'Focus' Leads Lackluster Frame with $19.1M; 'The Lazarus Effect' Debuts in Fifth with $10.6MMarch 01, 2015 08:49 AM

by Daniel Garris

As was widely expected, Warner's Focus debuted in first place this weekend with an estimated $19.1 million. However, the romantic heist film starring Will Smith and Margot Robbie did perform slightly below pre-release expectations. Focus opened a lackluster 31 percent below the $27.52 million start of 2013's After Earth, though it should be noted that Focus was far less expensive than After Earth and will likely hold up significantly better than After Earth did after opening weekend. With that said, the debut of Focus further suggests that Smith's drawing power at the box office is nowhere near the level it once was.

Focus debuted with $6.47 million on Friday (which included an estimated $900,000 from Thursday night shows), increased 18 percent on Saturday to take in $7.66 million and is estimated to decline 35 percent on Sunday to claim $4.98 million. That places the film's estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio at a very solid 2.95 to 1 (though it should be noted that Friday's grosses were deflated a bit in general by winter weather in parts of the country). The film received a respectable B rating on CinemaScore. The audience breakdown for Focus skewed towards female moviegoers (53 percent) and heavily towards moviegoers over the age of 25 (88 percent).

Focus took in $2.08 million from IMAX locations, which represented 10.9 percent of the film's overall gross this weekend.

It was a tight race for places two through five this weekend, as second place and fifth place were separated by just an estimated $1.15 million.

Fox's Kingsman: The Secret Service took in an estimated $11.75 million to claim second place for a third consecutive weekend. The Matthew Vaughn directed graphic novel adaptation starring Colin Firth was down a very solid 36 percent from last weekend. Kingsman: The Secret Service continues to inch closer to the $100 million domestic mark with a stronger than expected 17-day take of $85.69 million. That places the film an impressive 52.5 percent ahead of the $58.82 million 17-day gross of 2010's Red.

The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water held steady in third place this weekend with an estimated $11.2 million. Thanks in part to facing no new direct competition from family audiences, Paramount's 3D animated film stabilized nicely this weekend, as it was down 32 percent from last weekend. The SpongeBob Movie continues to exceed expectations with a strong 24-day take of $140.32 million and is running 32 percent ahead of the $106.34 million 24-day take of 2011's Rango.

After leading the box office each of the past two weekends, Fifty Shades of Grey fell three spots to land in fourth place with an estimated $10.93 million. Universal's successful erotic romantic drama was down a sharp 51 percent from last weekend, but showed relative signs of stabilization after last weekend's massive percentage decline. While it's proving to be very front-loaded, Fifty Shades of Grey has grossed a very strong $147.76 million in 17 days, which places it a sizable 48 percent ahead of the $99.92 million 17-day take of 2010's Valentine's Day.

The Lazarus Effect debuted in fifth place with an estimated $10.6 million. The low-budget PG-13 rated horror film from Relativity had been widely expected to open slightly higher, but was still off to a solid start this weekend given its cost. It should also be noted that online activity levels before the film's release were soft by horror film standards. The Lazarus Effect opened 12 percent below the $12.01 million start of Relativity's Oculus last April.

The Lazarus Effect opened with $3.8 million on Friday (which included an estimated $350,000 from Thursday night shows), increased a healthy 15.5 percent on Saturday to take in $4.39 million and is estimated to decline 45 percent on Sunday to gross an estimated $2.41 million. That gives the film an estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio of 2.79 to 1, which is very promising for a horror film. On the other hand, The Lazarus Effect received a C- rating on CinemaScore, which isn't the greatest early sign (even by horror film standards).

Disney's McFarland, USA held up very nicely in its second weekend, as it was down just 29 percent to place in sixth with an estimated $7.79 million. The sports drama starring Kevin Costner continues to perform on the high end of expectations with $21.98 million in ten days. That places the film 13.5 percent ahead of the $19.36 million ten-day take of last year's Draft Day (which fell 42 percent in its second weekend to gross $5.71 million). This weekend's hold is a strong sign for McFarland, USA going forward.

