Studio Weekend Estimates: ‘Doctor Strange’ ($43.0M) and ‘Trolls’ ($35.0M) Repeat At 1st and 2nd Place; ‘Arrival’ Arrives 3rd w/ $24.0M; ‘Almost Christmas’ 4th w/ $15.5M

Disney’s Doctor Strange took first place for the second consecutive frame with an estimated $43.03 million this weekend, down only 49.4 percent. The Marvel superhero film posted the lowest second-weekend decline among the many 2016 superhero films, due to its positive word of mouth, great reviews, and release outside the crowded summer season. For second weekend comparisons, August’s Suicide Squad dropped 67.4 percent, May’s Captain America: Civil War declined 59.5 percent, March’s Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice tanked 69.1 percent, May’s X-Men: Apocalypse fell 65.3 percent, and February’s Deadpool was cut 57.4 percent.

Doctor Strange has now earned a strong $153.01 million total through two weekends. The Harry Potter spinoff Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them premieres next Friday and will almost certainly end Strange’s first-place perch. But Doctor Strange has helped lift distributor Disney to new heights, as on Saturday Walt Disney Studios broke its yearly box office previous record by reaching $2.3084 billion this year domestically, beating last year’s total of $2.2786 billion. The studio has been posting by far the best box office results this year, at more than $600 million ahead of its nearest competitor Warner Bros.

Fox and DreamWorks’ Trolls repeated at second place with an estimated $35.05 million, down a mild 24.7 percent. The animated movie has earned an estimated $94.01 million total through two weekends. With no animated competition until Disney’s animated musical Moana opens two weekends from now, Trolls seems likely to experience another mild drop next weekend as well.

The top debut this weekend was Paramount’s Arrival, coming in third place with an estimated $24.00 million. The science-fiction drama thriller starring Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, and Forest Whitaker rode on the strength of its incredibly positive reviews, posting a 93 percent average score on Rotten Tomatoes, with the next-highest wide release being Doctor Strange with 90 percent. Arrival started with an estimated $9.38 million on Friday, declined an estimated 3.8 percent on Saturday to $9.02 million, and is projected to fall 37.9 percent on Sunday to $5.60 million. This places its opening weekend to Friday ratio at an estimated 2.55 to 1.

In fourth place was Universal’s new holiday film Almost Christmas, debuting with an estimated $15.56 million. The first of three wide release Christmas-themed films to open this holiday season, the film sported an A- CinemaScore from an audience that was 71 percent African American, the target audience for the movie with an almost entirely black cast. It started with an estimated $5.90 million on Friday, increased an estimated 2.3 percent on Saturday to $6.03 million, and is projected to decline 39.9 percent on Sunday to $3.62 million. How will the film hold up over the next month and a half? That depends in part on how its competitors Office Christmas Party and Bad Santa 2 perform, but a fourth-place start is not the most encouraging sign.

EuropaCorp’s horror thriller Shut In started with an estimated $3.70 million opening and seventh place. Playing in 2,058 theaters, this ranks among the worst openings ever for a movie playing on 2,000 or more screens, coming in the bottom 30 films of all time adjusted for inflation according to that metric. (Several of the other films ranking below it were fellow 2016 releases including September’s The Wild Life, March’s The Brothers Grimsby, October’s Max Steel, and September’s Morgan.) The Naomi Watts-led title started with an estimated $1.41 million on Friday, improved an estimated 4.9 percent on Saturday to $1.48 million, and is projected to decline 46.1 percent on Sunday to $800 thousand. This places its opening weekend to Friday ratio at an estimated 2.61 to 1.

And A24’s independent release Moonlight continues to impress at the box office, more than doubling its theater count this weekend and taking in $1.36 million. Having already posted the best per-theater average of the year during its opening weekend last month, if the film keeps expanding in weekends to come it could surprise everybody with its cumulative gross, which currently stands at $4.77 million to date.

The top 10 films this weekend made an estimated total $145.34 million. That’s 19.5 percent behind the $180.66 million earned by the top 10 last weekend, but an impressive 55.2 percent above the $93.63 million earned by the top 10 on this weekend last year, when Spectre led for the second straight frame with $33.68 million.

One final question: did this past Tuesday’s election results have any impact on the box office? Some predicted that it could, but no clear link is visible. All of the top four films made roughly the same amount this weekend that they were tentatively predicted to as of last Monday and Tuesday, prior to Donald Trump’s victory. However, none of those films had a clear political message. It remains to be seen how remaining 2016 releases with a clear political bent, such as Miss Sloane about the firearm industry and gun control or Loving about interracial marriage (once it expands wider beyond its existing limited release)could be impacted at the box office, if at all.

Overseas Update:

Just as it was last weekend, Doctor Strange was absolutely dominant at the overseas box office. After debuting last weekend with a stunning $118.7 million, it fell 49.3 percent (virtually identical to its domestic drop) to an estimated $60.2 million overseas weekend in 53 markets. The movie has now earned $339.6 million overseas and a $492.6 million global total. Top markets to date include $83.5 million in China, $37.1 million in South Korea, $24.2 million in the United Kingdom, and $20.0 million in Russia.

