Neither the World Cup nor the Stanley Cup finals kept moviegoers out of the theater this weekend as a pair of box office newcomers both opened strong.
22 Jump Street was the big winner, grossing an estimated $60 million its opening frame—a massive 65% higher than the original’s $36.3 million in 2012. The bumbling cop duo of Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum turned in the second-highest-grossing opening weekend for an R-rated comedy, ranking just below Hangover II ($85.9 million), but besting both Ted ($54 million) and Sex and the City ($57 million).
How to Train Your Dragon 2 brought the heat as well, with an estimated $50 million opener. That’s 14% above the original’s opening gross of $43.7 million from 2010. The well-reviewed film from Dreamworks also earned an A Cinemascore from audiences and should hang on well as families flock to the movies over the next couple of weeks.
In third place Maleficent only fell 45% despite the arrival of the dragons. The re-imagined fairy tale, which didn’t score too high with critics but resonated with moviegoers, now has a three-week cume of $163.5 million. It even topped last weekend’s two debuts, outgrossing the Tom Cruise-starrer Edge of Tomorrow, which lost only 44% of its traffic in its sophomore session, coming in at an estimated $16 million. (The film’s strong reviews have surely helped it hold its value.) That puts its two-week total at an estimated $56.6 million. Then there’s last weekend’s top earner, The Fault in Our Stars, which saw its ticket sales drop by 67%. It earned an estimated $15.7 million for a 10-day total of $81.7 million.
X-Men: Days of Future Past landed outside of the top five this weekend, yet with an additional $9.5 million, it surpassed the $200 million mark. Twentieth Century Fox is the big winner this weekend, with three of the six top movies belonging to the distributor.
In limited release the Robert Pattinson, Guy Pearce-starrer The Rover performed strong, grossing $14,000 per theater for a $70,000 cume, proving that Pattinson is a draw outside the Twilight franchise. That said, the real test will come next weekend when distributor A24 expands the film nationwide.
Here is how your top five looks this weekend.
1. 22 Jump Street — $60 million
2. How to Train Your Dragon 2 — $50 million
3. Maleficient — $19 million
4. Edge of Tomorrow — $16 million
4. The Fault in Our Stars — $15.7 million
Despite this being only the fourth time the box office has had two films grossing more than $50 million in their debuts, the overall yield was down 7% compared to the same weekend last year, when Man of Steel had a $116.6M debut and This is the End bowed to $20.7M.
Yet the strength of these two openers (22 Jump Street also scored well with audiences, earning an A- Cinemascore) coupled with minimal drop-off from previous weeks’ releases has done a lot to keep the summer box office happy and healthy. The year-to-date total is up 3% from last year.
Check back next weekend when Think Like a Man Too and Clint Eastwood’s Jersey Boys debut.