Maleficent managed to enchant audiences and take flight opening weekend while Seth MacFarlane’s sophomore effort, A Million Ways to Die in the West, stumbled out of the gates.
Disney’s gothic fantasy, a PG-rated re-imagining of the classic Sleeping Beauty villain starring Angelina Jolie in the titular role, netted an estimated $70 million from 3,948 locations — $6.7 million of which was from the 347 IMAX screens. Boasting an A Cinema Score, the $180 million pic also brought in $100.6 million internationally from 47 territories (40 percent ahead of Oz: The Great and Powerful), bringing its global cume to a mighty $170.6 million. It opens in China on June 20 and in Japan on July 4.
“We’re feeling great,” Dave Hollis, Disney’s distribution head told EW. “We came into the weekend thinking that we were going to do somewhere around $60 million and to end up with $70 million is a really encouraging start.”
As far as Maleficent’s demographics go, 60 percent of audiences were female, 45 percent families, and 18 percent teens. On Saturday, audiences were strong at all showings, from matinees to late night. “It feels like there’s some momentum and great word-of-mouth helping to propel the picture overall,” said Hollis. “It’s good to see that during the daytime you can be a really meaningful option to families.” But, the late-night business is key, too, he said. It shows that it appeals to a cross-section of demographics. He added: “It’s a nod to the draw of Angelina Jolie. She has had such extraordinary passion for this role.”
Last weekend’s shiny new comic book movie, X-Men: Days of Future Past, plummeted 64 percent in its second weekend with $32.6 million to take the No. 2 spot. Most high-opening actioners are front-loaded, so this wasn’t unexpected, although it is on the higher end. Second weekend falls have been all over the place in this seven-movie franchise. For comparison’s sake, X-Men: The Last Stand fell nearly 67 percent in weekend two, while X-Men: First Class fell only 56 percent. But the Fox saga is doing just fine. The $200 million film has made an estimated $162 million domestically, and $500 million worldwide.
Seth MacFarlane’s A Million Ways to Die in the West (B Cinema Score) did not fare so well, opening in third place with $17.1 million from 3,158 locations. That’s less than half of what Ted opened at in 2012 ($54.4 million), and also below studio and analyst expectations, which assumed that the Western comedy would at least break $20 million. In terms of the audience, 45 percent were female and 28 percent were under 25 for the raunchy R-rated pic. Internationally, A Million Ways opened in 21 territories and brought in $10.3 million, bringing its worldwide total to $27.4 million.
Westerns are historically a tricky genre to track, and combined with the fact that MacFarlane is an untested lead (as himself at least), this was much more of a wildcard than we initially assumed. But, the pic, which reportedly cost a modest $40 million to produce, could have legs amongst MacFarlane’s devotees in the long run. “I’m disappointed. I wouldn’t tell you otherwise,” Nikki Rocco, Universal’s President, Distribution, told EW. “We would have hoped it would have been a little bit better, but it’s not a grave loss to the studio.”
Rounding out the top five are Warner Bros. and Legendary’s Godzilla and Blended (Warner Bros. as well). The King of the Monsters brought in $12.23 million in its third weekend in theaters, bringing its domestic total to $174.66 million. Finally, in weekend two, Adam Sandler’s comedy Blended managed to beat out Neighbors (now in its fourth weekend in theaters) to take the fifth place spot with $8.43 million. The $40 million pic has made an estimated $29.63 million to date, domestically.
Here’s the top five:
1. Maleficent — $70 million (domestic total: $70 million)
2. X-Men: Days of Future Past — $32.6 million (domestic total: $162.1 million)
3. A Million Ways to Die in the West — $17.1 million (domestic total: $17.1 million)
4. Godzilla — $12.23 million (domestic total: $174.66 million)
5. Blended — $8.43 million (domestic total: $29.63 million)
UPDATE: In the specialty box office world, Cinedigm’s Night Moves, starring Jesse Eisenberg as a radical environmentalist, made $24K from two locations. Entertainment One’s The Grand Seduction, starring Brendan Gleeson and Taylor Kitsch, opened in three locations to $18K, and Sebastian Junger’s Korengal made $15K from one location.
Next weekend Warner Bros.’ Edge of Tomorrow, starring Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt, takes on Fox’s teen drama The Fault in Our Stars, starring Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort.