Grosses

'Avengers: Age of Ultron' Registers the Second Largest Debut of All-Time with $187.7M; Fails to Match Its Predecessor After Sharp Saturday DeclineMay 03, 2015 08:53 AM

by Daniel Garris

Disney's Avengers: Age of Ultron debuted with an estimated $187.66 million this weekend. While that represented the second largest opening weekend performance of all-time, it also represented a notably softer debut than had been widely expected for the film (especially after its relatively strong Thursday night launch). Instead of surpassing the $207.44 million debut of 2012's Marvel's The Avengers, Avengers: Age of Ultron had to settle for opening in between The Avengers and the $174.14 million debut of 2013's Iron Man 3. Avengers: Age of Ultron opened 9.5 percent below The Avengers and 8 percent ahead of Iron Man 3.

That Avengers: Age of Ultron is on course to ultimately gross less domestically than The Avengers isn't a surprise. But it's opening weekend performance being softer than that of its predecessor is a surprise, in part from the fact that Avengers: Age of Ultron will in all likelihood be more front-loaded than The Avengers was, perhaps significantly so.

It should be mentioned that Saturday's performance appears to have taken a clear hit from the much hyped about and long awaited Mayweather vs. Pacquiao boxing match. Game 7 of the Los Angeles Clippers vs San Antonio Spurs NBA Playoffs series and the Kentucky Derby likely also helped take a toll on Saturday's performance as well.

Avengers: Age of Ultron took in $84.46 million on Friday (which included an estimated $27.6 million from Thursday evening shows), declined a very sharp 32 percent on Saturday to gross $57.22 million and is estimated to fall 20 percent on Sunday to gross $45.98 million. That places the film's estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.22 to 1. That is significantly more front-loaded than the 2.57 to 1 ratio of The Avengers and the 2.53 to 1 ratio of Iron Man 3.

In addition to Saturday's performance being affected by the mentioned sporting events, the early front-loading for Avengers: Age of Ultron suggests that die-hard fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe were much more excited about the film than more casual fans of the series were. It is quite possible that Furious 7 having gone over so well with moviegoers in April helped downplay anticipation a bit for Avengers: Age of Ultron with more casual fans (similarly, that appeared to happen this weekend last year when potential for The Amazing Spider-Man 2 was softened a bit by the strong audience reaction to Captain America: The Winter Soldier.)

There is hope that Avengers: Age of Ultron could rebound from its early front-loading going forward, thanks in part to a strong initial audience reaction of its own. Avengers: Age of Ultron received an A rating on CinemaScore and its early audience score among Rotten Tomatoes users stands at a very strong 90 percent. On the other hand, Avengers: Age of Ultron will face tougher initial competition throughout May than The Avengers did back in 2012, at least on paper, from the combination of Universal's Pitch Perfect 2, Warner's Max Max: Fury Road, fellow Disney release Tomorrowland and to a lesser extent from Fox's Poltergeist and Warner's Hot Pursuit.

The audience breakdown for Avengers: Age of Ultron skewed towards male moviegoers (59 percent) and towards moviegoers over the age of 25 (59 percent). Family audiences represented 22 percent of the film's overall audience. Avengers: Age of Ultron grossed an estimated $18.0 million from IMAX locations, which represented 9.6 percent of the film's overall gross.

Moving past the absolute market dominance of Avengers: Age of Ultron this weekend, it was a close three-way race for second place between Lionsgate's The Age of Adaline, Universal's Furious 7 and Sony's Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2. Estimates are close enough that the three films could still change positions when actuals are released on Monday.

The Age of Adaline placed in second with an estimated $6.25 million. While the romantic drama starring Blake Lively was down a significant 53 percent from last weekend's debut, it also experienced one of the weekend's stronger percentage holds. The Age of Adaline has grossed $23.42 million in ten days. That is on the high end of pre-release expectations and places the film just below the recent $23.68 million ten-day start of The Longest Ride (which fell 46 percent in its second weekend to gross $7.02 million). With aid from Mother's Day next weekend, The Age of Adaline should experience a stronger third weekend hold than The Longest Ride did.

After leading the box office for each of the past four weekends, Furious 7 fell to third place this weekend with an estimated $6.1 million. The seventh installment of Universal's blockbuster action franchise was down a very sharp 66 percent, which was understandable given the debut of Avengers: Age of Ultron and that Saturday's sports events took a toll on the marketplace in general. Furious 7 has grossed a massive $330.52 million through 31 days of release. That places the film an extremely impressive 45 percent ahead of the $228.62 million 31-day take of 2013's Fast & Furious 6.

Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 claimed fourth place with an estimated $5.55 million. The modestly budgeted Kevin James led comedy sequel fell a sharp 62 percent from last weekend. Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 has grossed $51.19 million in 17 days. The film continues to run in line with expectations and is running 13.5 percent behind the $59.21 million 17-day take of 2011's Zookeeper.

Weekend Actuals (Domestic) Fri, May. 21 - Sun, May. 23

Wide (1000+)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Shrek Forever After$70,838,207--4,359--$16,251$70,838,2071Paramount / DreamWorks
2Iron Man 2$26,361,258-49%4,177-213$6,311$251,026,0613Paramount
3Robin Hood$18,769,000-48%3,5052$5,355$66,166,0002Universal
4Letters to Juliet$9,006,266-33%2,9757$3,027$27,332,5072Summit
5Just Wright$4,290,431-48%1,8310$2,343$14,697,9712Fox Searchlight
6MacGruber$4,043,000--2,551--$1,585$4,043,0001Universal / Rogue
7Date Night$2,913,504-24%1,869-612$1,559$90,748,8187Fox
8A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)$2,321,000-50%2,125-950$1,092$59,968,0004Warner Bros. / New Line
9How to Train Your Dragon$1,901,211-62%1,751-869$1,086$210,990,9189Paramount / DreamWorks
10The Back-up Plan$942,930-61%1,079-1418$874$35,919,7075CBS Films
11Furry Vengeance$531,018-76%1,369-1326$388$16,131,7844Summit

Limited (100 — 999)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Kites$959,329--208--$4,612$959,3291Reliance Big Cinema
2Babies$725,266-27%395-148$1,836$5,102,3953Focus
3Death at a Funeral (2010)$537,573-53%561-501$958$41,463,0306Sony / Screen Gems
4Alice in Wonderland (2010)$484,75710%4118$1,179$332,194,26612Disney
5The Secret in Their Eyes (2010)$446,54921%14138$3,167$2,692,9606Sony Pictures Classics
6City Island$423,423-4%234-19$1,810$4,191,60510Anchor Bay
7Clash of the Titans (2010)$366,000-70%412-888$888$160,965,0008Warner Bros.
8Oceans$351,178-53%524-449$670$18,524,6655Disneynature
9The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)$342,8375%1780$1,926$6,274,04410Music Box
10Kick-Ass$280,612-48%309-300$908$47,171,9506Lionsgate
11Diary of a Wimpy Kid$278,032-28%352-116$790$62,344,36510Fox
12Shutter Island$240,937-18%256-54$941$127,564,14114Paramount
13Hot Tub Time Machine$238,000-22%278-180$856$49,584,0009MGM
14The Last Song$220,028-60%357-445$616$61,641,7568Disney
15Avatar$188,505-44%167-112$1,129$748,821,66523Fox
16The Bounty Hunter$148,123-32%170-123$871$65,258,28010Sony / Columbia
17The Losers$127,000-72%185-516$686$23,082,0005Warner Bros.
18Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief$90,189-27%166-43$543$88,480,61815Fox
19Tyler Perry's Why Did I Get Married Too?$68,134-60%133-148$512$59,808,1028Lionsgate
20The Tooth Fairy$53,553-35%115-17$466$59,903,07718Fox

