Weekend Box Office Feb. 3-5 (Strong Opening for ‘I Am Not Your Negro’ + ‘Hidden Figures’ Continues to Excel)


Magnolia Pictures

It’s been a slow weekend for both new releases and box office, as studios appear to be holding onto their big titles until next week, with “The Lego Batman Movie”, “John Wick Chapter 2” and “Fifty Shades Darker” (no snickering please) all set to premiere next Friday, so the pickings this weekend are slim.

But here we go again; another weekend, and another sequel that no one asked for that underperformed at the box office. This weekend it was “Rings” – the who-asked-for-it sequel to 2002’s horror film hit, “The Ring”, itself a remake of the Japanese horror film, “Ringu”, which was a surprise success that grossed over $129 million in the States, and $250 million worldwide. Naturally, that was followed by a sequel three years later titled “Ring 2”, which wasn’t as successful, earning only $76 million domestically and $100 million less than the first “Ring” film worldwide.

So you would think that audiences have been “Ring”-ed out, but Paramount, looking for a hit, thought inexplicably that audiences were in the mood to see yet another sequel to a movie that played itself out 12 years ago. And though “Rings” actually was made for $20 million less than the first “Ring” movie, it looks like a non-starter, since it only opened to $13 million, coming in second place this weekend. The good news is that it did better overseas, drawing about $15 million, meaning Paramount will probably still come out ahead once the film has finished its run. But whether another “Rings” movie will be produced is now uncertain. The studio will take what it can get, since they had a lousy 2016 box office, and 2017 looks grim for them.

Number 1 for the third weekend in a row, is M. Night Shyamalan’s suspense thriller “Split”, which grossed just over $14.5 million this weekend, for almost $100 million domestic, and $142 million worldwide. Though reviews still remain split (ha-ha) on the film, it’s somehow capturing audiences and getting some very good word of mouth. Perhaps some kind reader who has seen the film can tell us why it’s proven to be so popular (without giving away any spoilers, mind you).

“Hidden Figures” continues to pull in solid numbers, again with the lowest per week drop off of any movie; meaning that, not only is word-of-mouth very strong (is there anyone who doesn’t like this film? I doubt it), it’s also getting repeat business. It came in fourth this weekend with just over $10 million, and looks even more certain to do at least $150 million domestically (it’s earned almost $120 million as of this weekend). The film continues to expand overseas with just $3 million to date (Spain accounts for half of that with $1.5 million, once again disproving the lie that black films don’t do well overseas).

SPX’s sci-fi film for teenagers, “The Space Between Us”, was the big loser this weekend, earning $3.8 million, which is perhaps not so surprising since SPX held back the release of the film twice until finally opening it this weekend, which means that they likely knew that they had a loser on their hands.

And Weinstein Company’s film “Lion” finally opened wider on 1400 screens, but it’s still struggling to catch fire, grossing only $4 million to date.

But to end with some excellent news – the opening box office for Raoul Peck’s acclaimed James Baldwin documentary, “I Am Not You Negro”, which premiered in a limited release on just 43 screens nationwide this weekend, earned a total of $709,500, or $16,000 per screen, giving it the highest per screen average for any film in release in the top 25 this weekend. Magnolia Pictures, the film’s distributor, will continue to broaden its release so that it reaches an even wider audience. To find out when and where exactly it’ll screen in your city, click here.

The rest of the story below:

1) Split Uni. $14,584,485 Total: $98,700,950
2) Rings Par. $13,000,000
3) A Dog’s Purpose Uni. $10,824,830 Total $32,926,095
4) Hidden Figures Fox $10,100,000 Total $119,402,095
5) La La Land LG/S $7,450,000 Total $118,306,924
6) Resident Evil: The Final Chapter SGem $4,500,000 Total $21,851,775
7) Sing Uni. $4,080,715 Total $262,907,195
8) Lion Wein. $4,006,000 Total $24,711,674
9) The Space Between Us STX $3,820,000
10) xXx: The Return of Xander Cage Par. $3,700,000 Total $40,024,887
11) Rogue One: A Star Wars Story BV $2,933,000 Total $524,642,512
12) Monster Trucks Par. $2,120,000 Total $31,114,593


  1. I am so happy that Raoul Peck’s I am not your Negro did well in 43 theaters! I really hope he wins the Oscar for best documentary film. From what I have read, Raoul really put in the work in creating something unique in documentary filmmaking! Kudos to him for doing so!

    You stated you didn’t know of anyone who didn’t like the film Hidden Figures. Well look no further than S&A very own resident complainer CareyCarey. He hated the film! For the box-office results dated Jan 13-15, CareyCarey said, “Really, I didn’t know Hollywood was in the habit of making films with three very strong positive roles for black women? Anyway, as I said, in spite of the alleged positive roles of 3 black women, I hated it for the following reasons.”

    I wished you had keep us updated of the progress of the other black films like Moonlight and Fences. Like you predicted long before Oscar noms, you said that Moonlight will hit the 20 million mark. Well, it is very close to that amount. Moonlight has $19, 639,551 and Fences made $52, 716, 020. Pretty good numbers for small art house films!

