WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: Mortal Kombat Wins with $22.5M Bow, Demon Slayer Impresses with $19.5M Debut

Photo Credits: Warner Bros. ("Mortal Kombat"); Sony Pictures / FUNimation ("Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train")

The domestic box office showed yet another sign of recovery this weekend: two new titles opened above $15 million respectively. Warner Bros.’ action video game adaptation Mortal Kombat topped the box office with a $22.5 million haul from 3,073 screens. It was followed by Japansese anime import Demon Slayer -Kimetsu no Yaiba- The Movie:Mugen Train, which exceeded all expectations in what is estimated to be a $19.5 million opening weekend. It is the first time during the pandemic the domestic market has welcomed two simultaneous new releases at this level. According to estimates, this weekend could become the highest-grossing frame during the pandemic at the domestic box office––the first in over a year with over $50 million in cumulative ticket sales.

Mortal Kombat‘s scored the highest debut for an R-rated movie during the pandemic and the second largest opening weekend behind Warner Bros.’ Godzilla vs Kong. Warner Bros. titles have led the domestic box office in nine of 2021’s seventeen weekends to date, accounting for 48 percent of the domestic market share as rival studios continue to delay high-profile titles to later in the year.

Los Angeles and New York represented the film’s top two DMAs for Mortal Kombat. Six of the film’s top ten performing theaters were located in the state of Texas.

Mortal Kombat
Top Domestic DMAs – Opening Weekend

  1. Los Angeles, CA
  2. New York, NY
  3. Dallas, TX
  4. Houston, TX
  5. Chicago, IL
  6. Phoenix, AZ
  7. San Francisco, CA
  8. Atlanta, GA
  9. Orlando, FL
  10. Philadelphia, PA

Mortal Kombat
Top Domestic Locations – Opening Weekend

  1. AMC Burbank Los Angeles, CA
  2. Santikos Palladium San Antonio, TX
  3. Cinemark Tinseltown El Paso, TX
  4. Santikos Casa Blanca San Antonio, TX
  5. AMC Orange Los Angeles, CA
  6. Cinemark Pharr Town Center, TX
  7. AMC Empire New York, NY
  8. Cinemark Century 16 Corpus Christi, TX
  9. AMC Gulf Pointe Houston, TX
  10. MC Southlake Pavilion Atlanta, GA

Imax screenings represented 11 percent of the Mortal Kombat‘s overall domestic gross, contributing $2.5 million in North America. Globally, Mortal Kombat has earned a total of $4.3 million on Imax.

Mortal Kombat opened day-and-date on HBO Max, and while Warner Bros. did not provide home viewership figures it did indicate the film earned $2 million from its Canadian PVOD release, where a significant portion of the country’s theaters remain closed.

Mortal Kombat added $6.3 million from 36 markets to raise its overseas tally to $27.6 million. The film opened to $3.2 million in Australia, becoming the third-highest rated R debut of all time in the country. Russia is the film’s second-highest performing market with $10.2 million after three weeks in release. Mortal Kombat has grossed $50.1 million worldwide and is scheduled to expand to the UK on May 17, Brazil on May 20, and Japan on June 18.

Warner Bros. set a major global box office milestone this weekend with its other major title currently in release, Godzilla vs. Kong, crossing the $400 million benchmark. The kaiju showdown finished in third place at the domestic box office this weekend with $4.2 million from 2,856 screens while adding $5.7 million from 41 overseas markets. Godzilla vs. Kong has grossed a total of $86.6 domestically and $320 million overseas for a $406.6 global cume. Top markets are led by China ($183.1 million), followed by North America (U.S. & Canada, $86.6 million), Australia ($20.1 million), Mexico ($18.2 million), and Taiwan ($12.4 million).

Demon Slayer is expected to finish the weekend around $19.5 million from 1,600 locations, totaling a robust per screen average of $4,029. The movie made the most out of the current market conditions by claiming premium auditoriums in 4DX, Dolby, and Imax formats that would have been otherwise difficult to secure.

Demon Slayer‘s impressive opening weekend was enough to secure it the seventh spot among all anime titles at the domestic box office. The film came in after a record-setting run in its native Japan, where it opened in October 2020 to become the highest-grossing film of all time in the market. The title’s North American run is being handled by Aniplex of America and Funimation. With this result, distributor Funimation now counts on seven of the top twenty highest-grossing anime titles in the domestic market.

The few best picture nominees still in theatrical release experienced a negligible Oscars bump leading to Sunday’s Academy Awards. A24’s Minari took in $141k from 704 screens to hit $2.7 million. Sony Pictures Classics’ The Father grossed $73k from 575 screens to reach $1.7 million. Focus Features’ Promising Young Woman took in $70k from 744 screens for a $6.4 million total. Warner Bros.’ Judas and the Black Messiah added $38k from 714 screens to hit $5.4 million.

Title Estimated weekend % change Locations Location change Average Total Weekend Distributor
Mortal Kombat $22,515,000   3,073   $7,327 $22,515,000 1 Warner Bros.
Demon Slayer The Movie: Mugen Train $19,500,000   1,605   $12,150 $19,500,000 1 Funimation
Godzilla vs. Kong $4,200,000 -46% 2,856 -145 $1,471 $86,576,000 4 Warner Bros.
Nobody $1,860,000 -26% 2,252 -153 $826 $21,671,720 5 Universal
Raya and the Last Dragon $1,680,000 -13% 1,819 -126 $924 $39,844,169 8 Walt Disney
The Unholy $1,400,000 -32% 1,835 -222 $763 $11,545,129 4 Sony Pictures
Tom and Jerry $650,000 -40% 1,930 -98 $337 $43,472,000 9 Warner Bros.
Together Together $522,440   665   $786 $522,440 1 Bleecker Street
In the Earth $204,000 -60% 571 -523 $357 $894,665 2 Neon
The Croods: A New Age $191,000 -37% 1,156 -13 $165 $57,339,623 22 Universal
Voyagers $170,000 -78% 1,278 -718 $133 $2,956,536 3 Lionsgate
Minari $141,000 1% 704 -41 $200 $2,710,000 20 A24
Chaos Walking $112,500 -46% 1,071 -171 $105 $13,158,685 8 Lionsgate
The Marksman $70,000 -57% 222 -109 $315 $15,546,574 15 Open Road
Promising Young Woman $70,000 -30% 744 108 $94 $6,449,795 18 Focus Features
Judas and the Black Messiah $38,000 -33% 714 -69 $53 $5,422,000 11 Warner Bros.
SAS: Red Notice $37,000 -53% 151 -38 $245 $146,329 2 Vertical Entertainment
Wrong Turn $35,827 -26% 46 -17 $779 $1,177,031 13 Saban Films
The War with Grandpa $25,327 -9% 195 -20 $130 $21,173,287 29 101 Studios
News of the World $10,000 -62% 92 -51 $109 $12,667,350 18 Universal
Gunda $8,400 67% 10 5 $840 $51,180 2 Neon
Photo Credits: Warner Bros. ("Mortal Kombat"); Sony Pictures / FUNimation ("Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train")