'Deadpool' Destroys Expectations and Records with $135.0M Launch; 'Kung Fu Panda 3' Takes Second with $19.7M; 'How to Be Single' Solid in Third with $18.8M; 'Zoolander 2' Lackluster in Fourth with $15.7MFebruary 14, 2016 08:54 AM

by Daniel Garris

Fox's Deadpool exploded this weekend with an estimated three-day debut of $135.0 million. The Ryan Reynolds led antihero film not only destroyed expectations, but destroyed the previous all-time R-rated and February opening weekend records as well. Deadpool opened 47 percent ahead of the $91.77 million 2003 debut of previous R-rated record holder The Matrix Reloaded and 58.5 percent ahead of the $85.17 million start of previous February (and Presidents Day weekend) record holder Fifty Shades of Grey. Deadpool also delivered the largest debut ever for a film in the X-Men universe, as it opened 31 percent ahead of the $102.75 million three-day start of 2006's X-Men: The Last Stand. Deadpool opened 49 percent ahead of the $90.82 million three-day debut of last year's X-Men: Days of Future Past, which is especially impressive given that Deadpool didn't have the added advantage of higher priced 3D admissions and opened in 438 fewer locations.

Without adjusting for ticket price inflation, Deadpool registered the 17th largest opening weekend of all-time. The film also claimed the fifth largest debut ever for a Marvel adaptation (behind only 2012's Marvel's The Avengers, last year's Avengers: Age of Ultron, 2013's Iron Man 3 and 2007's Spider-Man 3) and the seventh largest debut ever for a comic book adaption of any kind (behind only 2012's The Dark Knight Rises and 2008's The Dark Knight in addition to the four mentioned Marvel films).

Thanks to a marketing campaign that went over amazingly well with moviegoers, Deadpool had generated strong online activity for months. But the film ultimately performed far stronger than even its online strength had suggested. In addition to the film's marketing striking the perfect chord with comic book fans and general audiences alike, Deadpool was also helped by the popularity of the character among comic book fans, good critical reviews and by Valentine's Day falling on Sunday.

Deadpool opened with $47.46 million on Friday (which included an estimated $12.7 million from Thursday night shows), dipped just 10 percent on Saturday to take in $42.55 million and is estimated to increase 6 percent on Valentine's Day Sunday to gross $45.00 million. That places the film's estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.85 to 1, which is very encouraging for a high-profile comic book adaptation (even with Valentine's Day in mind). Deadpool received a strong A rating on CinemaScore and currently boasts a terrific 96 percent audience score on Flixster. With word of mouth this strong, it's very possible that Deadpool will have stronger than expected holding power as well, on top of its already explosive debut. Fox's current four-day estimate for Deadpool is $150.0 million.

Fellow Fox release Kung Fu Panda 3 placed in a distant second with an estimated three-day take of $19.65 million. The 3D computer animated sequel from Fox and DreamWorks Animation was down just 14 percent from last weekend. Kung Fu Panda 3 was helped out this weekend by no new family films entering the marketplace, by the holiday frame and by Super Bowl 50 having deflated last weekend's grosses in general. Kung Fu Panda 3 has grossed $92.46 million in 17 days. That places the film 21 percent behind the $116.94 million 17-day gross of last year's Hotel Transylvania 2 (which fell 38.5 percent in its third weekend to claim $20.42 million). Kung Fu Panda 3 is likely to hold up well throughout the rest of February, thanks in part to no new family films entering the marketplace until the arrival of Disney's Zootopia on March 4. Fox's current four-day estimate for Kung Fu Panda 3 is $26.0 million.

Warner's How to Be Single debuted in third place with an estimated three-day start of $18.75 million. The romantic comedy from New Line and MGM featuring Dakota Johnson opened towards the higher end of pre-release expectations. How to Be Single benefited from Valentine's Day falling on Sunday and from ultimately representing a better alternative choice to Deadpool than Zoolander 2 did. How to Be Single performed 24 percent stronger than the $15.07 million three-day start of 2009's Confessions of a Shopaholic.

