Box office: ‘Scream VI’ wins over Oscar weekend with ‘Creed III’ in second place

The box office saw another strong weekend, though this also being Oscar weekend and this being written on Sunday morning, we’re probably going to see a few minor adjustments on Monday when actual box office is reported.

Regardless, the Paramount and Spyglass Media Group sequel, “Scream VI,” became the second franchise sequel in a row to exceed the opening of all previous installments. It came into the weekend with solid reviews of 75% on Rotten Tomatoes, and it brought in more than $5.7 million just in Thursday previews. It won Friday with ease with an estimated $19.3 million, and that added up to an estimated $44.5 million for its opening weekend. That is indeed the best opening for the franchise, the previous record being 2000’s “Scream 3,” which opened with $34.7 million.

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Bringing back Jenna Ortega (last night’s “Saturday Night Live” host), Melissa Barrera, Courteney Cox, and other characters from last year’s “requel,” “Scream VI” received 93% audience approval on Rotten Tomatoes, and it received a “B+” CinemaScore, the same score for last year’s “Scream,” which opened with $30 million and ended up grossing $81.6 million domestically. “Scream VI” made another $22.6 million in 53 international markets for a global opening of $67.1 million.

Michael B. Jordan‘s boxing drama, “Creed III” dropped to second place with $27.1 million, down 54% from its opening weekend, but it also crossed the $100 million mark in ten days with a total domestic take of $101.4 million so far. Even though, the movie, co-starring Jonathan Majors, looks like it will achieve a franchise high at the box office, we’ll have to see how it holds up against other upcoming high-profile releases.

Adam Driver starred in Sony’s sci-fi thriller, “65,” from Scott Beck and Bryan Adams, the writers of “A Quiet Place.” The movie opened with an estimated $12.3 million for third place after making just $1.3 million in Thursday previews. “65” wasn’t received quite as well by film critics, many of whom didn’t have a chance to see it before Thursday, adding up to a 36% on Rotten Tomatoes. Although it did significantly better (64% positive) from audiences, it also received a C+ CinemaScore, which does not point to long-term legs. “65” made $7.2 million overseas, with the UK and Mexico being top markets with $1.5 million and $1.1 million, respectively.

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Marvel’s “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” dropped to fourth place with $7 million, a smaller drop of 45%, as it ended its fourth weekend with just under $200 million at $198 million so far. That’s more than the previous two “Ant-Man” movies grossed, but a mere drop in the bucket compared to Marvel’s last few movies. It has grossed just under $250 million overseas, for a global total of $447.6 million.

Universal’s horror-comedy hit “Cocaine Bear” crossed the $50 million mark with $6.2 million this weekend (down 44%) to take fifth place with $51.7 million grossed domestically.

Bobby Farrelly‘s sports comedy, “Champions,” starring Woody Harrelson, was released by Focus Features into 3,028 theaters, coming into the weekend with mixed reviews. It ended up grossing on the lower end of tracking with $5.2 million to open in sixth place. Its “A” CinemaScore showed that audiences enjoyed it more than the critics, so it should continue to do well as counter-programming.

Lionsgate’s faith-based drama, “Jesus Revolution,” also continues to do well with another $5.2 million this weekend (down 39%) with a domestic total of $39.5 million.

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“Avatar: The Way of Water” just BARELY passed Cameron’s earlier blockbuster, “Titanic” this weekend after it grossed another $2.7 million in 1,675 theaters. So far, it has grossed $674.7 million, which is less than a million more than “Titanic’s” lifetime gross of $674.2 (which includes money made from numerous re-releases since its initial 1997 release).

As has become the norm, Crunchyroll’s “Demon Slayer: To the Swordsmith Village” had a massive second weekend drop of 81% to roughly $1.9 million to take ninth place.

Guy Ritchie‘s “Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre” dropped right out of the top 10 with $1.3 million, down 59% from its opening weekend. It has grossed $5.6 million, so far.

The top five placements were correctly predicted by the majority of players in Gold Derby’s box office prediction game, so expect a lot of 6 out of 6 results. No one got a perfect score in the March 3 game, although a good number of players went 5 out of 6, and “DanC” scored the most points with 28,107 with Super Bets on “Demon Slayer” and “Jesus Revolution” to take fourth and fifth places.

Next weekend, Warner Bros. returns to the comic book fray with the sequel, “Shazam! Fury of the Gods,” so check on Wednesday for a preview of next weekend.

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