Saturday Update: Reports of The Meg‘s domestic under-performance have been greatly exaggerated as the campy end-of-summer pic exploded with $16.5 million on opening day Friday, including Thursday night’s take. That sets the weekend on course for what should be in the vicinity of a $40 million debut.
Key comparisons for the domestic first day are listed below as the film is now on course to become the biggest shark movie since 2004’s Shark Tale ($47.6 million opening / $160.9 million total), and likely the second biggest live-action shark flick of all-time behind the original masterpiece, Jaws ($260 million before adjusting for inflation).
Audiences were clearly craving one last ounce of summer popcorn fun in ways pre-release metrics simply didn’t catch. The Meg consistently performed at very modest levels across social media and in traditional industry tracking based on comparison titles, giving little indication that an opening weekend far north of $20 million was possible until actual pre-sales suggested an over-performance could be on the table. Clearly, it was.
Domestic comparisons thus far, followed by an overseas update from the studio:
- 78 percent ahead of Skyscraper‘s opening day ($9.25 million)
- 43 percent ahead of Rampage‘s opening day ($11.54 million)
- 140 percent ahead of The Shallows‘ opening day ($6.88 million)
- 153 percent ahead of Into the Storm‘s opening day ($6.53 million)
- 183 percent ahead of Deep Blue Sea‘s opening day ($5.83 million) / 55 percent ahead when adjusted for 2018 ticket prices ($10.63 million)
Internationally, Warner Bros. reports the film had a similarly strong debut in China where it opened to $16.2 million on Friday and looks to be around $16.1 million for Saturday, giving it a two-day total of $32.4 million in that country alone. Excluding China, international estimates stand at $26.7 million for Friday with a running cume of $34.5 million. The film is currently open in 42 markets.
Meanwhile, Mission: Impossible – Fallout added $5.3 million to begin its third frame, standing at an excellent $147.3 million domestically as it paces toward what is now expected to be around $19 million this weekend.
Slender Man posted $4.85 million on opening day as it heads toward a weekend north of $10 million, while BlacKkKlansman earned a strong $3.6 million from 1,512 locations and should be able to lock down close to $10 million for its debut frame.
Early weekend estimates are below with updated studio estimates to follow on Sunday.
Early Weekend Estimates (Domestic)
FRI, AUG. 10 – SUN, AUG. 12
|1||The Meg||$40,000,000||—||4,118||—||$9,713||$40,000,000||1||Warner Bros.|
|2||Mission: Impossible – Fallout||$19,000,000||-46%||3,888||-507||$4,887||$160,967,284||3||Paramount|
|3||Disney’s Christopher Robin||$13,100,000||-47%||3,602||0||$3,637||$50,689,317||2||Disney|
|4||Slender Man||$10,800,000||—||2,358||—||$4,580||$10,800,000||1||Sony / Screen Gems|
|6||The Spy Who Dumped Me||$5,900,000||-51%||3,111||0||$1,896||$23,860,385||2||Lionsgate|
|7||Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again||$5,600,000||-38%||2,812||-547||$1,991||$103,609,200||4||Universal Pictures|
|8||The Equalizer 2||$5,200,000||-41%||2,373||-352||$2,191||$89,345,928||4||Sony / Columbia|
|9||Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation||$4,800,000||-40%||2,589||-573||$1,854||$146,577,391||7||Sony / Columbia|
|10||Ant-Man and the Wasp||$3,800,000||-40%||1,863||-370||$2,040||$203,270,344||6||Disney|
|12||Dog Days||$2,400,000||—||2,442||—||$983||$3,440,972||1||LD Entertainment / Mirror|
|13||The Darkest Minds||$2,000,000||-66%||3,127||0||$640||$2,000,000||2||20th Century Fox|
|14||Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom||$1,900,000||-52%||1,237||-677||$1,536||$409,569,945||8||Universal|
|15||Teen Titans GO! to the Movies||$1,500,000||-69%||1,437||-1751||$1,044||$25,276,544||3||Warner Bros.|
|1||Death of a Nation||$920,000||-61%||825||-180||$1,115||$4,453,941||2||Quality Flix / Pure Flix|
|3||Sorry To Bother You||$400,000||-50%||204||-200||$1,961||$15,780,404||6||Annapurna Pictures|
|4||Blindspotting||$210,000||-68%||138||-385||$1,522||$3,768,033||4||Lionsgate / Summit|
|5||Avengers: Infinity War||$200,000||-21%||172||-33||$1,163||$678,416,107||16||Disney|
|6||Solo: A Star Wars Story||$125,000||-35%||170||-30||$735||$213,279,445||12||Disney|
|7||Uncle Drew||$76,000||-60%||118||-84||$644||$42,043,246||7||Lionsgate / Summit|
Friday Update: Warner Bros. reports today that The Meg earned a strong $4 million start from Thursday night’s opening shows. That slightly more than doubles the $1.95 million of Skyscraper last month, indicating the film could be on pace to exceed industry expectations over the weekend. The caveat at this every early stage of the weekend is that The Meg has been a heavily buzzed-about film among genre fans due to its source 1997 novel, so some front-loading could be at play. That’s despite recent social media tracking not indicating as much of a breakout as other models, leaving projections volatile until we get stronger idea of Friday proper business.
Overseas, the studio updates with an estimated $7.2 million running tally through Thursday — including $6.3 million from 29 markets. In addition to that, early estimates position The Meg at a $16 million opening day (Friday) in China, which includes midnight shows. WB notes that the film is comparing favorably ahead of films like San Andreas, Skyscraper, and Geostorm.
Back in the States, Slender Man took in $1 million last night as it contended with the giant shark movie. By comparison, that comes in behind the $1.88 million of Don’t Breathe and $1.8 million of Lights Out two summers ago.
Wednesday’s opener Dog Days now stands at an estimated $1 million two-day total heading into the weekend.
Meanwhile, BlacKkKlansman also debuts this weekend but no Thursday night grosses were reported at the time of this publishing.
On the holdover front, Mission: Impossible – Fallout will remain a strong foe near the top of the market in its third weekend. Check out our weekend forecast for further analysis.