Box Office: Maze Runner Scorches Black Mass With $30 Million Weekend

Yes, yes, I know we failed to give you a report of last week’s box office, where The Perfect Guy (who – shocker – wasn’t so perfect) and M. Night Shyamalan’s first foray into found footage territory with The Visit battled it out for box office supremacy. Both films finished first and second, respectively, and when the actuals came in, The Perfect Guy narrowly edged out M. Night to take the weekend with a $25.8 million opening.

This weekend was a different story as both films drop to third and fourth place and switch spots as The Perfect Guy loses nearly 63% of its opening weekend audience to earn as estimated $9.6 million. The Visit only lost 55.4% of its audience, which is not bad for a horror movie, as they typically drop hard in the weeks following a sizable debut. In two weeks it has raked in $42.3 million off a budget of $5 million.

New in theaters we had the wide debuts of Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials and the Whitey Bulger gangster pic Black Mass starring Johnny Depp. So young adults versus adults. No surprise, but the young adults won as they flocked to see the big-screen continuation of the best-selling Maze Runner trilogy. With a $30.3 million opening, the sequel to last year’s The Maze Runner keep pace, as the original opened a little north of $32 million.

Johnny Depp
, who I contend is not a movie star despite the clout he garnered with the success of the Pirates of the Caribbean films as Captain Jack Sparrow, had his best opening that wasn’t a big-screen adaptation of a TV show since the 2011 animated release Rango. A $23.36 million opening is a few $100k less than the opening of Ben Affleck’s The Town in 2010, but $3.5 million less than Martin Scorsese’s Oscar-winning Boston-set gangster picture The Departed. With strong praise for Johnny Depp’s performance, look for Black Mass to have strong holds in the coming weeks (until the release of Ridley Scott’s The Martian on October 2nd).

Universal’s Everest debuted in the top five despite playing on only 845 screens. The mountain climbing adventure, based on Jon Krakauer’s Into Thin Air, his account of a 1996 Everest mountain-climbing trip in which he was apart of as part of a feature article for Nature magazine. The film had the best per-screen average of any movie in the top 10, averaging $13,872 at each theater. Not bad for a one-week IMAX 3D exclusive. Not one but two surcharges for audiences to help boost weekend earnings to $7.56 million.

The Christian-themed War Room adds another $6.25 million to bring its four-week total to $49 million, while Robert Redford’s A Walk in the Woods has collected $24.8 million in three weeks. And still showing that nothing is impossible, Tom Cruise and Rogue Nation has been part of the top 10 for eight consecutive weeks and has made $656 million worldwide. It just needs $40 million to surpass 2011’s Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol to become the most successful entry in the franchise.

The big story outside of the top 10 is the performance of Lionsgate’s Sicario in limited release. Playing at six locations, it made an impressive $390k. The film expands nationally this upcoming weekend.

Looking at what we have coming to theaters, it will be a battle pitting adults against kids against horror fiends. We have the new Nancy Meyers comedy The Intern starring Anne Hathaway and Robert De Niro; an animated Adam Sandler accepting guests in a sequel to Hotel Transylvania, and Eli Roth’s tribute to Cannibal Holocaust with The Green Inferno from distributor High Top Releasing. Three years ago, Hotel Transylvania opened to the tune of $42.5 million. I don’t expect similar numbers, but it should open atop the box office.

Top 10 below.

01. Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials – $30.3 Million
02. Black Mass – $23.36 Million
03. The Visit – $11.35 Million ($42.3 Million)
04. The Perfect Guy – $9.64 Million ($41.35 Million)
05. Everest – $7.56 Million
06. War Room – $6.25 Million ($49 Million)
07. A Walk in the Woods – $2.7 Million ($24.8 Million)
08. Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation – $2.25 Million ($191.7 Million)
09. Straight Outta Compton – $1.97 Million ($158.9 Million)
10. Captive – $1.4 Million

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