How to Be Single opened with $5.25 million on Friday (which included an estimated $700,000 from Thursday night shows), increased 14 percent on Saturday to gross $6.00 million and is estimated to increase 25 percent on Sunday to take in $7.50 million. The film received a respectable B rating on CinemaScore and currently has a 66 percent audience score on Flixster. BoxOffice currently estimates that How to Be Single will take in $21.0 million over the four-day frame.

Meanwhile, Paramount's Zoolander 2 had to settle for a fourth place estimated three-day launch of $15.65 million. The PG-13 rated comedy sequel starring Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson opened well below pre-release expectations. While Zoolander 2 had generated strong online activity levels before its release, that online activity and the film's cult following failed to transfer over to the box office this weekend. Obviously, the break-out performance of Deadpool also significantly limited the potential of Zoolander 2 this weekend. Without taking into account 15 years of ticket price inflation, the three-day start for Zoolander 2 was very similar to the $15.53 million debut of 2001's Zoolander.

Zoolander 2 opened with $4.20 million on Friday (which included an estimated $750,000 from Thursday night shows), increased 11 percent on Saturday to gross $4.67 million and is estimated to increase 45 percent on Sunday to gross $6.78 million. The film received a soft C+ rating on CinemaScore and currently has an audience score of just 37 percent on Flixster. Neither is a good sign for Zoolander 2 going forward. Paramount's current four-day estimate for Zoolander 2 is $18.0 million.

Beyond the top four, other estimated three-day grosses this weekend included $6.90 million for Fox's The Revenant, $6.59 million for Universal's Hail, Caesar!, $6.19 million for Disney's Star Wars: The Force Awakens and $5.25 million for Lionsgate's The Choice. The Revenant (down 1 percent), The Force Awakens (down 11 percent) and The Choice (down 13 percent) all held up extremely well this weekend, while Hail, Caesar! was down a troubling 42 percent. Respective current total grosses stand at $914.84 million for The Force Awakens, at $159.16 million for The Revenant, at $21.35 million for Hail, Caesar! and at $13.26 million for The Choice.

Weekend Actuals (Domestic) Fri, May. 25 - Sun, May. 27

Wide (1000+)

1Men in Black 3$54,592,779--4,248--$12,851$54,592,7791Sony / Columbia
2Marvel's The Avengers$36,686,871-34%3,918-331$9,364$523,907,2024Disney
4The Dictator$9,276,560-47%3,0146$3,078$41,124,6642Paramount
5Chernobyl Diaries$7,955,307--2,433--$3,270$7,955,3071Warner Bros.
6Dark Shadows$7,504,387-40%3,404-351$2,205$62,987,2833Warner Bros.
7What to Expect When You're Expecting$7,127,919-32%3,0210$2,359$22,149,1672Lionsgate
8The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel$6,383,20398%1,233879$5,177$16,586,6994Fox Searchlight
9The Hunger Games$2,311,406-22%1,421-643$1,627$395,320,19110Lionsgate

Limited (100 — 999)

