“Barbenheimer” continued to exert a massive impact on the box office in its second weekend. When they opened last weekend, BARBIE and OPPENHEIMER together grossed $244.5M, pushing the total for all films to $311.3M, the fourth highest ever in North America.
The two movies delivered an additional $139.2M over the past three days, which puts their ten-day domestic total at $525.5M. For the moment, concerns over Hollywood’s labor impasse have receded into the shadows, as exhibitors celebrate their sizeable profits.
Putting this into historical perspective, if they were combined into a single movie, BARBIE, and OPPENHEIMER together would be the fifth biggest domestic opening of all time, with their $162.0M + $82.5 ($244.5M) coming in just below that of STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS which earned $248.0M on its pre-Christmas opening weekend of December 18-20, 2015. AVENGERS: ENDGAME is the top box office performer in history, earning $621.3M in its first ten days from April 26-May 5, 2019, compared with Barbenheimer’s $525.5M to date.
The stellar debut for BARBIE and Oppenheimer is impressive, but their lasting impact will depend on how well they maintain interest in subsequent weeks. To no one’s surprise, BARBIE cruised to a first-place finish in its second weekend with $93.0M, a respectable drop of only 43% from last weekend. After 10 days, the Mattel toy star has sold $351.4M domestically and will certainly become one of the top-grossing pictures of the year. This chart shows how BARBIE compares in the domestic market to the highest-grossing pictures of the year.
Comparing BARBIE to Other High-Grossing Movies in 2023
THE SUPER MARIO BROS. MOVIE (4/5/23)
- Total Weekend #2: $92.3M (-37%), Total After 12 Days **: $353.1, Total To-Date: $574.1M
- Total Weekend #2: $93.0M (-43%), Total After 10 Days: $351.4, Total To-Date: $351.4M
SPIDER-MAN: ACROSS THE SPIDER-VERSE (6/2/23)
- Total Weekend #2: $55.5M (-54%), Total After 10 Days: $225.2M, Total To-Date: $377.4M
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 3 (5/5/23)
- Total Weekend #2: $62.0M (-48%), Total After 10 Days: $214.7M, Total To-Date: $358.9M
THE LITTLE MERMAID (5/26/23)
- Total Weekend #2: $41.4M (-57%), Total After 10 Days: $186.0M, Total To-Date: $296.6M
** SUPER MARIO’s Total Thru Weekend #2 includes 12 days sales, after its Wednesday opening.
BARBIE is well on its way to becoming the second-highest gross of the year behind THE SUPER MARIO BROS. MOVIE. This weekend’s drop of 43% indicates that it should continue to hold up well, even in the face of Wednesday’s arrival of TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES: MUTANT MAYHEM.
SUPER MARIO’s success was built on sustained performance over time, having only modest declines in the mid-30 % over its first four weekends. BARBIE is on track for a similar performance after a strong debut and second weekend. We expect BARBIE to last well through Labor Day and perhaps approach SUPER MARIO’s totals when all is said and done.
OPPENHEIMER finished in second place once again, putting up impressive numbers with $46.2M and a drop of only 44% from last weekend. Christopher Nolan’s historical epic has impressed with a ten-day domestic gross of $174.1M, despite its competition with BARBIE and limiting its potential audience by having an R-Rating. OPPENHEIMER will soon become the top R-Rated film of the year, surpassing the $187.1M domestic total from JOHN WICK 4.
It has a chance to become the highest-grossing R-Rated film of all time, with the current record held by THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST which earned $370.8M in its run that began on February 25, 2004. Note that THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST had earned $213.8M after its first two weekends, compared with OPPENHEIMER’s current total of $174.1M.
The common trait for all box office record holders is long theatrical runs with limited drops from week to week. OPPENHEIMER should follow this course, having glowing reviews from critics and audiences, and creating positive word-of-mouth to drive ticket sales and awards consideration.
Disney’s HAUNTED MANSION slotted into third place with $24.2M in its opening weekend, which was on the lower end of pre-release industry projections. Inspired by the classic theme park attraction, this horror comedy tells the story of a woman and her son who enlist the help of a motley crew of spiritual experts to rid their home of supernatural squatters.
It features a strong cast with Owen Wilson, Tiffany Haddish, Jamie Lee Curtis, Jared Leto, and Danny DeVito. The critics have savaged this film with a lowly 41% score on Rotten Tomatoes, while audiences are much more positive with an 82% rating. This is the second screen adaptation of Disney’s spooky Magic Kingdom ride, with the original THE HAUNTED MANSION movie starring Eddie Murphy, Jennifer Tilly, and Terrance Stamp released to Thanksgiving moviegoers over the weekend of November 26-28, 2003.
The 2003 feature began with $24.3M in its opening weekend and went on to earn $75.8M domestic and $182.3M worldwide on a $90M production budget. Considering the average ticket price in 2003 was $6.03, approximately 4 moviegoers saw the first HAUNTED movie in its opening weekend. Using the current average ticket price of $10.53, this year’s audience adds up to approximately 2.3M, or 42% fewer.
After investing $150M in the film, Disney finds itself once again on the hot seat. Coming after ELEMENTAL and INDIANA JONES AND THE DIAL OF DESTINY, this is their third release in a row not to reach profitability. With “Barbenheimer” still raging and MUTANT TURTLES coming out of the sewers next week, it will be a challenge for HAUNTED MANSION to maintain a respectable run with meaningful ticket sales.
SOUND OF FREEDOM continues to be one of the top movies in theatres, grossing $12.4M this weekend for a fourth-place finish and a drop of only 37% from last weekend, the lowest decline of any of the top five movies. FREEDOM has earned $149.0M in North America in the 27 days since it opened on Tuesday, July 4th.
The film may cross $200M in domestic sales, on a production budget of $16M which would amount to a 12X multiple, unheard of in the post-COVID era. Angel Studios is just finishing up plans for an international release, where anything it earns will be a bonus. FREEDOM’s surprising success has led many to consider how it can be reproduced.
MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE – DEAD RECKONING PART ONE finished in an unceremonious fifth place, with only $10.7M and a drop of 45% from last weekend. After 19 days, the latest MI sequel has earned $139.2M, compared with the last outing MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE- FALLOUT which had $160.4M domestic through its third weekend and $220.2M for its entire run.
At this point, DEAD RECKONING PART ONE is on track to come in under $200M in its domestic total. After struggling mightily from its competition with “Barbenheimer”, you can bet that Tom Cruise will not be caught off guard again by losing the availability of IMAX screens to top-tier competition.
All movies in theatres this weekend earned $213.9 domestic, compared with $99.8M last year when DC LEAGUE OF SUPER-PETS opened to $23.0M.
WHERE ARE WE AS OF 7/27
After factoring in results from the first week of the BARBIE and OPPENHEIMER openings the year-to-date comparison of 2023 to 2022 after 29 weeks jumped by six percentage points up to 118%. 2023 is still only 83% compared to results at this point in 2019, which was 2 percentage points higher than where it stood as of last week.