Meg Paddles to First Place

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The prehistoric monster that stars in The Meg (the shark, not Jason Statham) would never be mistaken for something you’d throw in a tiny aquarium with a plastic treasure chest. Still, for its makers at Warner Bros., the megalodon is proving to be one gold fish.

The Meg came out this weekend fins-a-flying and ready for a fight with top dog Mission: Impossible – Fallout. Instead, the weekend proved to be a swim in the park: It earned $44.5 million in North America, according to the studio’s early estimates—more than twice what Fallout earned. No flounder in this film.

But let’s not mourn too much for Tom Cruise’s latest adrenaline-laden actioner. The two-time box-office champ may have slipped to second with a $20 million weekend, but it has still collected $162 million during its run thus far (not to mention the $275.6 million it’s made overseas). In 17 days, Fallout—the sixth film in Cruise’s M:I franchise—has already sprinted past M:I III in domestic gross. Next up, it has the $181 million, 1996 original fixed in its sniper scope. Perhaps, like the shark in The Meg, Cruise gets more fearsome with age.

Christopher Robin skipped into third place with $12.4 million, bringing its own domestic total to about $50 million and pushing a couple of newcomers further down the standings.

Slender Man, despite generating a legion of scathing reviews (including one from yours truly), outperformed its modest expectations and scared up $11.3 million. That may not sound like much in this age of blockbusters, but horror movies are notoriously inexpensive to make. And given that the titular star doesn’t even have a mouth, I assume the studio saved some on catering costs, too.

Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman closed out the top five with a $10.8 million opening weekend. That’s the director’s biggest opening since Inside Man banked $29 million back in 2006.

Three of the weekend’s four major new releases did pretty well for themselves. The fourth … well, let’s just say that consumers looked at Dog Days and thwapped it in the nose with a rolled-up newspaper. The ensemble romantic comedy fell to 12th place with a woof, digging up just $2.6 million. While that might sound like a lot for you and me, it’s not mutt—er, much, in the movie industry, even for a dog movie. Have you seen the price of kibble these days?

Who wrote this?

Paul Asay has been writing for Plugged In since 2007 and loves superheroes and finding God in unexpected places. In addition, Paul has also written several books, with his newest—Burning Bush 2.0—recently published by Abingdon Press. When Paul’s not reviewing movies, he hikes with his wife, Wendy, runs marathons with his grown kids, Colin and Emily, and beats back unruly houseplants. Follow him on Twitter @AsayPaul.

Have something to say? Leave a comment.

Anonymous 8 months ago
I think everyone should go see Dog Days right now. It's cute, funny, extremely charming, and shows how dogs can get people together. Plus it has Vanessa Hudgens in it in her best role since High School Musical. It's not nearly as bad sounding as Plugged In makes it out to be, nor is it as crass or explicit either.
Anonymous 8 months ago
They almost make it seem like American Pie or Porky's which it certainly is not.
Anonymous 8 months ago
Shoot. Jason Statham and Tom Cruise are two of my least favorite actors. But then again, I loved Jaws, so i am actually kinda excited about seeing The Meg, I just hoping Statham doesn't ruin it. Really couldn't care less about M.I. Just not my style.
-Davidiswise The Clown