Movie houses have traditionally been a bit empty in the springtime. And really, it makes sense: The kids are still in school. The movie industry is still recovering from awards season. And it’s not quite summer blockbuster season yet. Movie execs figure that we’ve all got better things to do with our time in March and April than see movies … so they tend to release stuff that not very many people want to see.
But as Bob Dylan once said, the times, they are a-changin’. For the past few springs, the local multiplex hasn’t been such a quiet place. Even if it’s showing A Quiet Place.
John Krasinski’s PG-13 horror flick, in which he stars alongside wife Emily Blunt, made quite the racket at the box office even as it shushed all competition. According to early estimates, A Quiet Place scared up $50 million over the weekend in North America—and Box Office Mojo’s expecting those numbers to creep up a little once all the receipts are counted. Add the other $21 million the movie earned overseas, and A Quiet Place has been anything but.
Ready Player One, last week’s champ, sank to second without a noise, making half of what A Quiet Place did. Still, $25 million isn’t exactly sofa cushion change, and Steven Spielberg’s visual thrill-fest has now collected nearly $100 million domestically ($96.9 million, if you want to get technical) in about 11 days of work. That’s even more than my editor makes, and yet another sign that, in the movie industry, spring is the new summer.
Another newbie, the teen sex comedy Blockers, rambled up to third with $21.4 million, proving that raunchy, R-rated fare can still draw crowds. (At least crowds that don’t read Plugged In.)
Black Panther isn’t technically part of the springtime push, given that it was released way back in February. No matter: The latest superhero flick from Disney and Marvel came in like a lion and continues to show its teeth. It earned another $8.4 million this weekend in North America, pushing its total gross to a truly astounding $665.4 million. Oh, and it passed the sinking Titanic this weekend to become the third highest-grossing domestic movie ever. (It’s 10th all-time worldwide as well, with about $1.3 billion in grosses.)
It’ll be interesting to see whether Avengers: Infinity War—the superhero mash-up movie to end all superhero mash-up movies—will be able to dethrone Black Panther as the year’s highest-grossing movie after it’s released April 27. (Ironically, that film’s shot at the annual title may well be undercut by another Disney film releasing a few weeks later, Solo: A Star Wars Story.) But one thing’s for sure: It’s shaping up to be a Marvel-ous movie season at the box office.
Speaking of cinematic marvels, I Can Only Imagine is still in the top five, banking yet another $8.4 million. It has now earned a stellar $69.1 million against its miniscule $7 million budget, which makes it the third highest-grossing Christian film ever (if you don’t count those Chronicles of Narnia movies).
Two other newcomers we should mention: The docudrama Chappaquiddick finished seventh with $6.2 million, while the inspirational (and ever-so-slightly Christian-tinged) The Miracle Season coasted to 11th with $4.1 million. Match point.