Weekend Estimates: ‘Venom’ ($75M) & ‘A Star Is Born’ ($44M) Reach Lofty Expectations On Record October Weekend

Saturday Update: Sony’s Venom scored an excellent $32.75 million opening day on Friday, with Thursday figures included, setting it on a course to topple Gravity‘s standing $55.8 million October weekend record. The studio is now projecting a $70.5 million three-day haul, although our estimates stand a little more bullish at $75 million — with potential for a bit more.

For comparison purposes, Venom‘s opening came in 3 percent behind Ant-Man and the Wasp ($33.73 million), 1 percent behind Logan ($33.0 million), and 24.5 percent ahead of X-Men: Apocalypse ($26.3 million).

Despite sour reviews from critics and months of lukewarm sentiment scores across social media, early word of mouth for the film itself is leaning more positive than expected with an 89 percent Flixster score and “B+” CinemaScore. Projections could still sway one way or the other as reception beyond the core fan base won’t be accurately measured until after the initial 24-hour rush, but Venom‘s results so far are definitely on the higher end of expectations and will pave the way for a successful financial run.

Further living up to the promise of a big double billing this weekend, A Star Is Born bowed to a stellar $15.8 million opening day with $3.2 million from Thursday grosses included — but excluding $1.35 million from Tuesday/Wednesday pre-screening figures. That gives the film a $17.15 million running total thus far. Boxoffice’s current projection holds to our previous forecasts of around $44 million for the weekend, although the film’s older skewing (86 percent 25+ / 68% 35+ / 42% 50+), female-driven (66 percent women) audience — combined with ecstatic reviews and word of mouth (85 percent Flixster, “A” CinemaScore) — could translate to unique holding patterns in the days and weeks ahead.

Comp-wise, Star came in 10.5 percent ahead of Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again ($14.3 million), 2 percent ahead of Ocean’s 8 ($15.5 million), and 20 percent ahead of Gone Girl ($13.2 million) on opening day.

Early weekend estimates are below. Updated studio estimates to follow on Sunday.

Early Weekend Estimates (Domestic)
FRI, OCT. 5 – SUN, OCT. 7

WIDE (1000+)

# TITLE WEEKEND LOCATIONS AVG. TOTAL WKS. DIST.
1 Venom $75,000,000 4,250 $17,647 $75,000,000 1 Sony / Columbia
2 A Star is Born $44,000,000 3,686 $11,937 $45,350,000 1 Warner Bros.
3 Smallfoot $14,700,000 -36% 4,131 0 $3,558 $42,560,945 2 Warner Bros.
4 Night School $12,500,000 -54% 3,019 9 $4,140 $46,976,355 2 Universal
5 The House With A Clock In Its Walls $7,400,000 -41% 3,463 -129 $2,137 $55,156,560 3 Universal Pictures
6 A Simple Favor $3,500,000 -46% 2,408 -665 $1,453 $49,079,356 4 Lionsgate
7 The Nun $2,600,000 -52% 2,264 -1067 $1,148 $113,357,310 5 Warner Bros.
8 Hell Fest $2,100,000 -59% 2,297 0 $914 $8,889,476 2 Lionsgate / CBS Films
9 Crazy Rich Asians $2,000,000 -51% 1,466 -881 $1,364 $169,074,942 8 Warner Bros.
10 The Predator $1,000,000 -74% 1,643 -1283 $609 $50,085,889 4 Fox
11 Disney’s Christopher Robin $400,000 17% 1,638 968 $244 $98,067,382 10 Disney

LIMITED (100 — 999)

# TITLE WEEKEND LOCATIONS AVG. TOTAL WKS. DIST.
1 White Boy Rick $590,000 -75% 880 -1137 $670 $23,338,086 4 Sony / Studio 8
2 Incredibles 2 $360,000 32% 244 -94 $1,475 $607,205,087 17 Disney
3 Mission: Impossible – Fallout $320,000 -49% 361 -177 $886 $219,752,429 11 Paramount
4 Little Women (2018) $170,000 -76% 451 -192 $377 $1,168,616 2 Pinnacle Peak
5 Unbroken: Path to Redemption $160,000 -67% 335 -406 $478 $5,991,063 4 Pure Flix
6 Ant-Man and the Wasp $150,000 -43% 178 -80 $843 $216,386,826 14 Disney
7 Peppermint $45,000 -97% 813 -1189 $55 $34,288,394 5 STX Entertainment

PLATFORM (1 — 99)

# TITLE WEEKEND LOCATIONS AVG. TOTAL WKS. DIST.
1 Free Solo $725,000 146% 41 37 $17,683 $1,139,911 2 National Geographic Entertainment
2 The Hate U Give $550,000 36 $15,278 $550,000 1 20th Century Fox
3 The Old Man & The Gun $360,000 153% 49 44 $7,347 $550,455 2 Fox Searchlight
4 The Sisters Brothers $185,000 -21% 54 31 $3,426 $671,498 3 Annapurna Pictures
5 A.X.L. $26,000 -28% 55 -30 $473 $6,492,069 7 Global Road Entertainment
6 Ya Veremos $20,000 -62% 37 -21 $541 $4,149,205 6 Lionsgate / Pantelion Films
7 God Bless the Broken Road $20,000 -45% 53 -58 $377 $2,820,644 5 Freestyle Releasing
8 Loving Pablo $15,000 15 $1,000 $15,000 1 Universal Pictures Home Entertainment
9 The Riot Act $15,000 3 $5,000 $15,000 4 Hannover House

===

Friday Update: Sony reports that Venom scored a strong $10 million haul to begin the weekend on Thursday night, setting a new October preview gross record as it surpassed Kingsman: The Golden Circle‘s previous $3.4 million benchmark.

Within the realm of comic book adaptations, Venom came in 13 percent behind Ant-Man and the Wasp ($11.5 million), 5 percent ahead of Logan ($9.5 million), and 22 percent ahead of X-Men: Apocalypse ($8.2 million).

Although the studio is holding to its $55 million weekend projection this morning, comparisons to past titles won’t be particularly reliable since Venom began screenings at 5pm instead of the usual 7pm window, making extrapolations volatile until there’s an idea of Friday proper business. Still, Gravity‘s $55.8 million October record is highly likely to be surpassed.

A Star Is Born got off to a strong start of its own with $4.55 million leading into Friday, $1.35 million of which came from special fan event screenings on Tuesday and Wednesday. Warner Bros. is comparing the take to films like Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again ($3.4 million), Kingsman: The Golden Circle ($3.4 million), The Martian ($2.5 million), and Gone Girl ($1.2 million) — but again, projections are unreliable at this stage given the unique structure of screenings throughout the week and the level of new release competition in the market.

Follow Boxoffice throughout the weekend for further updates.

Shawn Robbins

2 Comments

  1. Avatar
    tommy tune October 06, 2018

    TYPO=sorry Shawn U got NIght School in the #4 & #5 spots –please fix!!

    Reply
    • Avatar
      tommy tune October 06, 2018

      thanks for the quick fix!

      Reply

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