Warner's American Sniper continued to hold up very well this weekend with an estimated seventh place take of $7.7 million. The blockbuster Clint Eastwood directed Best Picture nominee starring Bradley Cooper was down a slim 23 percent from last weekend. American Sniper has grossed a massive $331.11 million to date and is now on the verge of surpassing the $336.71 million current total gross of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 to become the highest grossing release of 2014 domestically.

The DUFF also held up well this weekend with an estimated eighth place gross of $7.15 million. The low-budget PG-13 comedy from CBS Films and Lionsgate was down 34 percent from last weekend's stronger than expected start. The DUFF continues to exceed expectations with $20.05 million in ten days. That places the film 21 percent ahead of the $16.55 million ten-day take of last year's That Awkward Moment (which fell 40 percent in its second weekend to gross $5.24 million).

Weekend Actuals (Domestic) Fri, Jan. 17 - Sun, Jan. 19

Wide (1000+)

1Ride Along$41,516,170--2,663--$15,590$41,516,1701Universal
2Lone Survivor$22,058,815-42%2,989114$7,380$72,868,9364Universal
3The Nut Job$19,423,000--3,427--$5,668$19,423,0001Open Road
4Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit$15,451,981--3,387--$4,562$15,451,9811Paramount
5Frozen (2013)$11,771,854-20%2,979-260$3,952$332,403,2159Disney
6American Hustle$9,866,36319%2,204-425$4,477$115,697,5546Sony / Columbia
7Devil's Due$8,308,220--2,544--$3,266$8,308,2201Fox
8August: Osage County$7,364,7213%2,0511146$3,591$17,953,9914Weinstein Company
9The Wolf of Wall Street$7,069,383-20%1,930-591$3,663$89,845,9814Paramount
10Her (2013)$4,034,417-25%1,7290$2,333$15,033,8445Warner Bros.
11Saving Mr. Banks$3,915,229-40%2,449-222$1,599$75,159,5266Disney
12The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug$3,704,957-54%1,815-1260$2,041$248,524,8026Warner Bros. / New Line
13The Legend Of Hercules$3,397,143-62%2,1040$1,615$14,372,7942Lionsgate / Summit
14The Hunger Games: Catching Fire$2,451,181-44%1,328-434$1,846$417,450,9739Lionsgate
15Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues$2,167,773-63%1,731-1281$1,252$122,099,1225Paramount
16Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones$1,400,117-78%1,569-1314$892$31,333,2253Paramount
17The Secret Life of Walter Mitty$1,300,023-70%1,037-1547$1,254$55,095,8414Fox

Limited (100 — 999)

1Gravity$1,867,037345%944789$1,978$258,277,70616Warner Bros.
212 Years a Slave$1,539,838469%761647$2,023$40,644,13614Fox Searchlight
3Philomena$1,261,381-9%505-102$2,498$24,023,8659Weinstein Company
4Inside Llewyn Davis$1,006,164-47%585-144$1,720$11,044,4257CBS Films
5Dallas Buyers Club$941,207292%419294$2,246$17,813,22012Focus
6Nebraska$883,2080%408-113$2,165$9,657,92510Paramount Vantage
7Captain Phillips$523,771449%903789$580$105,641,43315Sony / Columbia
847 Ronin$449,345-73%343-1016$1,310$37,598,2204Universal
9Walking With Dinosaurs$319,608-77%454-885$704$34,296,2545Fox
10Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2$292,644-11%256-8$1,143$118,427,18617Sony / Columbia
11The Book Thief$226,893-42%190-113$1,194$20,157,29311Fox
12Thor: The Dark World$191,424-39%185-72$1,035$204,233,18611Disney
13Tyler Perry's A Madea Christmas$170,371-84%391-649$436$52,222,0896Lionsgate
14Grudge Match$155,183-92%408-1597$380$29,059,2874Warner Bros.
15Last Vegas$124,946-30%194-46$644$63,603,32112CBS Films
16Free Birds$118,975-25%199-33$598$55,274,79512Relativity Media
17Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa$86,265-36%154-38$560$101,963,47413Paramount
18Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom$80,491-71%122-241$660$7,976,8778Weinstein Company
19Lee Daniels' The Butler$64,566-29%119-17$543$116,529,31723Weinstein Company

