‘Jumanji: The Next Level’ Advancing To $52M+ Opening; ‘Richard Jewell’ & ‘Black Christmas’ Earn Lumps Of Coal

Movies

2nd Update, Friday Midday: Jumanji: The Next Level per industry estimates is on its way to $17.5M-$18M for a 3-day of $46M-$50M, well ahead of the previous installment’s 3-day of $36.1M which was actually a 6-day opener through the then Christmas holiday of $71.9M. Jumanji Welcome to the Jungle was boosted by early Amazon sneaks of $2M; the pic opened in full sans Tuesday previews on the Wednesday before Christmas which fell on a Monday in 2017. Already in its overseas release, Jumanji: The Next Level counts $66.8M from 18 offshore territories including China, France, Taiwan and Indonesia to name a few.

Overseas according to Nancy Tartaglione, Jumanji: The Next Level is adding several majors including the UK, Germany, Spain, Russia, Japan, Korea and Mexico. Industry estimates have the pic coming in between $60M-$65M mark in the new markets.  UK and Korea opened Wednesday. Last weekend’s holdovers are expected to contribute about $20M for the FSS, so the full frame should come in at $80M+ overseas. Add that to the week’s total and running foreign B.O. for the Jake Kasdan pic will stand at $146.8M with a potential full global tally of $196M+ by Sunday.

The $52.5M international debut session last weekend included China which underperformed, whereas numbers elsewhere in Asia and Europe were better, largely surpassing Welcome To The Jungle. Australia, Italy and Brazil are still to release later in December and in early January.

Outside of families, adults sans kids aren’t ready to come to the movies this week, still distracted by holiday activities with Warner Bros. Richard Jewell opening at a low $6M in 4th place off a $1.8M-$2M Friday. Universal/Blumhouse Black Christmas isn’t putting wads of cash under the studio’s Christmas tree with $2M today and $5.3M for the weekend in 5th. Hopefully people will find these pics later in the season.

1st Update, Friday 7:10 AM: Sony’s sequel Jumanji: The Next Level is off to a great start with a $4.7 million Thursday off shows that began at 4 PM in 3,778 locations. Sony sees a $35M opening weekend at 4,227 theaters, but others see the third pic in the franchise much higher, in the $45M-$50M range. Typically, moviegoing doesn’t explode until after Christmas, so even if Jumanji 2 comes in lower than expected, the hope is for a big multiple. Like 2017, the pic will be the other tentpole in a holiday marketplace next to Star Wars. 

Last night’s cash is just above what Paramount’s reboot of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles made in August 2014, which resulted in a $65.5M opening. Remember there aren’t any K-12 schools out today, only 27% colleges. Next Friday when Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker opens, school vacation stats jump to 15% K-12 out, 79% colleges on break, hence the beginning of a robust holiday period. Another box office comparison title being looked at here is last December’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse which made $3.5M in previews before finaling a $12.6M Friday, $35.3M opening.

Parents and kids under 12 last night gave the Dwayne Johnson-Kevin Hart-Jack Black-Karen Gillan and director Jake Kasdan reteam 4 stars on Comscore/Screen Engine’s PostTrak, while general audiences gave it 3 1/2 stars and a 58% definite recommend. These exits can fluctuate throughout the weekend. The pic drew 74% general audience, 26% families. Jumanji 2 has a 69% Rotten Tomatoes score, just under the 76% certified fresh score of the last installment, which revived the Sony brand with a $36.1M stateside opening, and a very leggy $404.5M stateside and $962.1M worldwide. We hear from solid finance sources that Jumanji: The Next Level cost around $132M net.

Warner Bros is opening Clint Eastwood’s Richard Jewell today in the throes of the pic’s controversy over its portrayal of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. No previews were held last night, but the pic is expected to file $10M at 2,502 locations.

Black Christmas

Going after young females (who still yet have to come out in droves), Universal/Blumhouse has Black Christmas in roughly 2,500 theaters today with an eye on $10M-$12M. We hear at this early part of the morning that the Sophia Takal-directed feature made $230K in previews. Pic stars Imogen Poots, Aleyse Shannon, Lily Donoghue, Brittany O’Grady, Caleb Eberhardt, Simon Mead and Cary Elwes in a reboot of the 1974 movie. In this rendition, a group of female students are stalked by a stranger during their Christmas break, that is until the young sorority pledges discover that the killer is part of an underground college conspiracy. Critics weren’t kind to Black Christmas, giving it a 41% Rotten Tomatoes score. The pic’s exits were awful last night with 1 star on PostTrak and a 29% definite recommend. Make-up was 54% males/46% females, with 45% under 25/55% over 25. Leading demos last night were men over 25 (31%), women over 25 (24%), men under 25 (23%) and females under 25 (22%).

Disney’s Frozen 2of course, led all pics in regular release Thursday with an estimated $1.76M, ending its third week with $44.4M and a running total of $347.3M. Lionsgate/MRC’s Knives Out was second with $1.27M, a second-week take of $20.3M and a running estimated total of $69.7M.

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