On Saturday, the first-ever National Cinema Day saw 3,000+ domestic movie theaters offer customers $3 tickets: any film, any showtime, any format. That included premium formats such as IMAX, 3D, D-Box, and ScreenX. As reported by NATO, preliminary numbers show that total grosses for that Saturday came to $24.3 million, a nine percent jump from the previous Saturday despite the discounted pricing.
[Read Boxoffice PRO’s coverage of the promotion, from the 501(c)(3) non-profit The Cinema Foundation, here.]
While that initiative certainly boosted Saturday’s receipts, a lack of major new releases still led to low grosses on Friday and Sunday, producing one of the worst box office weekends of the post-pandemic era.
Spider-Man: No Way Home
The weekend was led by Sony Pictures’ re-release of Spider-Man: No Way Home. Including 11 minutes of deleted scenes in an extended cut now subtitled The More Fun Stuff Version, this version debuted in first place with $6M.
It screened in 3,935 theaters, about 91% of its 4,336 theaters upon its original opening weekend.
December 2021’s original version earned $804.7M, the highest-grossing film of 2021 by more than triple its nearest competitor. (Namely, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings with $224.5M.) It earned its final $1M+ weekend in early April, though it continued to play in some cinemas until late June.
Top Gun: Maverick
With National Cinema Day enticing moviegoers with $3 tickets, Paramount’s action-adventure sequel Top Gun: Maverick gained 139% on Saturday, with the weekend averaging out to a 16% bump from the previous frame. Box office was up to an estimated $5.5M, landing the film in second place. That also marks the ninth biggest fifteenth weekend of all time.
The film also expanded slightly from 2,962 theaters last weekend to 3,113 this frame.
Globally, Maverick gained $1.2M from 315 Imax screens, making it the tenth highest-grossing Imax release of all time, globally.
Last weekend’s top film, Sony Pictures’ horror The Invitation, debuted in first place with $6.8M. That was the lowest-grossing first place film since Spiral in late May 2021.
In The Invitation’s sophomore frame, it falls -30% to $4.705M and fourth place.
Compared to some other prominent PG-13 horror films of the past decade, that sophomore drop was milder than:
- 2016’s Lights Out (-50%)
- 2019’s Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (-52%)
- 2012’s The Woman in Black (-52%)
- 2013’s Mama (-54%)
- 2018’s Truth or Dare (-58%)
[Read Boxoffice PRO’s interview with The Invitation director Jessica M. Thompson here.]
Honk For Jesus: Save Your Soul
Focus Features’ church satire Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul started in 14th place with $1.44M.
In addition to debuting in only 1,879, about half the reach of this weekend’s top films, its box office was hurt by debuting day-and-date simultaneously in cinemas and on Peacock.
62% of the film’s opening weekend was female, with 68% at least 30 years old.
DC League of Super-Pets
Possibly the biggest beneficiary of National Cinema day was Warner Bros. release DC League of Super-Pets, box office for which increased 31.96% from the previous weekend. It stands at third place on its sixth weekend of release (up from sixth place last weekend), trailing second-day finisher Top Gun: Maverick by a mere $50,000. Fellow family release Minions: The Rise of Gru also saw an increase from last weekend, this one just shy of 16%.
In addition to No Way Home in first place, another theatrical re-release cracked the top-10 this weekend – this one from decades, rather than months, ago.
Universal’s IMAX and 3D re-release of 1975’s suspense thriller classic Jaws opened in 10th place with an estimated $1.2M from 285 domestic Imax screens and a total three-day estimated gross of $2.3M, putting it
That Universal figure is 114.9% above August’s Imax re-release of another Steven Spielberg classic, E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial ($1,072,350).
In an era before exact box office earnings often weren’t recorded to the exact dollar, the original Jaws earned an estimated $260M total. That was more than double the #2 film of 1975, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest ($108.9M).
Total box office this weekend came in around $49.23M, which is:
- -5.3% below last weekend’s total ($52.0M), when The Invitation led with $6.8M.
- -19.95% below the equivalent weekend in 2021 ($61.5M), when Candyman led with $22.0M.
- -46.25% below the equivalent weekend in the last pre-pandemic year 2019 ($91.6M), when Angel Has Fallen led for a second consecutive frame with $11.7M
Sunday’s Studio Weekend Estimates
|Title||Estimated Weekend Gross||% change||Locations||Average||Cume||Weekend||Distributor|
|Spider-Man: No Way Home (re-release)||6,000,000||3935||1,525||810,793,000||38||Sony|
|Top Gun Maverick||5,500,000|
|DC League of Super Pets||5,450,000|
|Minions: The Rise Of Gru||3,130,000|
|Thor: Love And Thunder||2,446,000||-7.6%||2090||1,170||339,962,296||9||Disney|
|Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero||2,411,000||-47.8%||2468||977||34,863,492||3||Crunchyroll|