    All I know are horror and suspense/thriller films make a lot of money and they do not cost a lot to make. I’m not talking about mediocre thrillers like The Perfect Guy, No Good Deeds and When the Bough Breaks or weak horror films like Boo! I’m talking about original horror films like Don’t Breathe. I hope more black filmmakers and screenwriters consider those genres when they create a project!

    • You know Carey coming back at you harder than a mother with a box of fire cracker and toothpicks?

      • So? I’m not lying on CareyCarey. I just quoted what he said. FYI, Since when am I scared of a box of fire crackers and some toothpicks? I throw water on fire crackers and toothpicks usually breaks!

    • Perhaps I should have keep tracking Moonlight but for several weeks it seemed stuck between $15-16 million and I thought that was as far as it would go. but now that it’s close to $20 million (which I did predict) it looks like it got an Oscar boost. I keep talking to people who are just now seeing it. Looks like it could hit $22 mil at this point

  2. I think Hidden Figures may win Best Picture.
    La La Land is the obvious favorite, but I can see them giving Damien Chazelle the Oscar for Best Director as a consolation prize and then shock everyone with HF for the grand prize.
    #OscarsSoWhite had an impact on Hollywood and I can see them doing this, patting themselves on the back, and then going back to business as usual until we protest again.

    • I agree with you. I think the momentum was with La La land but that has been cooling especially after more people saw it and realized that that there’s nothing to it. The big dance mucial numbers come during the first 15 minutes of the movie and after that nothing just a thin story with two very bland people. Hidden Figures is a safe choice that no one could argue with. And also because as I have written about last week there’s nothing in regards to black actors or black films coming out this year that would be Oscar bait at all for 2018

      • Forget about it. Donald Trump will sing “Lift Every Voice and Sing” before Hidden Figures wins the Oscar. But you are right Solaam, #OscarsSoWhite did have an impact on Hollywood. That explains the mediocre black films and actors get nominations. There’s no way, other than because of the protests of #OscarsSoWhite, that Moonlight would be considered outstanding in any category. Not to mention the jokes on y’alls film, Hidden Figures,

        That reminds me, for once DTroubleMaker wasn’t talking out of the back of his neck. Yeah I said it, in spite of the alleged positive roles of 3 black women ( positively corny, sappy and over the top), I hated it for the additional following reasons.

        Now don’t take this ass whoopin’ p-p-p-personally but first, it was nothing but a cloaked white savior flick. That’s right, y’all know it’s true, that good ol’ caring white guy, Al Harrison (Kevin Costner) rescued the po’ black woman who had to run a gotdamn mile to the rest room or sh*t on herself. He sure was good to his house negros… I mean black co-workers. Wasn’t that courageous of him to take a baseball bat to the “Whites Only” restroom sign? He could have been called nigg*r lover for that act of kindness. I shake with fear when I think of the horror of it all. REALLY… NO, not really, come on, I almost puked when he said “There’s only one color here at this NASA.”

        And wait, did any of your arms grow tired from catching the little bones they threw our way? Well, aside from the customary snide jokes we’re allowed to crack (behind their backs) did any of you cringed at the scene in which the black women, lead by every-bodies mammy, Octavia Spencer, was walking down the hall mean-muggin’ folks with Rocky’s theme song playing in the background,? Come on now, that was nothing but a bone thrown our way because we all know they would have been marched right out the front door, without passing GO and without collecting 200 dollars.
        But I know, what about all the inspirational messages in the movie and the uncovering of a lost piece of our history?

        Well, actually, although this is my 4th reason for hating Hidden Fences, the following piece of propaganda pisses me off the most. Sad but true, this film shouted the same messages I heard in the movies The Help, The Butler and Selma. That is, a person can deny others (read black folks) their rights, call them horrible names (coon, BOY, NIGG*, SAMBO) while being a closet racist, a possible Xenophobe, a misogynist and a dick head bully, without fear of ANY negative consequences. That’s the gotdamn message I heard loud and clear. And it pisses me off that this film is being championed as something great.

        In short, I know my comment is not a popular opinion, but one shouldn’t deny the truth. Again “we’ve” been used, bamboozled and led astray… and yet we smile and say “I think Hidden Figures may win Best Picture.“ … and Sergio smiles back and says “I agree with you. I think the momentum was with La La land but that has been cooling especially after more people saw it and realized that that there’s nothing to it.”

        WOW… me-oh-my, but now it all makes since, why not shine a light on the black drug dealer, his crack head customer and a film on the emasculation of the black man? Unlike La La Land, there’s a lot going on there, right?

        Anyway, one more time, forget about it, Donald Trump will sing “Lift Every Voice and Sing” often referred to as the “Black American National Anthem” before Hidden Figures wins the Oscar.

  3. Hidden Fences has a chance don’t it? Jenna Bush must know. Hidden Figures was corny. It wins a SAG award so now we’re all excited. Please. Bland usually wins. I mean who wrote Hidden Figures? Exactly. That’s alright, Girls Trip is coming out.

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