Busting makes Melissa McCarthy, Paul Feig and the rest of the cast and crew behind Ghostbusters feel good.
The newly released reboot picked up an estimated $46 million in domestic ticket sales during its opening weekend, good enough for second place at the box office. It’s a good-not-great start for a movie said to be budgeted at more than $140 million, but that’s just from Sony’s perspective.
For Feig and McCarthy, it’s a momentous weekend. The two have collaborated on numerous comedies, including the modern cult classic Bridesmaids and underrated 2015 comedy Spy, but Ghostbusters beat them both.
Even as an estimate, the reboot’s $46 million take is enough to beat The Heat, the 2013 Fox comedy directed by Feig and starring McCarthy that opened at $39.1 million. The Heat also notably featured writing from Ghostbusters co-writer Katie Dippold.
It’s good-not-great for Sony because of the budget. Barring a surge in interest, Ghostbusters will probably finish its domestic run in theaters with somewhere south of $100 million in the bank. A strong performance overseas could help, but the potentially blocked release in China the second-largest movie market in the world could be a problem.
Ghostbusters finishes the weekend at #2 because there’s no competing with the runaway success of Universal’s The Secret Life of Pets. The animated, family-friendly feature opened last week with an unexpectedly large $104.4 million at the box office, and it follows up now with an estimated $50.6 million.
That’s a 52% drop over the first two weeks, which is a fine spot for any movie to be in. Pets isn’t earning enough internationally to threaten 2016’s top family-friendly earners so far Zootopia, The Jungle Book and Finding Dory, all from Disney but its $203.1 million cumulative is good enough to make it the seventh-highest domestic earner of the year to date.
Finding Dory is #1 on that list, with an estimated $11 million weekend bringing its cumulative domestic take up to $445.5 million. Dory was already 2016’s top earner domestically going into this weekend, but now it’s the top animated release of all time, passing Shrek 2‘s $436.7 million domestic take.
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