Platform (1 — 99)

1The Great Beauty$136,98491%5416$2,537$1,271,22210Janus Films
2The Past$97,24024%3013$3,241$376,6235Sony Pictures Classics
3The Invisible Woman$87,09297%2617$3,350$279,4964Sony Pictures Classics
4Delivery Man$52,265-34%79-54$662$30,069,1309Disney / DreamWorks
5Hubble 3D$47,68278%155$3,179$42,185,784201Warner Bros. / IMAX
6Blue Jasmine$45,056154%2812$1,609$33,145,52026Sony Pictures Classics
7Out of the Furnace$42,031206%9760$433$11,264,4877Relativity Media
8All Is Lost$40,34410%62-7$651$6,177,18914Roadside Attractions
9The Saratov Approach$20,373-37%22-3$926$1,663,26715Purdie Distribution
10Space Station 3D$17,437-10%31$5,812$89,867,124614IMAX
11Like Father, Like Son (2014)$16,044--2--$8,022$16,0441IFC Films
12Blue Is the Warmest Color$15,020-37%12-4$1,252$2,143,42513IFC Films
13The Best Offer$12,874454%65$2,146$19,5603IFC Films
14Journey to the South Pacific$10,79933%40$2,700$104,3358IMAX / MacGillivray Freeman
15Maidentrip$9,068--1--$9,068$16,3265First Run Features
16Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters$8,607-39%24-9$359$68,549,22624Fox
17American Mustang$7,906--1--$7,906$7,9061Vitagraph / Just Media
18Generation War$7,386--1--$7,386$10,0701Music Box Films
19Big Bad Wolves$6,342--6--$1,057$6,3421Magnolia / Magnet
20To the Arctic 3D$6,235-15%81$779$13,765,58592Warner Bros. / IMAX
21In Bloom$5,208-44%20$2,604$19,1882Big World Pictures
22Under the Sea 3D$5,16465%40$1,291$33,724,531258Warner Bros. / IMAX
23Contempt (2013 re-issue)$5,013--2--$2,507$39,19920Rialto Pictures
24Kill Your Darlings$4,794-42%122$400$1,014,11314Sony Pictures Classics
25Life of a King$4,231--16--$264$4,2311Millennium Entertainment
26The Rocket (2013)$3,775-18%53$755$11,1802Kino Lorber
27Fire in the Blood$3,494--3--$1,165$22,39020International Film Circuit
28The Armstrong Lie$3,474-66%9-3$386$367,50711Sony Pictures Classics
29Bettie Page Reveals All$3,160-6%5-1$632$95,8239Music Box Films
30A Touch of Sin$3,023-22%71$432$139,72816Kino Lorber
31Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?$2,969--3--$990$2,9691Film Movement
32Born to Be Wild 3D$2,820-34%71$403$23,136,467146Warner Bros. / IMAX
33Wadjda$2,433-25%8-1$304$1,422,17619Sony Pictures Classics
34Muscle Shoals$2,336-35%116$212$681,61317Magnolia Pictures
35Indigo Children$1,829--1--$1,829$1,8291Striped Entertainment
36More Than Honey$1,368--1--$1,368$77,37332Kino Lorber
37Personal Tailor$1,088-88%1-3$1,088$374,2855China Lion Film
38The Act of Killing$9456%2-2$473$465,68227Drafthouse Films
39Return to Nuke 'Em High: Volume 1$678-79%10$678$4,7352Anchor Bay Films
40Here Comes the Devil$5673%1-1$567$4,5346Magnolia / Magnet
41Sweet Dreams (2013)$482-16%32$161$27,78612International Film Circuit
42Computer Chess$98--1--$98$101,61727Kino Lorber