In the immortal words of Lloyd Christmas: I was way off! I’m speaking of the marvelous performance of Marvel’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, which smashed the Labor Day weekend all-time record. We’ll get to that in a second. The major release this weekend is James Wan’s latest horror offering Malignant. My detailed prediction post on it can be found here:
There’s arguably been an over saturation in the market lately for scary pics. Malignant doesn’t seem to have much heat, but I have to give the reminder that this genre often over performs. I’ll still go with under $10 million and that would be good for second place.
Back to Shang-Chi. The acclaimed 25th MCU entry claimed the second highest COVID era debut (barely behind the other Marvel premiere from 2021 – Black Widow). Scarlett Johansson’s stand-alone title fell a steep 68% in its sophomore frame. I don’t foresee that occurring with Shang-Chi. With an A Cinemascore grade and it not being available on Disney Plus, a mid 50s dip seems more likely as it could foreseeably be #1 for the entire month of September.
Here’s how I see the top 5 shaking out:
1. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
Predicted Gross: $36.4 million
Predicted Gross: $7.6 million
3. Free Guy
Predicted Gross: $5.5 million
Predicted Gross: $5.1 million
5. Jungle Cruise
Predicted Gross: $2.4 million
Box Office Results (September 3-6)
Mark it down as one of my incorrect forecasts ever. I thought the challenges facing Shang-Chi (COVID and the fact that big movies don’t really come out at this time of year) meant a $58.9 million four-day gross. Whoops. Try $94.6 million! Its $75 million traditional three-day take, as mentioned, is just after the $80 million that Widow made. Simply put, this is another testament that theatrical only can still be a moneymaking venture and that’s music to industry ears. To put it in perspective, the previous Labor Day record was 2007’s Halloween at $30 million. Rings tripled that and then some.
On the flip side, I was a little too generous to the holdovers. Candyman earned $12.5 million in its sophomore frame (a bit under my $13.4 million projection). The horror sequel/reboot, after its better than expected start, is up to $41 million.
Free Guy was third with $11.2 million (I said $14.2 million) and it’s made $94 million as it hurls towards the century mark.
PAW Patrol: The Movie sat in the four spot with $5.3 million compared to my $6.7 million prediction. Tally is $31 million.
Rounding out the top five was Jungle Cruise with $5.1 million. Once again, I went with more at $6.9 million. It has sailed off with $106 million.
And that does it for now, folks! Until next time…