Venom Gobbles Up Second Win


It was a crowded weekend at the box office. Four newcomers rolled relatively wide this weekend, and several other films debuted in limited release. But no matter: The weekend was one for the old-timers.

Not too old, mind you. Both top earners still have vestiges of that new-movie smell. Still, in the economics of modern moviemaking where the youngsters almost always make hay, these two semi-geriatric offerings made for a formidable one-two punch.

Venom chewed up the top slot again, clawing its way to an estimated $35.7 million in the United States and Canada over the weekend to bring its overall haul to $142.8 million. And Venom’s symbiotic relationship with movie fans doesn’t stop at the border, either. The fang-laden antihero has collected $235.3 million in international markets, which pushes its overall gross to $378.1 million. Despite the withering early reviews, Venom sports some serious teeth.

A Star Is Born wasn’t born yesterday, either. Now a seasoned, grizzled veteran of the box-office tourney, Bradley Cooper’s awards-season vehicle scored its second-straight silver medal, earning $28 million. It’s just a wee bit shy of $100 million overall (Star’s overall domestic gross weighs in at $94.2 million right now), but it should hit that milestone before we meet again next week. After all, audiences are still going gaga for the thing.

The same cannot be said for First Man, another awards hopeful. The freshman flick fired up its rockets but had trouble gaining altitude. It earned just $16.5 million, a little shy of the orbit most prognosticators expected. Still, First Man has its sights locked on the long game, and it may yet shoot to the moon.

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween sent only small shivers through the box office, earning an estimated $16.2 million to finish fourth. It pushed another kid-focused flick, Smallfoot, down to fifth with $9.3 million.

Bad Times at the El Royale, the weekend’s third wide release, had a bad time at the multiplex, landing with a thud in seventh. It earned just $7.2 million despite its quirky all-star cast.

The unwieldly named Gosnell: The Trial of America’s Biggest Serial Killer opened in just 673 theaters  this weekend, well off the pace set by the weekend’s other newcomers. (First Man, for instance, was in nearly 3,000 more.) But this dramatic story of a Philadelphia abortion doctor’s trial for murder still managed to muster a top-12 finish with $1.2 million, anyway.

Elsewhere, Beautiful Boy began its own awards campaign in just four theaters, but it collected more than $55,000 in each one—the biggest per-screen gross of the weekend—to give it a $221,437 payday. A beautiful beginning, perhaps, but time will tell.

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 22 days ago
I'm a huge Pooh fan, loved the Disney series from the 80s, and have pretty much loved all animated Pooh films as well. I just hated the way my beloved characters looked in Christopher Robin so much that I simply could not stand the movie in the least. They needed to be CGI rendered instead I think. Then I would have enjoyed the film immensely.
Anonymous 3 months ago
Posted by First Comment Guy

Not really anything worth seeing in theaters till December hits (when Spider-Man: Into the Spider Verse and Aquaman come out), so I guess I’ll just have to have patience and wait until then.
Anonymous 3 months ago
I'm really looking forward to November this year since that's when Bohemian Rhapsody and the new Fantastic Beasts movie comes out. Though December with the new Clint Eastwood film The Mule and Mary Poppins Returns seems pretty good too.
Anonymous 3 months ago
Critics skewered Venom - but audiences adored it. Critics loved First Man - but audiences didn’t care. Maybe it is time to stop putting so much stock into what the critics think.
Anonymous 3 months ago
After all, the Ghostbusters reboot everyone hated is certified fresh on Rotten Tomatoes just because the critics wanted to 'Stick it to the man (Literally)" to show them sexist geeks who's boss!

Although we probably shouldn't put too much stock in the audience consensus, either. (After all, they though that the Transformers movies and that awful Peter Rabbit film were good enough to be box office successes...)

Anonymous 3 months ago
I really enjoyed the Ghostbusters reboot "that everyone hated." I'm not one who tends to listen to the opinions of the masses in general. 
Anonymous 3 months ago
Posted by First Comment Guy

To be fair though, Evan, audiences did finally wise up and voted no with their wallets on the 5th Transformers movie. So while it took audiences longer that it probably should have to stop paying good money to Michael Bay, they did eventually learn.
Anonymous 3 months ago

Peter Rabbit was cute, charming, funny as heck, and had animation lifted straight from the storyboards. It was a wonderful little movie and I'm glad it did so well. Christopher Robin on the other hand truly was awful and is a real head-scratcher as to why that particular film did so well.

And by the way, I'm not sure why I have bad taste simply because I loved movies like Paddington and Peter Rabbit this year, but couldn't stand the ugly looking washed out faded colors of my beloved Pooh friends in Christopher Robin.

Anonymous 29 days ago
There’s no accounting for taste because I simply cannot understand how someone can love Peter Rabbit and sneer at Christopher Robin.