A quieter weekend after ‘Toy Story’s franchise-best opening last week sees 2 new films open in wide release, while ‘Avengers: Endgame’ gets a cheeky expansion to push it over ‘Avatar’s record gross due to added bonus content. The latest in ‘The Conjuring’s cinematic universe, ‘Annabelle Comes Home’, opened into 3,600 cinemas on Wednesday, and looks to end the weekend clear of $30m. In its way is Danny Boyle’s feel-good comedy ‘Yesterday’, which’ll need to find its voice if it’s going to conjure up a surprise against the Warner Bros horror sequel.
So, what’s opening this weekend?
The latest release in the Conjurverse, ‘Annabelle 3’, looks to join what has rapidly become the most successful horror franchise ever. With 4 of the films (‘The Nun’, ‘The Conjuring’, ‘The Conjuring 2’, and ‘Annabelle: Creation’) sitting in the top 10 highest grossing horrors of all-time list worldwide, ‘Annabelle 3’, which opened on Wednesday to $7.2m, will hope to emulate the success of at ‘Creation’ at least, which earned $305.4m at the global Box Office.
It’ll have to up its game domestically, that’s for sure. Its Wednesday opening falls behind that of ‘The First Purge’s $9.3m, with the film going on to earn $31.3m in its 1st 5 days (although opening on July 4th was a major help). It’s looking like a similar 5-day opening for ‘Annabelle 3’, with a Friday-Sunday of $18m by far the lowest in the franchise.
The film, which boasts one of the biggest budgets out of the 7 films thus far with $27m, sees 1st-time director (but writer of 3 previous Conjurverse films) Gary Dauberman team up with the returning Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga, as well as newbie McKenna Grace. Wilson and Fermiga, playing demonologists Ed & Lorraine Warren, attempt to keep the demon doll Annabelle locked away safely in their home, with unexpected results. Another unexpected result, perhaps, is the growing possibility of ‘Annabelle 3’ failing to meet the $100m domestic mark, just the 2nd Conjurverse film to do so (after ‘Annabelle’ in 2014).
There’s a silver lining, however. This is a franchise that’s relied on its international totals to break into that worldwide top 10 list mentioned above, with over $1bn (or 65%) made overseas, compared to the $600m earned in the U.S. ‘Annabelle 3’ can therefore look towards markets like Mexico, South Korea, Brazil, and the U.K. to aid what’s unfortunately a weak domestic start.
Following closely is ‘Yesterday’, the comedy-musical from the mind of Danny Boyle. Opening in just under 3,000 cinemas, the film, starring former Eastenders actor Himesh Patel (alongside Lily James, Ed Sheeran, and Kate McKinnon), sees Jack Malick (Patel) wake up to discover the world no longer remembers The Beatles.
The feel-good fantasy has scored an okay 63% on Rotten Tomatoes, but will hope for a stronger audience reaction, coupled with the success of musicals at the Box Office recently, to help its legs in the summer period, as its $12m forecasted opening will need all the help it can get.
Finally, ‘Endgame’ expands into 2,000 cinemas this weekend, with the promise of bonus content, and some new post-credit stings. Whether an obvious ploy for the title of the biggest film of all time, or simply supplying more content to hungry, demanding fans, it’ll see a boost close to $7m this weekend, enough to catapult the film back into the top 10.
What else is on?
There’s little to worry about for ‘Toy Story 4’, who will earn $62m this weekend to push its domestic total closer to $250m. It’s a 49% drop, similar to predecessor ‘Toy Story 3’ (-46.2%) and ‘Finding Dory’ (-46%), which is welcome news to Disney who must contend with Spider-Man: Far From Home’s opening in just a few days time.