February 25, 2018 / 4:35 PM / 5 months ago

Box Office: 'Black Panther' rules with $108 million in second weekend

LOS ANGELES, (Variety.com) - Disney-Marvel’s “Black Panther” is dominating the box office with an astounding $108 million at 4,020 North American locations — the second-highest second weekend ever behind “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”

A group of men gather in front of a poster advertising "Black Panther" on its opening night of screenings at the AMC Magic Johnson Harlem 9 cinemas in Manhattan, New York. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

“Black Panther,” starring Chadwick Boseman, has now grossed $400 million domestically in its first 10 days. Only “The Force Awakens” has reached that milestone faster. It’s also grossed $304 million internationally.

The superhero film, the 18th in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, declined only 46 percent from its opening Friday-Sunday — underlining the film’s massive appeal among moviegoers. “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” set the second weekend record with $149 million in 2015, and “Black Panther” topped the second weekends of 2015’s “Jurassic World” at $106.6 million, and 2012’s “The Avengers” with $103 million.

“Black Panther,” directed by Ryan Coogler, has caught on with moviegoers this month in a way that few other titles have in Hollywood’s recent history — blowing past last month’s tracking that showed it would open in the $100 million to $120 million range. It’s notched an A+ Cinemascore — becoming only the second Marvel film to do so — and has dazzled critics with a 97 percent “fresh” score on Rotten Tomatoes. The film also stars Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Martin Freeman, Daniel Kaluuya and Letitia Wright.

ComScore’s PostTrack scores of the audience for the second weekend show support among moviegoers far above average with 69 percent rating the film as “excellent” and another 23 percent as “very good.” And it’s done so outside the traditional summer and holiday season corridors for blockbusters, noted Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst with comScore.

“‘Black Panther’ continues to elevate the month of February to summer-style blockbuster status with a second weekend that represents only the third time that a film has posted a $100 million plus weekend performance during the month (behind only its $202 million debut and ‘Deadpool’s’ $132 million opening in 2016),” he said. “And with a North American cume through Sunday of $400 million, it is the highest grossing film ever released in the month after just 10 days in theaters beating the long-standing $370.3 million record held by 2004’s ‘The Passion of The Christ.’”

Demographics of the second-weekend audience were 33 percent African-American, 37 percent Caucasian, 18 percent Hispanic, 7 percent Asian and 5 percent others. The opening weekend was 37 percent African-American, 35 percent Caucasian, 18 percent Hispanic, 5 percent Asian and 5 percent other.

Thanks to “Black Panther” and Sony’s “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle,” 2018 domestic box office has increased by an eye-popping 12.5 percent to $1.91 billion as of Sunday, according to comScore.

Warner Bros.-New Line’s opening of R-rated “Game Night,” starring Jason Bateman and Rachel McAdams, finished a distant second with $16.6 million from 3,488 locations. The film is directed by John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein, and follows Bateman and McAdams as couple whose regular game night suddenly turns into a murder mystery. Critics have given “Game Night” strong support, helping draw an 82 percent “fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Sony’s third weekend of “Peter Rabbit” hopped into third place with $12.5 million at 3,707 sites, giving the family comedy $71.3 million after 17 days. That was enough to edge Paramount’s sci-fi thriller “Annihilation” with a respectable $11 million at 2,102 venues, in line with forecasts.

Universal’s third weekend of “Fifty Shades Freed” followed in fifth with $6.9 million at 3,265 locations as the erotic romancer slid 60 percent. The finale of the trilogy has topped $89 million in 17 days.

Sony’s 10th weekend of its comedy hit “Jumanji” took sixth place with $5.7 million at 2,519 venues, declining only 29 percent and lifting the 68-day total to $387.3 million.

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