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411 Box Office Report: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Reigns For Second Week, The Menu Starts Solid

November 20, 2022 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas

It was a second weekend atop the box office for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, which led the way with $67.3 million. The MCU sequel ruled the box office with a weekend tally that was down 63% from last weekend’s final tally of $181.3 million. That drop is somewhat high compared to the MCU overall, though it’s the strongest hold for the franchise in 2022. By comparison, Thor: Love & Thunder dropped 68% in July and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness slipped 67% in May.

Wakanda Forever now stands at $288 million domestically and $546.3 million worldwide, making it already well on the road to megahit territory even against a $250 million budget. With its current tracking, it is on a course for a domestic total above $525 million, particularly when you consider the holiday weekend coming up. With no direct competition on the same caliber arriving until Avatar: The Way Of Water on December 16th, this is looking to be another massive performer for Marvel without breaking a sweat.

Coming in at a very distant #2 was The Menu. The darkly comedic thriller from director Mark Mylod brought in $9 million, right around where people were predicting it going into the weekend. It’s a solid start for a modestly-budgeted film ($30 million) that scoring well with critics on the whole and fans; the aggregated Rotten Tomatoes average is 90% positive with an 80% audience score and an “okay” B CinemaScore.

The Menu was looking to offer some counterprogramming to the behemoth that was Wakanda Forever, and in that capacity it’s not doing bad at all. It’s not made as a mainstream crowd-pleaser, but it’s looking to score on par with the likes of Midsommar, Ready or Not and Searching, all of which landed in the $26 million to $29 million range. Of course, the difference is that those films cost less than $10 million to make, but it should also be noted that they all legged out pretty well both domestically and internationally.

In this case, The Menu is doing solidly both here and abroad, with a $15.2 million worldwide total off the US and 36 overseas markets. It is likely to get to a breakeven point even if it won’t necessarily be a hit.

The holiday season started with Fathom Events’ latest chapter in the faith-based franchise The Chosen. The new entry, titled The Chosen Season 3: Episode 1 & 2 ranked at #3 with $8.2 million, in line last year’s Christmas with the Chosen which stared with $9.1 million (albeit over five days) to kick off December.

This franchise, like most event films distributed through Fathom special “events,” tends to have a short run in theaters. However, this one will be able to rely on the Thanksgiving weekend for a little extra revenue. It’s likely to end its tally in the $15 million range. No word on its budget.

Black Adam scored another $4.5 million in its fifth weekend, down a solid 44% from last weekend. The Dwayne Johnson-led DC film is now up to $157 million domestically and $366.2 million as it fights its way to a breakeven point. The jury is still out whether it can achieve that point, but it’s proving to have some legs and should be able to close out around $170 million domestically. Against a $200 million budget, it’s still going to have a fight to get to that profit margin.

Ticket to Paradise was off 46% in its fifth weekend to $3.2 million. The Julia Roberts/George Clooney romantic comedy has brought in $61.6 million domestically and $158.5 million worldwide, making it a solid hit for Universal Pictures against a $60 million budget. It should be able to finish at around $75 million or so domestically.

She Said started off on the low end, as it opened with just $2.3 million. The drama based on the investigation into Harvey Weinstein was projected for between $2 million and $5 million coming into the weekend. Critics liked this film with an 88% RT average, but Universal Pictures is taking its time with this one as it thinks there is awards potential here. The Carey Mulligan & Zoe Kazan-led film is getting buzz from good word of mouth; those who have seen it gave it an A CinemaScore and an 82% RT audience rating.

It’s hard to predict how this one is going to do, because it should continue to get weekends as Universal pushes it for the awards cycle. But as of now, it’s probably at least likely to get $10 million. That won’t be much considering on the $32 million budget, but this one is also intended by the studio to find its life mostly on streaming and other home viewing. It won’t be profitable in theaters (it only has $572,000 overseas for a $2.8 million worldwide total so far), but it will make back its money at its intended market.

Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile slipped 41% in its seventh weekend to $1.9 million, bringing its totals to $43.2 million domestically and $78.3 million worldwide. It still has a good ways to go until it’s making money considering the $50 million budget, and is currently looking at a domestic total around $50 million.

Smile, on the other hand, is just bringing in extra cash for Paramount at this point. The film was off 51% to $1.2 million in its eighth weekend, which gives it $104.6 million domestically and $213.9 million worldwide. It’s looking to close out stateside with around $110 million domestically against a budget of just $17 million.

Prey for the Devil’s was down 52% in its fourth weekend to $935,000. The possession movie has grossed $18.4 million domestically and $35.9 million worldwide, moderate numbers for what is likely a fairly inexpensive film. We still don’t know the budget for this one, but it’s likely mildly profitable with an expected $23 million stateside final.

The Banshees of Inisherin closed out the top 10 with $703,000, down 57%. The Colin Farrell & Brendan Gleeson starrer is now up to $7.2 million domestically and $16.6 million worldwide, targeting a $10 million domestic final. It will be slightly profitable against a $10 million budget.

Next weekend will see a host of new releases but none likely to top Wakanda Forever from keeping #1. The best chance for an upset comes from Disney, with Strange World looking at around $20 million to start with over the three-day frame. The mini-theatrical release of Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery should bring in around $8 million to $10 million (it arrives on Netflix next month), while war drama Devotion targets around $8 million as well. Cannibal romance Bones and All goes wide and should be in the low single digits, while Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans goes semi-wide with a similar expected gross.

BOX OFFICE TOP TEN (Three-Day Domestic Numbers)
1. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever – $67.3 million ($288 million total, $546.3 million WW)
2. The Menu – $9 million ($9 million total, $15.2 million WW)
3. The Chosen Season 3: Episode 1 & 2 – $8.2 million ($8.2 million total, $8.2 million WW)
4. Black Adam – $4.5 million ($157 million total, $366.2 million WW)
5. Ticket to Paradise – $3.2 million ($61.6 million total, $158.5 million WW)
6. She Said – $2.3 million ($2.3 million total, $2.8 million WW)
7. Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile – $1.9 million ($43.2 million total, $78.3 million WW)
8. Smile – $1.2 million ($104.6 million total, $213.9 million WW)
9. Prey For the Devil – $935,000 ($18.4 million total, $35.9 million WW)
10. The Banshees of Inisherin – $703,000 ($7.2 million total, $16.6 million WW)