Box Office: February 7-9

This weekend saw the debut of the Birds of Prey film which had a largely clear deck ahead of it as nothing else of note was really opening. The only competition of sorts is that some chains were showing a lot of the Best Picture nominees over the last week or two and that might draw some folks in otherwise. But, as you can see from the numbers, everything is essentially under $10 million and most are under the $5 million mark once you get past the top two.

Birds of Prey did take the top spot s expected but with a $33.25 million taken. Initial projects had it landing closer to the $50 million mark and the film is doing well with critical scores; it’s over 80% on RT and 60 on Metacritic. It’s got a “B+” CinemaScore and audiences on RT like it as well with it over 80%. What mainly seems to have happened is that with its R-rating, it’s keeping the kids out that could drive it home further.

The film was nearly split even in terms of men to women for the opening weekend but it was 65% over twenty-five. Younger audiences had a higher CinemaScore of “A-” compared to the averaged “B+” and with the style and approach that definitely makes a lot of sense (and anecdotally with my own viewing with a younger audience I took with me). The main contrast people will be painting this with is Deadpool in that they’re both R-rated films that opened in February, but there are a number of things that were stacked against Birds of Prey.

With its $84 million budget and supposedly upwards of $100 million in P&A, the $33 million debut is a dent in the road toward profitability. The film opened in 78 markets this weekend, going very wide, where it brought in another $48 million. So while it’s not a $100 million worldwide opening weekend, there’s some potential there if it can build on the positive word of mouth that exists from those that saw the film.

Bad Boys for Life kept the #2 slot easily with a 32% drop from the week prior to land at $12 million, or a $166 million domestic total so far. Its worldwide is up to $336 million so far.

Next weekend has Sonic the Hedgehog going wide for Paramount while Sony lines up Fantasy Island as some dating counterprogramming. Universal is going wide with The Photograph as its serious holiday offering while Fox Searchlight goes for the comedy angle with Downhill – which is in limited release.