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by on January 8, 2024
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Box Office: ‘Night Swim’ Opens to $12M, ‘Wonka’ Leads Overall as Post-Holiday Doldrums Begin
'Night Swim' is the latest offering from horror maestros Jason Blum and James Wan. Overseas, the pic earned $5.7 million from its first raft of markets for a global start of $17.7 million.
Night Swim swam to $12 million in its domestic box office opening, good enough for a second-place finish behind Christmas holdover Wonka.
Produced by horror maestros Jason Blum and James Wan, Night Swim was the weekend’s only new wide release as the post-holiday doldrums begin. Domestic revenue was down a steep 18 percent from the same frame in 2023.
The Universal horror pic, playing in North American 3,250 theaters, came in slightly ahead of expectations despite scathing reviews and a C CinemaScore from audiences, although it didn’t come anywhere near to matching the $30.4 million opening of Universal and Blumhouse’s M3GAN on the same weekend a year ago.
Overseas, the film took in $5.7 million from its first 36 markets for a global dive of $17.7 million against a $15 million budget before marketing.
Directed by Bryce McGuire, Night Swim is adapted from a 2014 short film he made in collaboration with Rod Blackhurst. The 98-minute movie begins with a flashback of a young girl who meets an unfortunate end when she attempts to retrieve a mysterious toy boat from her backyard swimming pool. Years later, the Waller family movies in: Ray (Wyatt Russell), a former baseball player whose career was cut short by multiple sclerosis; his wife, Eve (Kerry Condon); teenage daughter Izzy (Amélie Hoeferle); and his not-so-athletic 12-year-old son Elliot (Gavin Warren).
Night Swim hit the big screen just as Blum and Wan closed a deal to merge their companies, Blumhouse and Atomic Monster, respectively. (M3GAN is among the movies they previously worked on together.)
Warner Bros.’ Wonka stayed atop the domestic box office this weekend with an estimated $14.4 million from 3,817 locations. The Timothée Chalamet-led musical was the biggest winner of the 2023 Christmas season and is on the verge of crossing the $165 million mark in North America, the best showing of any year-end holiday title.
Overseas, Wonka achieved a major milestone in dancing past the $300 million mark after earning another $28.9 million from 77 markets for a foreign tally of $301.2 million and a dazzling global total of $465.8 million. (Who says musicals can’t work on the big screen?)
Among other holiday holdovers, Illumination and Universal’s animated family offering Migration and Warners’ DC superhero Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom are battling it out for third-place.
Aquaman 2 is reporting an estimated weekend gross of $10.6 million from 3,553 theaters, which bests the estimated $10.3 million earned by Migration. However, rival studios show Aquaman earning closer to $10 million and coming in behind Migration, albeit it by a small margin.
Migration, playing in 3,712 locations, has earned an estimated $77.8 million domestically. Aquaman 2 is the latest superhero tenptole to fall flat with audiences, and has barely cracked the $100 million mark domestically.
It has done far more business overseas, but not enough to stop the bleeding. It earned another $30.3 million this weekend from 77 markets for a foreign tally of $234.8 million and a lackluster worldwide cume of $334.8 million.
The official order of the two films will be decided Monday when final numbers are released.
Sony’s edgy romantic-comedy Anyone But You continued to find its audience and sported an impressive 9 percent uptick from last weekend. The pic, rounding out the top five, grossed an estimated $9.5 million from 3,055 theaters for a domestic cume of $43.7 million. Overseas, it took in another $5.4 million for an early foreign total of $14.7 million and $58.4 million globally.
The George Clooney-directed The Boys in the Boat, from MGM/Amazon, passed up fellow adult title The Color Purple for the first time this weekend to place No. 6 with an estimated $6 million from 2,687 theaters for a domestic cume of $33.9 million.
From Warner Bros. and Amblin, The Color Purple grossed an estimated $4.8 million from 3,218 cinemas for a domestic tally of $54.6 million through Sunday.
A24’s adult wrestling drama The Iron Claw held in nicely, grossing $4.5 million from 2,392 sites for a domestic total of $24.3 million.
The Color Purple and Wonka are among the movies competing for top awards at Sunday’s Golden Globes.
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