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DC League Of Super-Pets Tops The Box Office, But Its Opening Weekend Numbers Aren't Great

Krypto freezes Ace into place in DC League of Super-Pets.
(Image credit: Warner Bros./DC Comics)

Later this year, Warner Bros. is very much hoping the popular DC brand will put a lot of butts in a lot of seats. The studio is releasing two big live-action tent poles in the final quarter of 2022, with Jaume Collet-Serra's Black Adam arriving in October, and David F. Sandberg's Shazam! Fury Of The Gods on track for December. There are some big expectations for those blockbusters – if not especially because the franchise's first big screen release of the year, as Jared Stern and Sam Levine's DC League Of Super-Pets is not off to a great start at the box office.

Check out the full Top 10 for this past weekend in the chart below, and then join me after for analysis!

DC League Of Super-Pets Weekend Box Office CinemaBlend July 29-31, 2022

(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

TITLEWEEKEND GROSSDOMESTIC GROSSLWTHTRS
1. DC League Of Super Pets$23,000,000 $23,000,000 4,314
2. Nope$18,550,000 $80,583,425 13,807
3. Thor: Love And Thunder$13,075,000 $301,522,269 23,650
4. Minions: The Rise Of Gru$10,880,000 $320,410,625 33,579
5. Top Gun: Maverick$8,200,300 $650,104,000 53,008
6. Where The Crawdads Sing$7,525,000 $53,526,201 43,526
7. Elvis$5,830,000 $129,000,707 62,901
8. The Black Phone$2,500,000 $83,119,245 81,638
9. Jurassic World: Dominion$2,080,000 $369,492,845 91,747
10. Vengeance$1,750,000 $1,750,000 998

DC League Of Super-Pets Only Barely Squeezes Into The Top 20 Opening Weekends Of 2022

With the release of DC League Of Super-Pets, there was clearly a hope that a star-studded voice cast featuring Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Kate McKinnon, John Krasinski, and Keanu Reeves would get a lot of attention, but it didn't even manage to make half of the opening weekend sum of Angus MacLane's Lightyear, which made over $50 million in early in early June and was quickly labeled a disappointment. 

Despite the branding of DC and the presence of notable characters like Superman and Batman, the movie couldn't even outpace the other big animal-centric animated feature of 2022: Pierre Perifel's The Bad Guys. That film had a $24 million start when Dreamworks released it in April, and while it is based on a popular book series, obviously the brand isn't on the same level as the comic book giant. 

According to Variety, DC League Of Super-Pets had a production budget of $90 million (not counting marketing and publicity costs), so it still has a lot of financial ground to cover before it can be declared a profitable and successful release. The good news for the production is that it is arguably the last big family-centric feature that is hitting theaters between now and the fall when kids go back to school, and it may continue to sell tickets to parents looking for activities for their children during summer vacation. 

What's tough about depending on that audience is the fact that Kyle Balda's Minions: The Rise Of Gru is still around and continuing to prove to be exceptionally popular (it's now ranked as the fifth biggest cinematic release of 2022 internationally, having made $710.4 million globally to date (via The Numbers).

Kate McKinnon's character in DC League of Super Pets.

(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

On the subject of Illumination Entertainment, one can imagine that Warner Bros.' model for success with DC League Of Super-Pets was based on the money made by Chris Renaud's The Secret Life Of Pets back in 2016 (also starring Kevin Hart), and the new film sadly came nowhere near hitting that bar. That kid-friendly release made an impressive eight figures in its first three days – and while its sequel, The Secret Life Of Pets 2, made less than half of that when it came out in 2019, its $46.7 million total was still double what DC League Of Super-Pets made this weekend.

It will be interesting to ultimately see what the movie's performance means for the future of theatrically released animated films based on DC properties. The franchise has had immense success for decades when it comes to features made for the direct-to-video market... but it was also only four years ago that Teen Titans Go! To The Movies hit the big screen and made a whopping $51.6 million worldwide. It sadly wouldn't be too surprising to see Warner Bros. react to this development by making all animated DC films home video exclusives going forward, though, at the same time, it seems like everything related to DC in the movie realm is in flux at the moment, so it's hard to make any firm predictions about the future.

Nope Takes A Second Weekend Box Office Dip, But Crosses $80 Million Domestically

One feather in the cap of DC League Of Super-Pets, of course, is that it was the number one movie in the United States and Canada this past weekend, dethroning Jordan Peele's Nope, which made $44 million in its first three days. In its sophomore Friday-to-Sunday, the critically acclaimed sci-fi/horror film took a bit of a dip, dropping a comparative 58 percent, but it firmly ranked #2 behind the new release, having made an additional $18 million domestically.

Having now made over $80 million here at home, Nope is now the sixteenth most successful domestic release of 2022, and in the next few days it will surpass the totals earned by two of the other biggest scary movies of the year: Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett's Scream ($81.6 million) and Scott Derrickson's The Black Phone ($83.1 million). Having been made with a $68 million budget – per Variety – it isn't a runaway box office success just yet, but it most certainly is building as another win for Jordan Peele.

Thor: Love And Thunder Crosses $300 Million Domestically, As Top Gun: Maverick Moves Past $650 Million

In the milestones department, readers will note that Taika Waititi's Thor: Love And Thunder fell to third place on the Top 10 this weekend, but the $13.1 million it earned  was enough to push it past $300 million domestically. It's only the sixth movie of 2022 to hit that benchmark, and it's only the third Marvel Cinematic Universe title (of the six released) to make that much money since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Joseph Kosinski's Top Gun: Maverick also has yet another success to celebrate, as the $8.2 million it made in the last three days has now pushed that blockbuster's total earnings in the United States and Canada over $650 million. It continues to dwarf the ticket sales of every other film put out in 2022 thus far, having made $1.3 billion globally (the movie first crossed the $1 billion mark in late June).

Coming up, Friday will see the box office injected with another excellent dose of star power, as David Leitch's Bullet Train starring Brad Pitt will be hitting theaters alongside Jay Chandrasekhar's Easter Sunday starring popular stand-up comic Jo Koy. Head back here to CinemaBlend next Sunday to see how the new films perform and shake up the Top 10, and you can preview what else is ahead in what remains of the year with our 2022 Movie Release Calendar.

Eric Eisenberg
Eric Eisenberg

NJ native who calls LA home; lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran; endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.