1. Monsters University – $47 million [2nd week; $186 million in total ] Last weekend’s champ retained its title while dispatching two thought to be strong contenders making their debuts.
The real test for Pixar’s latest hit comes next Wednesday with the opening of “Despicable Me 2,” direct competition for the summer family dollar.
2. The Heat – $39 million [debut week] A summer movie starring two likable female leads in an action comedy as opposed to a silly romantic comedy proved an attractive option to moviegoers.
The film’s strong opening proved the box office appeal of Bullock, who brought in $33.6 million with the opening of her most recent comedy, “The Proposal,”in 2009 and the $34.6 million opening weekend for McCarthy’s “Identity Thief,” which opened in February. Both films went on to earn over $130 million so “The Heat” should fare just as strongly.
3. World War Z – $29 million [2nd week; $140 million] Brad Pitt’s global zombie film had a 50% drop from its opening weekend, but there’s little doubt the film won’t recoup its budget at this point.
And with Paramount Pictures already green-lighting a sequel, more audience members may want to check it out to see what the fuss is about. Worldwide, the film has already grossed $150 million and looks to be a strong player on the global front thanks to its world-tour premise that plays better for a worldwide audience as opposed to a film that stays just in the United States.
4. White House Down – $25.7 million [debut week] – Call it White House disaster fatigue or audiences just not that excited about watching Channing Tatum and Jamie Foxx do what Gerard Butler and Aaron Eckhart already did this year in “Olympus Has Fallen.”
Given the unexpected popularity of the $98 million grossing “Olympus,” I didn’t get why “WHD” distributor Sony didn’t opt to delay “WHD” until next year. As Paramount Pictures proved with “G.I. Joe: Retaliation,” sometimes it’s better not to worry about saving face and simply just being flexible enough to push back a film’s release. “Retaliation” was scheduled to come out last June, but was delayed to March and went on to earn $122 domestically and $371 million worldwide. “WHD” will be lucky to reach $80 million, which has to be concerning for Sony as “WHD” cost $150 million compared to “Olympus'” $70 million budget.
5. Man of Steel – $20 million [3rd week; $253 million] In an only in Hollywood tale could a relaunch of the world’s most popular superhero make back its budget ($225 million), spark the potential start of a new DC Comics franchise (“Justice League” talks are more of a matter of “when,” not “if” anymore) and still be labeled a bit of a disappointment. Of all the summer blockbusters, “MOS” has been the film most impacted by heavy competition as it continues falling further down the Top 5 after kicking off the month with an all-time highest grossing take for June.
The film is now the second highest grossing film of the year as it just beat out “Oz the Great and Powerful,” but it can blame the solid competition for not allowing it to come closer to reaching “Iron Man 3’s” $404 million total. Reaching $300 million isn’t out of the question though and it’s now at $422 million worldwide and destined to reach $500 million before its box office run is finished.