1Think Like a Man$1,465,265-45%786-936$1,864$88,337,2066Sony / Screen Gems
2The Pirates! Band of Misfits$1,082,288-31%884-956$1,224$27,286,5925Sony / Columbia
3Bernie$870,15477%19499$4,485$2,221,9605Millennium Entertainment
421 Jump Street$660,79593%364103$1,815$136,503,52211Sony / Columbia
5The Lucky One (2012)$566,829-68%615-1390$922$58,279,6626Warner Bros.
6Mirror Mirror$482,50219%42215$1,143$62,200,7599Relativity Media
7Dr. Seuss' The Lorax$475,7854%39011$1,220$210,839,55513Universal
8The Three Stooges$322,573-26%325-269$993$42,303,9277Fox
10The Five-Year Engagement$294,555-73%274-901$1,075$27,949,8405Universal
11John Carter$247,940-33%17561$1,417$72,473,55912Disney
12Wrath of the Titans$232,380-51%255-105$911$82,927,7569Warner Bros.
13Journey 2: The Mysterious Island$177,118-15%175-70$1,012$103,110,61116Warner Bros. / New Line
14The Cabin in the Woods$174,424-54%203-245$859$40,933,1457Lionsgate
15Girl in Progress$127,490-72%143-179$892$2,405,7633Lionsgate / Pantelion
16American Reunion$114,650-57%165-125$695$56,706,7558Universal
17Safe (2012)$62,175-79%112-391$555$16,799,1285Lionsgate
18The Raven$60,013-75%111-321$541$15,735,5035Relativity Media
19Bully (2012)$42,552-53%104-100$409$3,297,0259Weinstein Company

Platform (1 — 99)

