MCN Columnists
Leonard Klady

By Leonard Klady Klady@moviecitynews.com

The Weekend Report

The debut of Ride Along 2 shifted into top gear and was ahead of the pack with an estimated $34 million (all figures reflect 3-day portion of weekend). Two other films bowed nationally for the Martin Luther King holiday frame. The based-on-headlines 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi slotted fourth with $15.7 million while the low-budget animated Norm of the North opened to $6.6 million.

Exclusive bows were largely dull, save for The Lady in the Van, which parked $68,400 in four driveways. In the niches, Indian holidays saw the debut of four Telugu movies, with strong bows for Nannaku Prematho and Soggade Chinni Nayana, with respective box office of $938,000 and $437,000. The Filipino All You Need is Pag-ibig was a disappointment with $114,000 from 59 playdates. Conversely, China import Detective Chinatown generated a potent $271,000 from 33 engagements.

Revenues for the session topped $160 million for the three days and were a near carbon copy of last weekend’s results. It was 22% diminished from 2015 when the national break of American Sniper grossed a jaw-dropping $107.2 million for the full four-day MLK holiday.

When the original Ride Along debuted two years ago, the critical community had the knives out but it cruised along to success with a breezy mix of comedy and action. The new film received comparable love and only slightly diminished commercial appeal. Studio exit demos identified the audience 52% female with 55% of viewers aged 25-years and younger. While it was no great surprise that 34% were African American, a comparable percent identified as Hispanic.

It may not go into evidence at House investigations, but 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi opened to reflected interest in the Libyan incident. It’s likely not to have the enduring hold of the former with the 55% male crowd and 79% that aged 25-years and older.

In the aftermath of Oscar announcements, contenders saw dramatic upticks at the box office including front-line entries Spotlight, Brooklyn and Room as well as foreign-language short-listers Son of Saul and Mustang. Though hardly a tidal wave of interest, the expansions underlined how significant Academy attention is as both promotional tool and a lever to open up screens, particularly for what we now consider alternative options.

Weekend (estimates) January 15 – 17, 2016
Title Distributor Gross (average) % chng Thtrs Cume
Ride Along 2 Uni 34.0 (10,700) NEW 3175 34
The Revenant Fox 29.6 (8,320) -26% 3559 87.8
Star Wars: The Force Awakens BV 25.2 (6,590) -41% 3822 851.1
13 Hours: Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Par 15.7 (6,580) NEW 2389 15.7
Daddy’s Home Par 9.1 (2,740) -49% 3322 129.1
Norm of the North Lionsgate 6.6 (2,740) NEW 2411 6.6
The Big Short Par 5.1 (2,890) -17% 1765 50.4
The Forest Focus 5.8 (2,320) -54% 2509 21.1
Sisters Uni 4.4 (1,900) -39% 2313 80.8
The Hateful Eight Weinstein 3.3 (1,390) -48% 2385 47.5
Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Road Chip Fox 2.8 (1,280) -50% 2221 79.6
Joy Fox 2.7 (1,490) -40% 1796 51.3
Brooklyn Fox Searchlight/Mongrel 1.6 (2,370) 54% 687 24.6
Spotlight Open Road/eOne 1.5 (1,550) 65% 985 30.5
Carol Weinstein Co. 1.4 (1,730) -8% 790 9.1
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 Lionsgate 1.1 (1,370) -48% 797 279.3
Creed WB 1.1 (1,220) -29% 878 107.2
The Good Dinosaur BV 1.0 (1,210) -44% 812 118.8
Concussion Sony .96 (920) -68% 1041 33
Nannaku Prematho CineGalaxy .94 (5,300) NEW 177 1.7
Room A24 .66 (2,260) 472% 293 5.9
The Danish Girl Focus .64 (1,340) -24% 479 8.7
Soggade Chinni Nayana Blue Sky .43 (5,470) NEW 79 0.49
Point Break WB .42 (830) -81% 504 27.9
The Martian Fox .41 (1,490) 9% 275 227.1
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $155.20
% Change (Last Year) -22%
% Change (Last Week) 0%
Also debuting/expanding
Anomalisa Par .29 (7,760) 32% 37 0.86
Detective Chinatown Chine Lion .27 (8,210) 33 0.27
Express Raja RedHeart .21 (2,670) 79 0.26
Youth Fox Searchlight .14 (1,460) -25% 94 2.2
All You Need is Pag-Ibig ABS .11 (1,930) 59 0.11
Son of Saul Sony Classics .10 (4,960) 322% 21 0.32
45 Years IFC 94,300 (6,740) 22% 14 0.47
Mustang Cohen Media 91,700 (1,610) 339% 57 0.3
Trumbo Bleecker Street 81,500 (1,230) -29% 66 7.3
The Lady in the Van Sony Classics 68,400 (17,100) 4 0.07
Dictator US Dot 37,200 (590) 63 0.1
Band of Robbers Gravitas 18,600 (1,550) 12 0.02
The Benefactor IDP 11,100 (460) 24 0.01
In the Shadow of Women Distrib 9,800 (4,900) 2 0.01
En quête de sens Chantale Page 9,700 (3,230) 3 0.01
Tharai Thappattai Ayngaran 9,500 (770) 12 0.01
Moonwalkers Alchemy 6,800 (140) 49 0.01
Remember You CJ 4,800 (2,400) 2 0.01

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Leonard Klady's Friday Estimates
Friday Screens % Chg Cume
Title Gross Thtr % Chgn Cume
Venom 33 4250 NEW 33
A Star is Born 15.7 3686 NEW 15.7
Smallfoot 3.5 4131 -46% 31.3
Night School 3.5 3019 -63% 37.9
The House Wirh a Clock in its Walls 1.8 3463 -43% 49.5
A Simple Favor 1 2408 -50% 46.6
The Nun 0.75 2264 -52% 111.5
Hell Fest 0.6 2297 -70% 7.4
Crazy Rich Asians 0.6 1466 -51% 167.6
The Predator 0.25 1643 -77% 49.3
Also Debuting
The Hate U Give 0.17 36
Shine 85,600 609
Exes Baggage 75,900 62
NOTA 71,300 138
96 61,600 62
Andhadhun 55,000 54
Afsar 45,400 33
Project Gutenberg 36,000 17
Love Yatri 22,300 41
Hello, Mrs. Money 22,200 37
Studio 54 5,300 1
Loving Pablo 4,200 15
3-Day Estimates Weekend % Chg Cume
No Good Dead 24.4 (11,230) NEW 24.4
Dolphin Tale 2 16.6 (4,540) NEW 16.6
Guardians of the Galaxy 7.9 (2,550) -23% 305.8
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 4.8 (1,630) -26% 181.1
The Drop 4.4 (5,480) NEW 4.4
Let's Be Cops 4.3 (1,570) -22% 73
If I Stay 4.0 (1,320) -28% 44.9
The November Man 2.8 (1,030) -36% 22.5
The Giver 2.5 (1,120) -26% 41.2
The Hundred-Foot Journey 2.5 (1,270) -21% 49.4