Cinema’s box office got some long-awaited relief from a big-opening drought last weekend, as Jamie Lee Curtis and Halloween Ends (CMCSA) opened to $40.1M. Now its Warner’s time (NASDAQ:WBD) as the studio trying for the first big superhero film opening since Thor: Love and Thunder (DIS) in July.
That comes via arguably the top-earning film star, Dwayne Johnson, and his DC Comics entry Black Adam (WBD), universally expected to take the top spot this weekend – but how much the expensive film will draw is an open question.
Warner Bros./DC opened The Batman to $134M in March, but the character of Black Adam isn’t nearly as well known to audiences. And the film is drawing a mixed critical reception at best.
Black Adam drew a strong $7.6M in Thursday previews, suggesting a better opening than relatively comparable Shazam (WBD) – likely somewhere in the mid eight digits, or perhaps $60M.
That will be enough to take down a second week of Halloween Ends as well as romantic comedy counterprogramming coming from Ticket to Paradise (CMCSA), with George Clooney and Julia Roberts as divorcees looking to sabotage their daughter’s Bali wedding. That film is tracking toward a mid-teens opening.
In smaller releases, Brendan Gleeson and Colin Farrell work together again in Irish dramedy The Banshees of Inisherin (DIS).
And Black Adam needs to soak up hero audiences while it can: In three weeks Marvel is back with a surely bigger opener in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (DIS).
Cinema tickers: AMC Entertainment (AMC); Cineworld (OTCPK:CNNWQ); Cinemark (CNK); (IMAX); Marcus (MCS); Reading International (RDI); Cineplex (CGX:CA); National CineMedia (NCMI).
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