of “Ferrari.” rowing drama “Boys in the Boat.” Everyone also needs a boost between Christmas and New Year, which is traditionally a lucrative time for movie theaters.

But none compare to some of the biggest holiday winners, like “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” “Avatar” and “Spider-Man: No Way Home.” It wasn’t lost on social media that Patty Jenkins’ Star Wars movie “Rogue Squadron” will be released this weekend.

“Seven openings in four days is unusual,” said Paul Dergarabedian, Comscore’s senior media analyst.

“Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” is estimated to cost approximately $200 million to produce, not including marketing and promotional costs. The first film opened to $67.8 million in 2018 and grossed almost $1.2 billion worldwide. Dergarabedian noted that the first film also achieved more than 70 percent at the international box office.

The “Aquaman” opening is, for DC superhero movies, “Shazam! Wrath of the Gods, “The Flash” and “Blue Beetle” are included as the studio phases out this slate to meet James Gunn’s vision for the future. “Aquaman 2” was the last “remnant” of the previous administration.

Warner Bros.’ studio also has “Wonka,” the No. 2 movie of the weekend, and “The Color Purple,” one of the big Christmas openers, a buffet of big movies that movie theaters desperately need. A film from the Walt Disney Company or Paramount. Until Monday, Warner Bros. It will probably take three places in the top five.

“Warners has something for everyone,” said Jeff Goldstein, the studio’s head of domestic distribution. “There’s plenty of vacation time to see all three.”

In its second weekend, “Wonka” earned an estimated $17.7 million over the weekend and $26.1 million including Monday, bringing its total domestic earnings to $83.6 million.

Third place went to Illumination and Universal’s “Exodus,” a PG-rated animated adventure film about a family of mallards traveling to the South. Voice actors include Kumail Najiani, Elizabeth Banks and Awkwafina. An estimated $12.3 million was generated from 3,761 locations in North America through Sunday, with that figure likely to rise to $17.1 million by the end of Monday. The global total through Sunday stands at an estimated $34.3 million and could rise further with children out of school.

“’Exodus’ flew into theaters with really, really exciting audience reactions that point to what we think is going to be great not just over the holidays but into next year as well,” said Jim Orr, Universal’s president of domestic distribution.

Other than Disney re-releasing some Pixar titles earlier in the year, there won’t be any new direct competition until “Kung Fu Panda 4” comes out on March 8.

At fifth place was the Telugu-language action movie “Salaar: Chapter 1—Ceasefire,” which earned $5.5 million from 802 theaters alone. The top 10 included another Hindi-language film, “Dunki,” which earned $2.7 million from 686 locations. The top 10 also included two Japanese films, “Godzilla Minus One” and “The Boy and the Heron.”

Female viewers helped the Glen Powell and Sydney Sweeney romantic comedy “Anyone But You” land in fourth place with an estimated $6.2 million from its first three days and nearly $9 million including Monday. Directed by Will Gluck and loosely inspired by “Much Ado About Nothing,” the film has sharply divided some critics, with some crying foul and those celebrating the return of a beloved genre that seems to have recently been relegated to Netflix. Audiences gave it a B+ CinemaScore.

A24’s “Iron Claw,” about the Von Erich wrestling family grappling with tragedy, opened on 2,774 screens to a wave of good reviews praising Zac Efron’s transformative lead performance. The studio estimates its three-day earnings at $5.1 million, with that figure expected to rise to $7.5 million by the end of Monday. It received an A-Cinema Score from audiences; This is the highest score to date for the studio behind “Everything Everywhere All at the Same Time.” The studio also has Jonathan Glazer’s “The Zone of Interest” on six screens, which grossed $89,931 over the weekend.

Starring Andrew Scott and Paul Mescal, Searchlight Pictures’ “We Are All Strangers” opened in four theaters in New York and Los Angeles this weekend, averaging a strong $33,034 per theater. Yorgos Lanthimos’ gothic black comedy “Poor Things” also expanded to 800 theaters and grossed $2.1 million.

“No matter where it ends up at the box office on 31st, whether it hits $9 billion or is very close to it, this is a boom time for moviegoers,” Dergarabedian said. “The top 10 reads like the greatest hits of any genre of cinema.”

Estimated ticket sales at U.S. and Canadian theaters from Friday through Sunday, according to Comscore. Final domestic figures, including Christmas Day, will be released on Tuesday.

1. “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom,” $28.1 million.

2. “Wonka,” $17.7 million.

3. “Migration,” $12.3 million.

4. “Everybody But You,” $6.2 million.

5. “Salaar: Part 1 – Armistice,” $5.5 million.

6. “Iron Claw,” $5.1 million.

7. “The Hunger Games: Ballard of Songbirds and Snakes” $3.2 million

8. “The Boy and the Heron” $3.2 million.

9. “Godzilla Minus One,” $2.7 million.

10. “Dunk,” $2.7 million.

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