Will Moana Conquer Its Second Weekend at the Box Office?
Disney's animated adventure Moana had no trouble taking down three fellow newcomers over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend at the box office, bringing in $56.3 million over the three-day weekend and $82 million over the five-day extended weekend. Starting this Friday, it will only have one newcomer to face, Blumhouse's horror-thriller Incarnate, which is expected to debut in less than half the theaters Moana is playing in. With that being said, Moana should have no trouble repeating atop the box office with a projected $27.3 million.
Box Office Mojo reports that Incarnate will open in approximately 1,500 theaters, a far cry from the 3,875 theaters that Moana opened in over the holiday weekend. The weekend after Thanksgiving is traditionally a weak one at the box office, with holdovers from earlier in the month almost always dominating over the meager competition doled out by the studios. In fact, since box office figures started being made official by the studios in 1982, there has only been three years year where a new release has triumphed at the box office.
The first time this box office oddity happened was in 1988, with the release of The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad!, which won with $9.3 million. In 1991, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country became the second new release to conquer this weekend with $18.1 million, with The Last Samurai becoming the last new release to do so in 2003, when it took the top spot with $24.2 million. That tradition doesn't look to change any time soon, with Disney's animated adventure looking to have no trouble retaining the top spot this weekend.
Moana is set the ancient South Pacific world of Oceania, where a born navigator, sets sail in search of a fabled island. During her incredible journey, she teams up with her hero, the legendary demi-god Maui, to traverse the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous sea creatures, breathtaking underworlds and ancient folklore. Dwayne Johnson leads the voice cast as Maui, with newcomer Auli'i Cravalho voicing the title character. The supporting voice cast is rounded out by Alan Tudyk as Heihei, Nicole Scherzinger as Sina and Jemaine Clement as Tamatoa.
Incarnate follows a scientist with the ability to enter the subconscious minds of the possessed who must save a young boy from the grips of a demon with powers never seen before, while facing the horrors of his past. The horror-thriller stars Aaron Eckhart, Carice Van Houten, Karolina Wydra, Matthew Nable, Keir O'Donnell, Catalina Sandido Moreno, David Mazouz and Emjay Anthony. We're projecting that it will barely crack the top 10, taking in $1.6 million in the 10th spot.
With only one new release this weekend, the top 10 will largely remain intact, with Moana repeating at the top with $27.3 million, followed by Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them with $23.2 million, Doctor Strange with $7.1 million, Allied with $6.8 million and Arrival rounding out the top 5 with $6.2 million. The top 10 will be rounded out by Trolls ($5.4 million), Almost Christmas ($3.9 million), Bad Santa 2 ($3 million), Hacksaw Ridge ($2.7 million) and Incarnate ($1.6 million). Despite the lack of newcomers in wide release, there are a number of limited release titles that could fare well in platform releases.
Fox Searchlight will roll out its potential awards season contender Jackie this weekend, along with Archstone's drama Anonymous, First Run's documentary Best and Most Beautiful Things, Magnolia's horror-thriller The Eyes of My Mother, GVN Releasing's drama A Girl Like Grace, Distrib Films' drama In Her Name and IFC's drama Things to Come. It isn't known if any of these films will be expanded nationwide in the weeks to come, but that will likely depend on how they fare in limited release this weekend.
Looking ahead to next weekend, Paramount's Office Christmas Party is the only movie opening in wide release, with a slew of limited release titles also arriving. Lionsgate will roll out its critically-acclaimed musical La La Land, starring Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, alongside Magnolia's documentary Harry Benson: Shoot First, Screen Media's thriller Sugar Mountain, Viva Pictures Distribution's romantic comedy The Bounce Back and Yash Raj's drama Bekfire. Take a look at the projected top 10 for the weekend of December 2, and check back on Sunday for the box office estimates.
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