Grosses

'Avengers: Age of Ultron' Scores the Second Largest Debut of All-Time with $191.3M LaunchMay 04, 2015 12:46 PM

by Daniel Garris

Disney's Avengers: Age of Ultron debuted with a massive $191.27 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 8 percent below The Avengers and 10 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 its 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 $84.42 million on Friday (which included an estimated $27.6 million from Thursday evening shows), declined a very sharp 33 percent on Saturday to gross $56.53 million and fell just 11 percent on Sunday to gross $50.32 million. That placed the film's opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.27 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.  Teenage moviegoers represented 12 percent of the film's overall audience, which represented a significant drop-off compared to The Avengers (when teens represented 21 percent of the opening weekend audience). 

Moving past the absolute market dominance of Avengers: Age of Ultron this weekend, it was a close three-way race for second place between Universal's Furious 7, Lionsgate's The Age of Adaline and Sony's Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2.

After leading the box office for each of the past four weekends, Furious 7 fell to second place this weekend with $6.64 million. The seventh installment of Universal's blockbuster action franchise was down a very sharp 63 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 $331.07 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.

The Age of Adaline placed in third $6.20 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 among wide releases. The Age of Adaline has grossed $23.38 million in ten days. That is on the high end of expectations and places the film just below the recent $23.68 million ten-day start of The Longest Ride. With aid from Mother's Day next weekend, The Age of Adaline should experience a stronger third weekend hold than The Longest Ride did.

Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 claimed fourth place with $5.88 million. The modestly budgeted Kevin James led comedy sequel fell a sharp 60 percent from last weekend. Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 has grossed $51.52 million in 17 days. The film continues to run in line with expectations and is running 13 percent behind the $59.21 million 17-day take of 2011's Zookeeper.

Daily Domestic Gross Sat, Apr. 20 2013

Wide (1000+)

#TitleSat, Apr. 20 2013LocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Oblivion (2013)$14,715,88511%3,783--$3,890$28,013,1301Universal
242 (2013)$8,001,51353%3,250247$2,462$49,251,1872Warner Bros.
3The Croods$4,412,16098%3,435-254$1,284$152,042,1535Fox / DreamWorks Animation
4Scary Movie 5$2,818,70636%3,4020$829$21,532,1702Weinstein / Dimension
5G.I. Joe: Retaliation$2,637,07271%3,175-360$831$109,619,5494Paramount
6The Place Beyond the Pines$2,183,48354%1,5421028$1,416$10,326,1544Focus
7Olympus Has Fallen$2,055,90165%2,638-297$779$87,600,2305FilmDistrict
8Jurassic Park 3D$1,852,35073%2,330-448$795$37,395,3253Universal
9Evil Dead$1,741,17528%2,823-202$617$47,447,2613Sony / TriStar
10Oz: The Great and Powerful$1,435,61288%2,045-459$702$222,922,3547Disney
11Tyler Perry's Temptation$1,018,39155%1,405-400$725$48,341,1984Lionsgate
12The Host (2013)$460,01149%1,356-816$339$24,946,8754Open Road

Limited (100 — 999)

#TitleSat, Apr. 20 2013LocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Filly Brown$406,155-40%188--$2,160$1,082,8431Lionsgate / Pantelion
2The Call$400,44757%977-653$410$49,878,1466Sony / TriStar
3Silver Linings Playbook$270,79083%867416$312$130,902,36223Weinstein Company
4Identity Thief$240,00072%480-84$500$132,570,39511Universal
5The Lords of Salem$204,613-28%355--$576$489,8551Anchor Bay Films
6Trance$182,74160%4435$413$1,719,6523Fox Searchlight
7Admission$168,09968%485-424$347$17,379,1225Focus
8Side Effects (2013)$138,86378%645592$215$31,719,70611Open Road
9The Sapphires$124,75894%11421$1,094$1,071,8685Weinstein Company
10Jack the Giant Slayer$99,18678%255-76$389$63,206,0518Warner Bros. / New Line
11Safe Haven$97,22452%32548$299$70,828,58210Relativity Media
12Life of Pi$75,71879%193-24$392$124,481,07022Fox
13Quartet$72,60788%176-48$413$17,800,02715Weinstein Company
14Warm Bodies$68,55262%240-39$286$66,078,76712Lionsgate / Summit
15Escape From Planet Earth$67,755100%240-36$282$54,806,56610Weinstein Company
16The Incredible Burt Wonderstone$67,34747%265-9$254$22,295,6446Warner Bros. / New Line
17A Good Day to Die Hard$43,06767%170-40$253$67,127,09710Fox
18Spring Breakers$41,49126%122-304$340$13,802,9546A24
19Girl Rising$37,14029%170--$218$816,6627Gathr Films
20Snitch (2013)$37,04752%161-54$230$42,092,7789Lionsgate / Summit
21Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters$27,35286%112-42$244$55,662,53913Paramount

Platform (1 — 99)

#TitleSat, Apr. 20 2013LocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1From Up on Poppy Hill$33,17677%48-1$691$700,1296GKIDS
2Dark Skies$30,78649%9166$338$17,276,4999Weinstein / Dimension
3Parental Guidance$27,55383%900$306$77,171,88417Fox
4Django Unchained$18,93882%77-49$246$162,750,99917Weinstein Company
521 And Over$16,42032%50-57$328$25,495,1578Relativity Media
6Camp (2013)$15,692-31%32--$490$219,1959Freestyle Releasing
7To the Arctic 3D$15,118-28%520$291$12,188,09653Warner Bros. / IMAX
8Starbuck$12,25564%29-3$423$3,690,5805eOne Films US
9Emperor$11,75682%64-32$184$3,266,4227Roadside Attractions
10Argo$7,68346%43-129$179$136,015,53328Warner Bros.
11The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey$7,68325%51-4$151$302,996,25319Warner Bros. / New Line
12Not Today$6,91912%20-21$346$132,1632Freestyle Releasing
13Born to Be Wild 3D$6,437-16%300$215$22,490,966107Warner Bros. / IMAX
14Un Flic (2013 re-issue)$4,74660%1--$4,746$7,7101Rialto Pictures
15Stoker$4,44451%28-2$159$1,688,1348Fox Searchlight
16Settai$2,10593%2-13$1,053$83,4863UTV Motion Pictures
17Free Angela and All Political Prisoners$1,265102%2-11$633$123,3703CodeBlack Films
18Kai Po Che$514179%21$257$1,121,5949UTV Motion Pictures
19Pawn$396-72%1--$396$1,8341Anchor Bay Films
20Himmatwala$52--1-2$52$270,7994UTV Motion Pictures