Sonic Rings Up Another Win


This weekend’s box-office tourney featured a showdown between PG-rated films, pitting defending champ Sonic the Hedgehog against new contender Call of the Wild. And if we were in the world of the old Highlander series of movies, someone would start chanting right now that “there can be only one!”

But when the CGI dust settled, three winners emerged: Sonic, Buck (the dog in Call) and families.

OK, so technically, the Sonic movie raced to the victory. The little blue hedgehog spun to an estimated $26.3 million in green, pushing its high score to $106.6 million.  That makes Sonic the fourth highest-grossing cinematic videogame-adaptation ever, and Box Office Pro tells us that it should pass No. 1 Detective Pikachu ($144.1 million) before its run is through.

But weep no bitter tears for Call of the Wild. Starring a 77-year-old Harrison Ford and a much-maligned CGI pooch, Call flew past most prognosticators’ estimates and earned $24.8 million in North America, paddling straight into a solid second place. Clearly, it was a good weekend for dogs and ‘hogs. (Hedgehogs, that is.)

Hollywood should perhaps take note that the weekend’s top films were both rated PG. And if you combine their estimated earnings, those two films out-earned the combined monetary might of the 46 other films in theaters.

Indeed, while the battle for No. 1 was pretty tight, we see a huge drop-off from those top two contenders to No. 3 Birds of Prey. The R-rated supervillain/hero movie earned just $7 million in its third weekend of business, boosting it total tally to $72.5 million. Harley Quinn’s taking it on the chin.

Meanwhile, the freshman fright flick Brahms: The Boy II could only scare up $5.9 million. That puts it in nearly a dead heat with Bad Boys for Life for fourth place. (Early estimates have Bad Boys sliding home with a $5,860,000 weekend, which would land it in fifth place if everything holds up.)

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.

Edna Konrad 3 months ago
Good for Sonic. I know some people take issue with the studio changing the design, but when you make a movie for a certain fan base it only makes sense to actually listen to the fans! Birds of Prey alienated its fan base by going R rated. Sonic won over its fans by recognizing their value.
Anonymous 3 months ago
Posted by First Comment Guy

Birds of Prey did not fail because of its R rating; the success of Deadpool, Logan, Joker and even the new Harley Quinn animated series are proof that R rated content sells in the comic book industry. 

Birds of Prey failed because it's a complete disgrace to the comics. It was Oracle, not Harley Quinn, who found the team. Taking away Barbara Gordon's biggest achievement after The Killing Joke completely undermines Barbara's impact on the DC Universe. Harley getting all the attention in the trailers (instead of Black Canary and Huntress) also turned me off as a DC fan. If I want a BoP film, I'm going to watch Batgirl, Black Canary and Huntress team up and stop crime, not Harley Quinn struggling with her life post-Joker.

That's why BoP is failing, because it turned off the fans and gave them something we didn't want to see.

But yes, Sonic deserves all the love it's getting and more; it's going to go bananas when it's released in Japan.
Edna Konrad 3 months ago
With the R rating thing I meant that on a mainstream level Harley seems designed to appeal to hormonal teen boys and edgy teen girls. 

Now for serious comic fans I realize she appeals to adults as well, I'm just saying that for people who don't know her story her current design is a little...juvenile. Hence why an R rating is a bad idea. It keeps those kids out of the theater.

You are absolutely correct that alienating the existing fan base hurt it even more though.
Anonymous 3 months ago
 @Edna Konrad 
Her costume in the film was pretty awful; why can't she just wear the jester costume from Batman: The Animated Series?

But hey, at least her new costume in The Suicide Squad looks 10x better than in BoP.
Anonymous 3 months ago
I saw Abominable this weekend and frankly thought it was alright, but nothing too special either. It was like a remake of Big Hero 6 replacing a yeti with Baymax, but wasn't nearly as good as that wonderful movie is. It didn't really start getting good till about 2/3rds of the way into it, but it wasn't bad for what it was. Funny and cute in places, even sweet at the end, and it did have Parker from Liv and Maddie and Fred from Coop & Cami in it, but all in all it just wasn't as wonderful to see as other animated films from last year were, namely Secret Life of Pets 2 and The Hidden World. Abominable gets maybe a C from me and that's being generous.