Platform (1 — 99)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Hubble 3D$291,000-10%480$6,063$6,377,00010Warner Bros. / IMAX
2Please Give$236,553-5%534$4,463$1,061,5744Sony Pictures Classics
3Exit Through the Gift Shop$202,592-6%43-2$4,711$1,608,4916Producers Distribution Agency
4Harry Brown$168,07424%600$2,801$827,6734Samuel Goldwyn
5Princess Kaiulani$149,234-20%4714$3,175$426,5122Roadside Attractions
6Solitary Man$94,936--4--$23,734$94,9361Anchor Bay
7Mother and Child$82,38936%3713$2,227$231,4193Sony Pictures Classics
8The Ghost Writer$77,696-34%86-64$903$15,208,52014Summit
9La Mission$61,0009%35-1$1,743$796,0007Screen Media
10Our Family Wedding$50,862-19%84-19$606$20,165,79511Fox Searchlight
11Under the Sea 3D$42,00014%180$2,333$22,105,00067Warner Bros. / IMAX
12Holy Rollers$39,685--3--$13,228$39,68517First Independent Pictures
13Greenberg$33,918-26%47-30$722$4,216,78910Focus
14Casino Jack and the United States of Money$26,44644%198$1,392$95,6033Magnolia
15The Secret of Kells$23,710-1%23-3$1,031$496,71412GKIDS
16Metropolis (1927) (2010 re-issue)$23,028-25%40$5,757$113,8713Kino International
17Chloe$20,0877%24-5$837$2,994,6749Sony Pictures Classics
18Racing Dreams$20,048--33--$608$20,0481Hanover House
19The Human Centipede (First Sequence)$18,983-27%191$999$115,1864IFC
20Letters to God$18,000-31%39-36$462$2,823,0007Vivendi
21The Runaways$17,867-12%30-19$596$3,560,50810Apparition
22Mid-August Lunch (Pranzo di Ferragosto)$17,663-23%14-6$1,262$420,91110Zeitgeist
23Vincere$16,16275%192$851$573,32110IFC
24The City of Your Final Destination$15,000--11--$1,364$254,0006Screen Media Films
25The Square (2010)$13,642-9%12-2$1,137$262,3147Apparition
26OSS 117: Lost in Rio$12,78560%73$1,826$40,17058Music Box
27Deep Sea 3D$12,57618%20$6,288$43,291,541221Warner Bros. / IMAX
28The Joneses$11,287-57%27-29$418$1,426,5836Roadside Attractions
29Best Worst Movie$10,66230%21$5,331$31,2085Area23a
30The Father of My Children$10,414--1--$10,414$10,4141IFC Films
31A Prophet (Un proph├Ęte)$10,286-33%18-15$571$2,047,93613Sony Classics
32180┬░ South$10,269--4--$2,567$10,2691Magnolia
33The Cremaster Cycle (2010 re-issue)$9,787--1--$9,787$28,9437International Film Circuit
34Broken Embraces$9,037-51%11-9$822$5,009,11927Sony Classics
35Deadfall Trail$8,87019%52$1,774$20,6652Nocturnal Features
36Looking for Eric$8,85631%64$1,476$20,3572IFC
37Crazy Heart$8,443-55%28-22$302$39,455,07523Fox Searchlight
38Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure$7,57521%60$1,263$23,178,565138National Geographic
39Touching Home$6,700--7--$957$89,0004CFI
40Sweetgrass$6,69987%40$1,675$158,03335Cinema Guild
41The Little Traitor$6,25514%41$1,564$316,31024Westchester Films
42The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers$5,900--5--$1,180$438,00017First Run Features
43The Good, the Bad, the Weird$5,834-61%8-7$729$86,0037IFC
44Two in the Wave$5,676--1--$5,676$8,1001Lorber Films
45The Last Station$5,381-34%10-8$538$6,594,68119Sony Pictures Classics
46The Art of the Steal (2010)$5,347-33%12-5$446$541,02713IFC Films
47No One Knows About Persian Cats$5,309-25%126$442$64,5476IFC
48John Rabe$4,892--3--$1,631$4,8921Strand
49Lbs.$4,062--1--$4,062$27,3019Truly Indie
50Terribly Happy$4,04284%30$1,347$165,08816Oscilloscope
51Madeo (Mother)$3,955-11%9-4$439$512,75752Magnolia
52When You're Strange$3,801-24%30$1,267$229,4007Abramorama
53Daddy Longlegs$3,359-60%21$1,680$15,5772Sundance Selects
54U2 3D$2,722110%10$2,722$10,327,967122National Geographic
55Everyone Else$2,524-49%3-1$841$53,99249Cinema Guild
56After the Cup: Sons of Sakhin United$2,501--1--$2,501$2,5011Variance Films
57The Oath$2,418-3%21$1,209$18,4603Zeitgeist
58The Girl on the Train (2010)$2,300-24%61$383$199,00018Strand Releasing
59The Living Wake$2,155-44%10$2,155$8,2972Mangusta Productions
60North Face (Nordwand)$1,884-73%3-8$628$704,13117Music Box Films
61Multiple Sarcasms$1,698-35%3-3$566$28,9433New Films International
62The Eclipse$1,688-68%5-2$338$113,8849Magnolia
63Ajami$1,594-82%3-10$531$584,57436Kino International
64The Good Heart$1,440-46%4-2$360$19,9594Magnolia
65Perrier's Bounty$828--1--$828$8281IFC
66The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus$653-59%1-5$653$7,689,45822Sony Pictures Classics
67October Country$616143%1-13$616$22,09515International Film Circuit
68A Town Called Panic$475-13%1-1$475$158,06423Zeitgeist Films
69In/Significant Others$275-80%10$275$2,4272Fourth Ward Productions
70The White Ribbon$249-82%2-1$125$2,221,76321Sony Classics
71Happiness Runs$88-97%1-1$88$7,1993Strand