'Kung Fu Panda 3' tops box office, 'Finest Hours' flounders

LOS ANGELES -- "Kung Fu Panda 3" kicked its way to the top of the North American box office with a respectable $41 million, according to Rentrak estimates Sunday.

See Full Article

The DreamWorks Animation film cost a reported $145 million to make and earned a strong "A" CinemaScore from audiences -- 70 per cent of whom were families.

"It's a bold move to take a franchise which has had great success in that summer corridor and move it into late January, which is generally considered a very slow time," Rentrak's senior media analyst Paul Dergarabedian said. "It also filled a huge void in the marketplace."

The first film opened to $60.2 million in 2008 and the second to $47.7 million in 2011.

For Fox, switching up the release was a no-brainer after seeing the successes of "The Lego Movie" and last year's "The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water" in this time frame.

"We know that when the market conditions are right, this business really is a 365-day-a-year business," said Chris Aronson, Fox's domestic distribution chief. "We saw an opportunity and we grabbed it. We're thrilled with the results."

There are a number of winter holidays coming up where kids will be out of school and "Zootopia," 2016's next big animated release, doesn't open until March 4.

The animated sequel also fared much better than the weekend's other new openers, like Disney's Coast Guard adventure "The Finest Hours," which debuted in fourth place with $10.3 million.

Based on a real life 1952 rescue mission, "The Finest Hours" stars Chris Pine, Casey Affleck and Ben Foster and cost around $80 million to make.

Dergarabedian thinks that the nautical theme might have seemed too similar to the recently released "In the Heart of the Sea" for audiences.

The opening is similar to last year's "McFarland, USA," another fact-based drama from Disney, which opened with $11 million in late February and went on to earn $44.4 million.

The "Fifty Shades of Grey" parody "Fifty Shades of Black," meanwhile, earned a modest $6.2 million, but it only cost a reported $5 million to produce. Marlon Wayans co-wrote, stars in and produced the R-rated takeoff.

"Spoof movies and parodies have a very mixed box office record," said Dergarabedian. "The reviews are never good on these movies. You have to really hope you're riding a wave of the popularity of the movie you're spoofing."

"Fifty Shades of Grey" was released last February and its sequel isn't expected until next year.

The Weinstein Company's Natalie Portman-led Western "Jane Got a Gun" misfired out of the gates, bringing in only $803,000 on a $25 million budget.

Overall, there wasn't much space for newcomers with strong holdovers like "The Revenant" and "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," which took second and third place with $12.4 million and $10.8 million, respectively. Both fell only 23 per cent from last weekend.

Notably, Fox's "The Revenant," once considered a possible box office disaster with its gritty subject matter and reported $135 million budget, has earned $138.2 million to date in six weeks in theatres thanks in part to its awards hot streak with multiple wins for star Leonardo DiCaprio and a host of high profile Oscar nominations.

"It's a marvelous thing for us, for the industry, for filmmaking in general. To have a hold like this is really heartening," Aronson said. "This is a pretty good weekend. There's a very balanced marketplace here. There's something for everyone out there now, and I've always said that's when this business is at its best."

Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theatres, according to Rentrak. Final domestic figures will be released Monday.

1. "Kung Fu Panda 3," $41 million.

2. "The Revenant," $12.4 million.

3. "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," $10.8 million.

4. "The Finest Hours," $10.3 million.

5. "Ride Along 2," $8.3 million.

6. "The Boy," $7.9 million.

7. "Dirty Grandpa," $7.6 million.

8. "The 5th Wave," $7 million.

9. "Fifty Shades of Black," $6.2 million.

10. "13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi," $6 million.



Advertisements

Latest Entertainment News

  • Classified wins ECMA Song of Year for Snoop Dogg collaboration

    Entertainment CTV News
    SAINT JOHN, N.B. - A fun collaboration with Snoop Dogg called "No Pressure" rewarded Classified with the Song of the Year award Thursday night at the annual East Coast Music Awards. The rapper, from Enfield, N.S. Source
  • Acadian rockers, favourite folkies rule East Coast Music Awards

    Entertainment CBC News
    A mix of old favourites and brash newcomers took home the honours at the East Coast Music Awards gala on Thursday night in Saint John. For the third year in a row, the gala was held at the start of the annual event, a move that organizers say spreads the festivities over several days. Source
  • Scarlett Johansson wants to meet 72-year-old doppelganger

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Scarlett Johansson is keen to meet a 72-year-old woman who was her spitting image 50 years ago. Last week, a user on the content sharing website Reddit posted a photo of his grandmother, Geraldine, at the age of 22, and noted she was once looked strikingly similar to the Avengers star. Source
  • Documentary captures genius behind Canadian architectural marvel

    Entertainment CTV News
    Integral House is undeniably an architectural marvel. Nestled in a canopied ravine in Toronto’s Rosedale neighbourhood, the home’s alluring curved walls and sweeping open spaces make it one of Canada’s most unique private residences. But the story behind Integral House, captured in the documentary “Integral Man,” may rival its striking beauty. Source
  • Portrayal of Michael Jackson 'should not have been axed': Joseph Fiennes

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Actor Joseph Fiennes has defended his portrayal of Michael Jackson in the cancelled Urban Myths, insisting the project was no worse than the comedy skits on U.S. TV show Saturday Night Live. Fiennes’ casting as the King of Pop in the show upset members of Jackson’s family and fans and the Sky Arts programme, which imagined a drive the Thriller singer took with Elizabeth Taylor and Marlon Brando back to Los Angeles from New York City after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, was eventually axed amid…
  • Mike Myers working on ideas for fourth 'Austin Powers' flick

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Mike Myers and director Jay Roach are working on concepts for a fourth Austin Powers movie. The comedy trilogy surrounding the quirky 1960s spy, portrayed by Myers, has been a huge hit and the filmmaking duo insist there’s always a possibility they will regroup for another adventure - if a good idea presents itself. Source
  • Nintendo sells 2.74 million Switch consoles, trims quarterly losses

    Entertainment CBC News
    Nintendo Co.'s Switch, a new hybrid game machine that works as both a console and a tablet, is selling well, helping the Kyoto-based company behind the Super Mario and Pokemon franchises trim its quarterly losses. Nintendo said Thursday it has sold 2.74 million Switch machines and 5.46 million units of Switch software since sales began in March. Source
  • 'Bachelor' star Chris Soules acted reasonably after crash, legal team says

    Entertainment CTV News
    This Tuesday, April 25, 2017, photo provided by the Buchanan County Sheriff's Office in Independence, Iowa, shows Chris Soules, former star of ABC's "The Bachelor," after being booked early Tuesday after his arrest on a charge of leaving the scene of a fatal accident near Arlington, Iowa. Source
  • Bella Thorne Snapchats her bikini wax

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Actress Bella Thorne has shared her first bikini waxing session online. The 19-year-old posted footage of herself getting her summer groom on via Snapchat this week. Fans watched as she sat on a white towel with a pair of scissors in her right hand, apparently trimming her pubic hair, ahead of the waxing session with a beautician. Source
  • What's happening right now at the ECMAs in Saint John

    Entertainment CBC News
    Roll out the red carpet: the East Coast Music Awards show kicks off Thursday evening at Harbour Station. Starting at 8 p.m., winners will be announced in categories including album/video/solo recording of the year, enregistrement francophone de l'année, Indigenous artist of the year, song of the year, and the country, rock and rising star categories. Source