The three films joined the crowded Christmas parade on Friday; Steven Spielberg’s ‘The Post’ shines in select theaters.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle continued to dominate the year-end holiday box office on Friday, while Pitch Perfect 3 made a strong entry.
Disney and Lucasfilm’s The Last Jedi grossed $24.7 million from 4,323 theaters as it jumped the $300 million mark domestically for an eight-day North American total of $321.3 million and worldwide haul well north of $600 million. The tentpole should easily stay atop the chart with $108 million for the Friday-Monday stretch.
In a win for Sony, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is firmly entrenched at No. 2 after debuting on Wednesday. The reboot — starring Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan, Nick Jonas and Bobby Cannavale — earned an estimated $12.4 million on Friday for a projected six-day debut of $60 million-plus million. (Sony is being more judicious in predicting $57 million.)
Targeting younger females, Pitch Perfect 3 is pacing to come in No. 3 with a four-day debut of $35 million from 3,447 theaters after nabbing an A- CinemaScore. The threequel placed No. 3 on Friday with $10.6 million.
Regular franchise stars Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld, Brittany Snow, Anna Camp, Hana Mae Lee, Ester Dean, Alexis Knapp, Chrissie Fit, Kelley Jakle, Shelley Regner, Elizabeth Banks and John Michael Higgins all return in Pitch Perfect 3.
Fox and Chernin’s The Greatest Showman, starring Hugh Jackman as circus impresario P.T. Barnum, looks to come in slightly behind expectations with a six-day debut of $17 million-$19 million from 3,006 theaters. (It opened on Wednesday alongside Jumanji). The music-infused Greatest Showman, earning $3.1 million on Friday, had hoped to clear $20 million through Christmas Day.
The Greatest Showman and The Last Jedi both sport an A CinemaScore and Jumanji, an A-.
The holiday forecast isn’t looking too merry for Paramount’s Downsizing, directed by Alexander Payne, and Alcon Entertainment/Warner Bros.’ R-rated comedy Father Figures,
Downsizing, starring Matt Damon hoping to lure adults, opened $2.1 million on Friday from 2,558 theaters for a projected four-day debut of $7 million-to $8 million, behind the expected $10 million-$12 million. Hong Chau — who has earned a Golden Globe nom for performance — and Kristen Wiig co-star in the film, about a ordinary Midwestern man (Matt) who decides to be shrunk to five inches tall in order to live like a king.
Faring even worse is the season’s only R-rated comedy offering, Father Figures. The film opened to $1.4 million Friday from 3,902 theaters for a projected four-day debut of $4.5 million-$5 million. The film, following two brothers who set out to find their biological father, stars Owen Wilson, Ed Helms, J.K. Simmons, Katt Williams, Terry Bradshaw and Ving Rhames.
Downsizing earned a C CinemaScore, while Father Figures received an B-.
A bright spot for Fox is Steven Spielberg’s The Post, which launched Friday in nine theaters. The awards hopeful looks to snag a hefty theater average of $80,000 if numbers hold. Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks star in the Pentagon Papers drama.
Among other award contenders looking for attention, Focus Features’s The Darkest Hour, starring Gary Oldham as Winston Churchill, looks to command an impressive $7 million between Friday and Christmas Day after expanding into a total of 700 theaters on Friday.
Guillermo del Toro’s The Shape of Water, from Fox Searchlight and scoring seven top Golden Globe noms, the most of any film, is also expanded nicely. It is projected to gross $5 million from 726 cinemas for the four days for a domestic total through Christmas Day of $9.6 million.
The year-end holiday corridor is one of the most lucrative moviegoing stretches of the year, particularly between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.