It took Joe Cornish eight years to follow up his fantastic, cult sensation Attack the Block (starring future Star Wars lead John Boyega), but the kid-oriented The Kid Who Would Be King didn’t make much of a dent in the box office this weekend. Opening in over 3500 theaters, the film only managed a lackluster $7.2 million on a $59 million budget, good enough only for third place. The poor showing belied the reviews, however. Critics enjoyed it, giving it an 86 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, and audiences liked, too, giving it a solid B+ Cinemascore. Its failure, I suspect, is owed largely to the fact that it had little star power (a cast of largely unknown kids plus Rebecca Ferguson) and the fact that the trailers for the film looked very bad. I was willing to give it a shot based on director Joe Cornish, but he’s not exactly a household name to most, and there was otherwise little in the trailers to spark much interest. In either respect, hopefully word of mouth will keep it around for a few weeks, or at least generate some excitement when it receives a digital release.
Despite its total lack of star power, The Kid Who Would Be King did fare considerably better than Serenity, the oft-delayed Steven Knight film starring A-listers Anne Hathaway and Matthew McConaughey. It earned a lousy $4.4 million and entered the weekend box office in eighth place. Both reviews and word-of-mouth killed Serenity, which earned a poor 21 percent on Rotten Tomatoes and a miserable D+ from Cinemascore. For what it’s worth, while most moviegoers have loathed the film, there does seem to be a smaller percentage who absolutely adore it and the insane ending to the film, which Anne Hathaway has tried to defend.
The top spot this weekend went to M. Night Shyamalan’s Glass, which dropped a modest 53 percent to $19 million and $73 million overall. This is obviously not the blow-out hit that the studio was hoping for, but remember, Glass was made for only $20 million. It may be a disappointment to the studio and to many moviegoers, but it is a profitable disappointment. In at number two, The Upside is the first sleeper hit of the year. With $12.2 million, it has quietly earned $63 million after three weeks on a $37 million budget. It’s obviously not going to achieve the success of the original French film upon which it was based, The Intouchables, which earned over $400 million worldwide, but it is definitely another hit for Kevin Hart. In fact, with little new competition arriving next weekend, and given the trajectory of Glass, The Upside may even be able to squeak into the top spot in its fourth week.
More holdovers occupied the rest of the top ten. Aquaman, in its sixth week, earned another $7 million to bring its overall domestic total to $316 million. That’s impressive, but what’s even more impressive is its worldwide total, which stands at $1.076 billion, making it the 25th highest grossing film of all time worldwide. Spider-Man:Into the Spider-Verse also quietly continues to perform well, earning another $5.5 million in its seventh week. It has now earned $168 million in the States and over $330 million worldwide (on a $90 million budget).
In at number six, Green Book got a big Oscar boost, growing over 150 percent since last week, adding $5.4 million to bring its total to $49 million. It’s the only Best Picture nominee still in the top ten, although The Favourite also received a big Oscar boost, growing 214 percent to $2.5 million this weekend. A Dog’s Way Home, meanwhile, is in no one’s Oscar conversation, but it’s now earned a modest $30 million after scoring $4.6 million this weekend.
With $3.6 million, Escape Room has now earned $47 million on a $9 million budget, while last week’s surprise hit, Dragon Ball Super: Broly dropped to number ten. It’s earned $28 million after adding another $3.4 million. That’s pretty good for a film that only cost $8.5 million to make. Meanwhile, Stan and Ollie increased its theater count to 725, but it was all for naught, as it didn’t even break into the top 20.
Next weekend looks to be another slow one at the box office, as there is only one new wide release, Miss Bala, starring Gina Rodriguez, and it’s opening in only 2000 theaters.