Split Scares Up $40.2M to Win the Weekend Box Office
This year has gotten off to a booming box office start, with the drama Hidden Figures surprisingly snapping Rogue One's four weekend winning streak early in the month. After Hidden Figures took two in a row, it dropped in its third, with Universal's R-rated thriller Split taking the top spot with an unexpected $40.1 million, going up against XXX 3, The Resurrection of Gavin Stone and The Founder, which expanded nationwide after an awards-qualifying run in December. It was always going to be a close race between Split and Paramount's XXX: Return of Xander Cage, but Split shockingly doubled XXX 3's estimated opening weekend tally of $20 million.
Box Office Mojo reports that Split pulled in an impressive $13,229 per-screen average from 3,038 screens. It also earned an impressive 75% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and its $40 million debut means it has already earned eight times more than its reported $5 million budget. Split is director M. Night Shyamalan's second movie teaming up with producer Jason Blum, following the 2015 thriller The Visit. Paramount's XXX 3 debuted in roughly 600 more theaters (3,651) but it only took in about half of what Split opened with, earning $20 million, which falls just between the debuts of the first two movies.
The first XXX movie debuted in 2002, just after the success of Vin Diesel's first Fast & Furious movie in 2001, earning an impressive $44.5 million opening weekend en route to $142.1 million domestic and $277.4 million worldwide, from a $70 million budget. The sequel, which featured Ice Cube replacing Vin Diesel's Xander Cage as a new secret agent named Darius Stone, didn't fare so well, opening in 2005 with $12.7 million, en route to $26.8 million domestic and $71 million worldwide, from an unspecified budget. No budget figures have been released for XXX: The Return of Xander Cage, but it was not a critical hit, with just 42% on Rotten Tomatoes. The top 5 will be rounded out by Hidden Figures ($16.2 million), Sing ($9 million) and La La Land ($8.3 million). The Founder opened in ninth place with $3.75 million, opening in 1,115 for a paltry $3,370 per-screen average. As expected, The Resurrection of Gavin Stone opened outside of the top 10, debuting in 18th place with $1.3 million, earning a horrid $1,530 per-screen average from 887 theaters.
The third explosive chapter of the blockbuster xXx franchise that redefined the spy thriller finds extreme athlete turned government operative Xander Cage (Vin Diesel) coming out of self-imposed exile and on a collision course with deadly alpha warrior Xiang and his team in a race to recover a sinister and seemingly unstoppable weapon known as Pandora's Box. Recruiting an all-new group of thrill-seeking cohorts, Xander finds himself enmeshed in a deadly conspiracy that points to collusion at the highest levels of world governments. Packed with the series' signature deadpan wit and bad-ass attitude, XXX: The Return of Xander Cage raises the bar on extreme action with some of the most mind-blowing stunts to ever be caught on film.
In Split, though Kevin has evidenced 23 personalities to his trusted psychiatrist, Dr. Fletcher, there remains one still submerged who is set to materialize and dominate all the others. Compelled to abduct three teenage girls led by the willful, observant Casey, Kevin reaches a war for survival among all of those contained within him-as well as everyone around him-as the walls between his compartments shatter apart. James McAvoy stars as the 23 separate personalities of Kevin, with Anya Taylor Joy, Hayley Lu Richardson and Jessica Sula starring as the three abducted girls and Betty Buckley as Dr. Fletcher. M. Night Shyamalan directs from his own script, with Jason Blum producing. The movie is already an early hit with critics with an impressive 80% RT score.
The Founder, directed by John Lee Hancock (The Blind Side, Saving Mr. Banks), features the true story of how Ray Kroc (Michael Keaton), a struggling salesman from Illinois, met Mac and Dick McDonald, who were running a burger operation in 1950s Southern California. Kroc was impressed by the brothers' speedy system of making the food and saw franchise potential. Writer Robert Siegel (The Wrestler) details how Kroc maneuvered himself into a position to be able to pull the company from the brothers and create a billion-dollar empire. The film also stars Laura Dern as Ray Kroc's first wife Ethel; Linda Cardellini as his second wife Joan Smith; John Carroll Lynch as Mac McDonald and Nick Offerman as Dick McDonald.
The Resurrection of Gavin Stone follows the title character (Brett Dalton), a washed-up former child star, is forced to do community service at a local megachurch and pretends to be Christian so he can land the part of Jesus in their annual Passion Play, only to discover that the most important role of his life is far from Hollywood. The supporting cast includes Emily Eruraviel, Neil Flynn, Anjelah Johnson-Reyes, Christopher Maleki, Matthew Talford, Shawn Michaels and D.B. Sweeney.
The top 10 will be rounded out by Rogue One: A Star Wars Story ($7.03 million), Monster Trucks ($7 million), Patriots Day ($6 million), The Founder ($3.75 million) and Sleepless ($3.7 million). Also opening in limited release is Sony Pictures Classics' The Red Turtle, which earned $21,811 from three theaters for $7,270 per-screen average. No box office data was released for Magnolia's Detour, Rialto's Panique, Strand's Staying Vertical and FilmRise's The Sunshine Makers. It isn't clear if any of these movies in limited release will be expanding in the weeks to come.
Looking ahead to the final weekend of January, three new movies will debut in wide release. Sony Pictures will close out their Resident Evil franchise with Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, starring Milla Jovovich, alongside Universal's dramatic comedy A Dog's Purpose starring Dennis Quaid and The Weinstein Company's drama Gold starring Matthew McConaughey. Also opening in limited release is Orion Pictures' Get the Girl, China Lion's Buddies in India, Indican's Massacre on Aisle 12, Cohen Media Group's The Salesman and Pantelion's Un Padre No Tan Padre. Take a look at the top 10 box office estimates for the weekend of January 20.
|2||XXX: The Return of Xander Cage|
|5||La La Land|
|6||Rogue One: A Star Wars Story|