It took a little longer than previously expected for Fantastic Beasts 3, a.k.a. Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore, to hit theaters, but now the wait is over. The third entry in the Harry Potter spinoff film series has finally arrived, and on the critical front, Fantastic Beasts 3 been met with mixed reviews. But critical reception isn’t always indicative of how a movie will commercially perform, so how did this particular new movie release shake out on its opening night at the box office?
With preview screenings kicking off stateside at 2 pm at approximately 3,350 theaters, Deadline reports that Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore conjured up $6 million for its domestic launch. On the one hand, the threequel far outperformed the next biggest movie that’s opened this week, Father Stu (for which Mark Wahlberg ate “the most miserable food”); that pulled in an estimated $765,000 at 2,705 theaters, a 51% decrease from what it collected from the combined preview and Wednesday screenings. On the other hand, The Secrets of Dumbledore’s opening night haul trailed behind what’s its predecessors raked in on their opening nights, with Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them making $8.75 million and The Crimes of Grindelwald making $7.3 million on its first Thursday alone.
So while Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore isn’t off to a terrible start with its domestic theatrical start, it's not an exceptional launch either. It also doesn’t help that The Secrets of Dumbledore is coming out a week after Sonic the Hedgehog 2, another movie from a popular property that’s targeting families. Looking at other corners of the globe, the third Fantastic Beasts movie has pulled in $97 million from its first week in places like Latin America, Italy and France. Looking to the future, the movie is predicted to make $45-$50 million by the time its domestic opening weekend is done, which also accounts for today seeing many K-12 schools being closed in the United States.
Going back to Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore’s critical reception, the general consensus seems to be that while it’s an improvement over 2018’s The Crimes of Grindelwald, it still suffers from a number of issues. The threequel currently boasts a 51% Tomatometer on Rotten Tomatoes, sandwiched between The Crimes of Grindelwald’s 36% and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’s 74%. Conversely, Fantastic Beasts 3 has a more favorable Audience Score of 83%.
Set in 1932, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore sees protagonists like Eddie Redmayne’s Newt Scamander and Jude Law’s Albus Dumbledore continuing their efforts to defeat the dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald (who’s now being played by Mads Mikkelsen following Johnny Depp’s exit) and his army. For those who’ve either seen the movie already or would like a little extra info ahead of seeing it, check out our piece talking about if Katherine Waterston’s Tina Goldstein is indeed in The Secrets of Dumbledore after she was absent from the trailers. While Fantastic Beasts was announced in 2016 to be a five-film series, the script for Fantastic Beasts 4 hasn’t been written yet.
Don’t forget to read CinemaBlend’s review of Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore and continue checking in with us for more news concerning the movie. If you want to freshen up on what happened in the first two Fantastic Beasts movies, they can be streamed with an HBO Max subscription.
Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.
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