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Box office report: 'Focus' beats 'Fifty Shades'

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Frank Masi

Fifty Shades of Grey‘s box office status would have dropped this weekend even without any new releases, but the arrival of crime drama Focus caused it to move all the way from the first to fourth spot in the top five—and signaled that its days as a big box office earner are nearing their end.

This already became obvious in its second weekend, when sales decreased by 74 percent. This weekend’s drop—51 percent—isn’t as steep, but it’s enough to prove that interest in the erotic drama is waning. Plus, viewers had a new drama to watch this weekend: Focus starring Will Smith and Margot Robbie, a film that opened with $19.1 million. 

Many claimed Smith’s reign as box office king was over when his most recent film, 2013’s After Earth, debuted with $27.5 million. But even though Focus‘ $19.1 million is considerably less, it’s a more successful premiere in context: After Earth was a big-budget ($130 million, to be exact) action film that ended up making just $60.5 domestically. Focus is a more low-key film made on a smaller budget ($50 million), and it’s one that performed similarly to its genre peers: The Wolf of Wall Street, another crime drama starring an A-list actor, debuted with $18.4 million in 2013—and that was even with Martin Scorsese’s name and Oscar buzz attached.

Kingsman: The Secret Service, The SpongeBob Movie, Fifty Shades, and horror newcomer The Lazarus Effect rounded out the box office top five—but their weekend estimates are all so close that the order could easily change when the actuals come out Monday.

1. Focus — $19.1 million

2. Kingsman: The Secret Service — $11.8 million

3. The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water — $11.2 million

4. Fifty Shades of Grey — $10.9 million

5. The Lazarus Effect — $10.6 million

While Fifty Shades didn’t have the greatest week here in America, it continues to succeed overseas: It was the number-one film internationally for the third week in a row. Estimates say it made $36 million in 59 territories over the weekend, bringing the international total to $338.4 million and the worldwide total to $486.2 million.

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