The big news is not that Black Panther was No.1 at the box office this weekend…or that it will continue to be No.1 for at least the next few weeks as well.
But what is the big news, is the fact that it is set to make history yet again.
As you will recall last week, I went into great lengths about whether Black Panther could hit a billion or more worldwide which only 32 films have done since 1993. I said that it was possible, but time would tell and if it did then that would depend on how well it did in China since there has not been a film yet that has grossed the amount without the help of that country. And that country’s reputation, when it comes to black images on the screen, sure isn’t the greatest. Well, it now seems China is moot and that my prediction capabilities were off the mark somewhat. Not only is Black Panther headed to make over a billion worldwide becoming the 33rd film to do so, but that it’s going to do without China which no film has ever done before. And that is not only remarkable, but history-making.
This weekend, Black Panther grossed $65.7 million, pushing it to total $501 million domestically to million making right now it the tenth biggest domestic grosser of all time. But as the weeks go on it will definitely move up the list. And worldwide right now it stands near $900 million, which means next weekend the film will have crossed the $1 billion-dollar mark. Though it opens in China this Friday, it’s almost in a way irrelevant what it does, though it sure doesn’t hurt and adds to the overall worldwide total to the film. Also, keep in mind that the film still remains No. 1 everywhere in Asia.
But the question I have is: Will there be a “Black Panther effect” for Ava DuVernay’s A Wrinkle in Time when it opens this Friday? OK folks, this is where you put your money where your mouth is. You all keep saying that you want to see different black film and images on the screen. No more of the slavery, rom-coms, and over similar stories over and over again, and instead, more complex films with intriguing ideas and non-stereotyped characters and black sci-fi. You got it with Black Panther and you’re getting it again with Wrinkle. Of course, no one is predicting that the film will do Black Panther kind of numbers, but if you are serious about what you want to see, will you be coming out for Wrinkle? Stay tuned for the answer next week.
The Fox spy thriller Red Sparrow failed to live up to Jennifer Lawrence’s so-called star power expectations, with the film coming in a distant second with $17 million. Though the studio can claim it had an unfair disadvantage going up against Black Panther, one suspects that even if Black Panther wasn’t in theaters, Red Sparrow still would have had trouble finding an audience.
Meanwhile, the “who-asked-for-this?” remake of Death Wish directed by Eli Roth was saddled with some major problems. First, the original release date of the film last fall was pushed back after the Las Vegas mass shooting until this month. Then, after the Parkland High School massacre last month, there was thought that MGM would again push back the film. But the studio decided they couldn’t keep delaying the film and no matter when it came out no time would be the right time for the film. Though you would think a film about angry, middle-aged white guy shooting people of color would be right up the alley of Trump lovers, even they didn’t come out for this film. I guess they didn’t want to be caught out in the open.
Sony Animation’s Peter Rabbit is still proving to be an unexpected winter sleeper hit and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is at $928 million worldwide to date is slowly running out of gas and will stop short of reaching the $1B mark that Black Panther will do by next week.
1) Black Panther BV $65,705,000 Total: $501,105,037
2) Red Sparrow Fox $17,000,000
3) Death Wish MGM $13,025,000
4) Game Night WB $10,710,000 Total: $33,537,766
5) Peter Rabbit Sony $10,000,000 Total: $84,060,376
6) Annihilation Par. $5,650,000 Total: $20,636,742
7) Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle Sony $4,500,000 Total: $393,201,353
8) Fifty Shades Freed Uni. $3,310,000 Total: $95,599,460
9) The Greatest Showman Fox $2,675,000 Total: 1 $164,616,443
10) Every Day Orion $1,560,029 Total: $5,260,8332
11) The 15:17 to Paris WB $1,455,000 Total: $35,003,216
12) The Shape of Water FoxS $1,400,000 Total: $57,393,976