When the first trailer for Sonic The Hedgehog debuted, it… well… it did not go as planned. Fans didn’t like Sonic’s look. The buzz was bad and the studio announced it would push back the release date in order to make changes. That’s typically a terrible sign, and yet, here we are 9 months later watching Sonic put up a huge number on opening weekend.
Thanks to above average reviews, good word of mouth and a healthy dose of video game nostalgia, Sonic The Hedgehog looks like it will open north of $50M this weekend. It’s a huge accomplishment for any movie but especially for one that was openly the subject of ridicule a little less than a year ago. You can check out the box office estimates for the 3-day weekend below, courtesy of Box Office Mojo, which does not include anything these movies may make on Monday.
|1.||Sonic The Hedgehog||$57,000,000||Total: $57,000,000||
|2.||Birds Of Prey||$17,115,000||Total: $59,273,302||
|3.||Fantasy Island||$12,400,000||Total: $12,400,000||
|4.||The Photograph||$12,270,000||Total: $12,270,000||
|5.||Bad Boys For Life||$11,305,000||Total: $181,327,306||
|7.||Jumanji: The Next Level||$5,700,000||Total: $305,716,286||
Obviously the lead story here has to be Sonic. It’s a little early to speculate on whether Paramount has a full-blown future franchise on its hands, but it’s hard to imagine the studio not going back to the characters pretty soon. Jim Carrey is just delightful as the villain Dr. Robotnik, and Ben Schwartz does good voice work as the title character. Here, they’re given OK-plus material. If they’re given anything better than that moving forward, the sequel could and should be better than this, which is exciting to think about it.
Coming in second place here is Birds Of Prey. The take between $15 and $20M might seem like par for the course as a lot of movies drop about fifty percent from their first to second weekends, but there’s actually a bit more intrigue here. Reviews have been solid to pretty good. There was some hope that the good buzz would generate an above average second weekend for the loveable villains, but it seems like those who were turned off by the film’s marketing and/ or the title aren’t that apt to give it a second look.
Beyond these two, I’d also like to single out The Photograph, which is riding pretty decent reviews to more than $12M this weekend. That’s a solid take for a movie with a rumored production budget of $16M, and of course, no box office article lately would be complete without a shoutout to Bad Boys For Life, which just keeps rolling. The comedy is set to grab another $10M plus this weekend, which will bring its total to more than $180M domestic. Well played Will Smith and Martin Lawrence.
Parasite also expanded this week back into more than 2,000 theaters after its Best Picture win at the Oscars. If you have not seen it yet, I cannot recommend it strongly enough. Don't let the subtitles stop you. This movie is getting incredible reviews even from people who wouldn't consider themselves the type to normally watch international films. You will not be bored. Everyone I have recommended it to has loved it. Don't miss out on one of the best movie-viewing experiences of the year!
Two more quick things. First, shoutout to Jumanji 2, Kevin Hart and The Rock, who just keep filling up that bag with money. Second, you can check back with us on Monday for more analysis on the box office weekend and likely some figures for how the top movies finished the long weekend out.