Trolls also came in strong with an estimated $18.3 million overseas weekend, down 38.9 percent, in 68 markets. The film has now earned $128.2 million overseas for a $222.3 million global total. Top markets to date include $24.6 million in the United Kingdom, $16.7 million in France, $11.1 million in Russia, and $7.3 million in China.

Studio Weekend Estimates for Friday, November 11 – Sunday, November 13, 2016:

WIDE (1000+)

# TITLE WEEKEND LOCATIONS AVG. TOTAL WKS. DIST.
1 Doctor Strange $43,032,000 -49% 3,882 0 $11,085 $153,014,169 2 Disney
2 Trolls $35,050,000 -25% 4,066 6 $8,620 $94,014,315 2 Fox / DreamWorks Animation
3 Arrival $24,000,000 2,317 $10,358 $24,000,000 1 Paramount
4 Almost Christmas $15,564,000 2,376 $6,551 $15,564,000 1 Universal
5 Hacksaw Ridge $10,775,000 -29% 2,971 85 $3,627 $32,264,321 2 Lionsgate
6 The Accountant $4,570,000 -22% 2,342 -346 $1,951 $77,725,755 5 Warner Bros.
7 Shut In $3,700,000 2,058 $1,798 $3,700,000 1 EuropaCorp Films
8 Tyler Perry’s Boo! A Madea Halloween $3,550,000 -54% 2,104 -130 $1,687 $70,408,079 4 Lionsgate
9 Jack Reacher: Never Go Back $3,325,000 -39% 2,584 -495 $1,287 $54,586,711 4 Paramount
10 Ouija: Origin of Evil $1,783,000 -54% 1,538 -842 $1,159 $34,293,090 4 Universal
11 The Girl on the Train (2016) $1,677,000 -38% 1,008 -564 $1,664 $73,380,130 6 Universal

LIMITED (100 — 999)

# TITLE WEEKEND LOCATIONS AVG. TOTAL WKS. DIST.
1 Moonlight (2016) $1,360,802 10% 176 93 $7,732 $4,778,462 4 A24
2 Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children $1,245,000 -39% 955 -755 $1,304 $85,192,107 7 Fox
3 Keeping Up with the Joneses $550,000 -50% 510 -554 $1,078 $14,276,578 4 Fox
4 Deepwater Horizon $407,000 -46% 390 -393 $1,044 $60,597,287 7 Lionsgate / Summit
5 Ae Dil Hai Mushkil $275,000 -65% 163 -133 $1,687 $4,108,896 3 FIP
6 Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life $270,000 -33% 226 -259 $1,195 $19,568,578 6 CBS Films / Lionsgate
7 Pete’s Dragon (2016) $228,000 135% 179 89 $1,274 $75,812,483 14 Disney
8 Kevin Hart: What Now? $167,000 -71% 196 -257 $852 $23,484,850 5 Universal
9 Finding Dory $161,000 5% 140 -20 $1,150 $486,094,009 22 Disney
10 Denial $153,405 -48% 121 -97 $1,268 $3,844,406 7 Bleeker Street
11 Queen of Katwe $129,000 -11% 118 -54 $1,093 $8,620,876 8 Disney
12 Certain Women $117,000 -37% 117 -21 $1,000 $938,115 5
13 Hell or High Water $62,000 -29% 113 -31 $549 $26,970,197 14 CBS Films / Lionsgate

PLATFORM (1 — 99)

# TITLE WEEKEND LOCATIONS AVG. TOTAL WKS. DIST.
1 Loving $532,000 233% 46 42 $11,565 $740,191 2 Focus
2 The Eagle Huntress $209,002 298% 31 27 $6,742 $297,446 2 Sony Pictures Classics
3 Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk $120,300 2 $60,150 $120,300 1 Sony / TriStar
4 Elle (2016) $56,012 2 $28,006 $56,012 1 Sony Pictures Classics
5 Mr. Donkey $55,535 -32% 27 3 $2,057 $305,528 3 China Lion
6 Snowden $49,338 -24% 83 -32 $594 $21,564,338 9 Open Road
7 I’m Not Ashamed $48,000 -56% 85 -46 $565 $2,041,980 4 Pure Flix
8 American Pastoral $46,000 -46% 59 -11 $780 $507,372 4 Lionsgate
9 Christine (2016) $31,280 -18% 57 17 $549 $211,561 5 The Orchard
10 Harry & Snowman $30,000 -13% 15 -5 $2,000 $426,037 7 FilmRise
11 The Love Witch $23,000 6 $3,833 $23,000 1 Oscilloscope Pictures
12 The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – The Touring Years $21,597 -18% 21 -19 $1,028 $2,841,845 9 Abramorama
13 Don’t Think Twice $11,884 -21% 10 -2 $1,188 $4,402,050 17 The Film Arcade
14 Priceless (2016) $11,500 -61% 21 -22 $548 $1,485,664 5 Roadside Attractions
15 Disturbing The Peace $9,798 2 $4,899 $9,798 1 Abramorama
16 Greater $4,212 -19% 3 -2 $1,404 $1,985,146 12 Hammond Entertainment
17 National Bird $4,000 1 $4,000 $4,000 1 FilmRise
Jesse Rifkin

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