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.