1Moonrise Kingdom$522,996--4--$130,749$522,9961Focus
2To the Arctic 3D$225,5754%501$4,512$2,310,3466Warner Bros. / IMAX
3First Position$149,88161%5615$2,676$493,3384IFC Films
4Hysteria$138,251288%3227$4,320$194,0572Sony Pictures Classics
5Crooked Arrows$137,389-46%6712$2,051$456,8442Branded/Peck Films
6Headhunters$124,76839%456$2,773$570,5925Magnolia Pictures
7Monsieur Lazhar$113,52324%65-2$1,747$1,450,12931Music Box Films
8The Intouchables$103,507--4--$25,877$103,5071Weinstein Company
9Salmon Fishing in the Yemen$85,143-10%87-47$979$8,865,97812CBS Films
10Marley$70,341-4%53-2$1,327$1,162,9296Magnolia Pictures
11Born to Be Wild 3D$65,1818%340$1,917$19,069,21760Warner Bros. / IMAX
12Darling Companion$64,66410%611$1,060$518,4996Sony Pictures Classics
13Hubble 3D$63,07226%18-2$3,504$32,819,256115Warner Bros. / IMAX
14Where Do We Go Now?$58,261147%2513$2,330$121,5283Sony Pictures Classics
15Cowgirls n' Angels$54,675--50--$1,094$54,6751IDP/Samuel Goldwyn
16Deadtime (2012)$47,32072%13-3$3,640$156,0723Nocturnal Features
17Polisse$46,072178%1411$3,291$74,4412IFC Films
18Jiro Dreams of Sushi$44,10421%35-6$1,260$2,269,17212Magnolia Pictures
19Sound of My Voice$37,41121%425$891$310,3815Fox Searchlight
20Titanic 3D$33,431-34%42-28$796$57,801,0228Paramount
21Under the Sea 3D$31,654-1%202$1,583$31,519,651172Warner Bros. / IMAX
22A Thousand Words$30,963-46%59-51$525$18,429,08112Paramount
23We Have a Pope$28,63128%222$1,301$426,4958IFC Films
24This Means War$26,977-54%44-46$613$54,719,74715Fox
25Sea Rex: Journey To A Prehistoric World$22,22631%10-2$2,223$5,562,2071073D Entertainment
26Footnote$19,860-38%31-21$641$1,888,71712Sony Pictures Classics
27The Secret World of Arrietty$18,214-39%26-34$701$19,172,86915Disney
28The Kid With A Bike$16,543-25%20-14$827$1,347,76611IFC Films
29Grand Illusion: 75th Anniversary Restoration$14,730-22%30$4,910$66,7953Rialto Pictures
30Elena (2012)$14,73063%21$7,365$33,8852Zeitgeist Films
31Damsels in Distress$11,918-43%11-27$1,083$824,6188Sony Pictures Classics
32The Artist$11,619-57%20-83$581$44,575,36927Weinstein Company
33God Bless America$10,970-19%150$731$77,0653Magnolia / Magnet
34I Wish$10,610284%52$2,122$32,1203Magnolia Pictures
35The Deep Blue Sea (2011)$10,606-50%19-20$558$1,059,03410Music Box Films
37Elles$9,65023%82$1,206$118,7505Kino Lorber
38Oslo, August 31st$9,564--2--$4,782$9,5641Strand Releasing
39FOLLOW ME: The Yoni Netanyahu Story$8,856-61%9-10$984$63,7754International Film Circuit
40A Separation$8,84113%10-7$884$7,078,65522Sony Pictures Classics
41Act of Valor$8,221-84%39-57$211$70,002,49814Relativity Media
42The Raid: Redemption$7,754-25%12-3$646$4,080,43110Sony Pictures Classics
43Friends With Kids$6,218-43%9-16$691$7,238,97712Roadside Attractions
44The Perfect Family$6,114-45%6-6$1,019$90,0614Variance Films
45Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked$6,049-42%22-18$275$133,095,13724Fox
46OC87$5,733--1--$5,733$5,7331Fisher Klingenstein Films
47Deep Sea 3D$5,71458%10$5,714$44,626,354326Warner Bros. / IMAX
48October Baby$5,505-53%16-20$344$5,334,23531IDP / Samuel Goldwyn
49The Salt of Life$5,287331%42$1,322$301,73413Zeitgeist Films
50Undefeated$3,951-4%6-3$659$555,16515Weinstein Company
51Turn Me On, Dammit!$3,73695%20$1,868$71,5289New Yorker Films
52Once Upon a Time in Anatolia$3,674--2--$1,837$128,89721Cinema Guild
53Whores' Glory$3,250--2--$1,625$14,7805Kino Lorber
54Goon$2,916261%51$583$4,167,8279Magnolia / Magnet
55Beyond the Black Rainbow$2,877-42%20$1,439$11,7292Magnolia / Magnet
56Hit So Hard$2,478188%30$826$28,4197Variance Films
57Quill: The Life of a Guide Dog$2,33339%31$778$5,2972Music Box Films
58Bonsai$2,274-14%20$1,137$9,5883Strand Releasing
59Henning Mankell’s Wallander: The Revenge$2,230--1--$2,230$2,2301Music Box Films
60Gerhard Richter Painting$1,977-40%30$659$184,07411Kino Lorber
61Surviving Progress$1,966-13%20$983$35,2168First Run Features
62Tonight You're Mine$1,934--3--$645$5,0863Roadside Attractions
63Keyhole$1,83491%51$367$18,6408Monterey Media
64Coriolanus$1,724-66%4-4$431$756,02619Weinstein Company
65The Women on the 6th Floor$1,612--2--$806$711,28334Strand Releasing
66Red Tails$1,55949%74$223$49,871,44019Fox
67Virginia$1,516-78%2-3$758$11,0692Entertainment One Films
68Lovely Molly$1,423-89%2-3$712$17,9772Image Entertainment
69Jesus Henry Christ$1,257159%21$629$18,3906Entertainment One Films
70Small, Beautifully Moving Parts$1,169--1--$1,169$5,0993Long Shot Factory
71The Hunter (2012)$1,076-30%30$359$170,5448Magnolia Pictures
72The Turin Horse$938--1--$938$47,93816Cinema Guild
73Steve Jobs: The Lost Interview$913-57%7-4$130$97,2973Magnolia Pictures
74The Color Wheel$812-79%1-1$812$6,7022Cinema Conservancy
75Never Stand Still: Dancing at Jacob's Pillow$772-60%10$772$4,1522First Run Features
76Blue Like Jazz$493-73%3-4$164$594,4677Roadside Attractions
77Nobody Else But You$387-37%10$387$7,0563First Run Features
78Payback (2012)$363-60%1-2$363$12,1615Zeitgeist Films
79Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace 3D$250-15%10$250$43,456,38216Fox
80The Fairy$156-69%1-1$156$24,04114Kino Lorber