Box Office: ‘Suicide Squad’ Heads for Enormous $140 Million Opening Weekend

Suicide Squad Harley Quinn
Courtesy of Warner Bros.

Despite dismal reviews, Warner Bros. “Suicide Squad” is heading for an impressive $140 million opening weekend at the North American box office, early estimates showed Friday.

The supervillain tentpole, playing at 4,255 locations, will wind up in the top 20 domestic launches of all time. “Suicide Squad” will demolish the “Guardians of the Galaxy” two-year-old record for an August opening by more than $45 million and finish as 2016’s third-biggest opening weekend after “Captain America: Civil War” and “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.”

Despite bad buzz, moviegoers are responding with gusto to “Squad,” which is heading for a $62 million opening day — including a massive $20.5 million in Thursday night screenings, making it the 13th biggest preview showing ever. Should the $140 million forecast hold, it would come in at the top end of recent projections.

Many critics had drubbed “Squad,” generating a lowly 26% rating on Rotten Tomatoes — provoking fans to launch a petition to take the site offline. The film, directed by David Ayer, centers on jailed supervillains hired by the U.S. government to undertake covert operations and save the world.

The star-laden cast includes Will Smith, Jared Leto, Margot Robbie, Joel Kinnaman, Viola Davis, Jai Courtney, Jay Hernandez, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Ike Barinholtz, Scott Eastwood, and Cara Delevingne. Warner Bros. spent $175 million making the movie as part of its efforts to create an interlocking cinematic universe filled with DC superheroes, much like what Disney has achieved with the Marvel characters.

Related

SUICIDE SQUAD

China Unlikely to OK ‘Suicide Squad’ Release

Fan support has been strong with 4 million followers for the “Suicide Squad” Facebook page. Online ticket seller Fandango reported Tuesday that “Suicide Squad” was the top August pre-seller in the company’s 16-year history, eclipsing “Guardians of the Galaxy.”

Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst with comScore, said “Squad” is the latest example of the disconnect between critics and audiences as fans made the film the most talked about movie on social media, according to comScore’s PreAct, for the past several weeks.

“According to our PostTrak exit poll data the combination of African American and Hispanic moviegoers made up a huge 41% of the audience with both audiences giving the film a whopping 81% positive score and the cast as a whole was a major reason (at 34%) that people went to see the film,” Dergarabedian said.

He added that comScore tracking showed that 23% off attendees went because of  Smith and 21% due to  Robbie. Smith’s previous top opening came from 2007’s “I Am Legend” with $77 million.

For now, the results are something of a vindication for Warner Bros., which made its first foray into creating a DC universe in March with “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.” That team-up grossed a mildly disappointing $870 million worldwide after an impressive $166 million opening in the U.S.

Related

SUICIDE SQUAD

‘Suicide Squad’ Fans Petition To Shut Down Rotten Tomatoes Over Negative Reviews

Critical response for “Batman v Superman” was largely negative, generating 27% on Rotten Tomatoes, and a B CinemaScore — which portended a 70% decline in its second weekend.

“Suicide Squad” is also expected to open to more than $100 million overseas this weekend when it rolls out across 57 markets, including such major territories as the U.K. and Mexico. However, it’s not expected to receive approval for entry into China due to its dark tone.

Rival studios are avoiding opening against “Suicide Squad” except for EuropaCorp’s family comedy “Nine Lives,” starring Kevin Spacey as an executive transformed into a cat. The $31 million production should open to around $6 million to $7 million at 2,264 locations.

Universal’s second weekend of Matt Damon’s “Jason Bourne” will likely bring in around $21 million as its slides 64% from the opening frame. Still, that should push the actioner past $100 million by the end of the weekend.

STX Entertainment’s “Bad Moms” is showing decent holding power and should decline about 42% to $13 million — giving the raunchy comedy about $50 million in its first 10 days.

Illumination-Universal’s fifth weekend of its hit “The Secret Life of Pets” will finish fourth at about $10 million to push its 31-day total to $318 million.

‘Suicide Squad’ Members: Who’s Who

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 22

Leave a Reply

22 Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. Jd says:

    Its was a so so movie. GotG was way better and more entertaining. You could see and tell how and when clip whete cut from the film. Like the scene where the group find harley again. No one is shocked.

  2. Chief says:

    Marvel will annihilate DC (by using rottentomatoes.com)

  3. Geo says:

    The only disconnect Paul Dergarabedian is between something called “good taste” and movie goers. Just because a lot of pigs eat at the trough does not mean what is in there is any good.

  4. Critics and Trolls are NOTHING but miserable FUCKS THAT needs to SPREAD.HATE AND COMPLAINTS because that’s their mission in life!

  5. Theyhateys_cause_theyanus says:

    Seen it last Thursday. does not deserve all the hate & negativity.

    Had a good time.it is on par with MC movies and the actors did a great job.

    Recommend everyone watch and judge for themselves don’t listen to the BS *critics” who think they are the elite it does not matter !

  6. Chris Darling says:

    God knows, they have a wide open road. The next big film opens Sept 23 and that’s “The Magnificent Seven.” This film can sit for ages and be the only big action film left. They can make a lot of money with no real competition. That’s 8 weekends. And nothing really big booking the main theaters in each multi-plex…..

  7. Mark Behringer says:

    I hate the “big cliche fights” DC feels it has to include as the climax of every one of its movies, and this one’s was no different… this would’ve played better without Croc, and as more of a street-level mission. Everything else about it was enjoyable, I found. I liked it, but FFS, DC… enough with the big battle at the end with the forces of pure evil. Give us some 2nd or 3rd degree writing, here.. it’s 2016, we can handle it.

  8. George says:

    Every hetero male on the planet wants sex with that homicidal bleach blonde chick. The formula is cynical, sexist (I hate using that stupid word), and is a very well conceived scheme to separate suckers from their money.

  9. Martin W. says:

    the funny thing about it is that first everybody complained that marvel is just jokes and fun. But now people accept a bad/simple plot, awful villian, awful editing and cheese dialogs. You know why? Caus it was fun. Wow people are realy desperat for a god dc movie that they eat everything up that is at least a bit joyful.

  10. Geo says:

    People with terrible taste always walk out of bad movies telling themselves how it was an awesome movie. 9/10

  11. Geo says:

    Hey, there is no question – crap sells – and it sells big

  12. Bas says:

    Just came back from the cinema.I will personal rate it 9/10.Excellent come back for the DCEU (Great Mid-Credit scene; the films as of Suicide Squad and onward is meant only for audience and fans) It even deserves to do more than $140 million opening weekend.Long Live Superhero films.Long live the DCEU and MCU (with unique experiences).

  13. Spider says:

    I’m looking forward to “Suicide Squad: Ultimate Edition”. This theatrical release has been heavily tampered with by WB execs, again! ……Note to WB execs: leave the filmmakers the-hell-alone and let them tell the story they want to tell. Have faith in your directors and release their versions of the flick. …Damn!

    • JR says:

      Agree 100%. Ayers cut is probably MUCH better. Hopefully we’ll get to see it on Blu-ray. (Warners can no longer call themselves a “filmmaker-driven” studio)

  14. ASFan says:

    62M is 41M-42M sans previews. And I suspect a drop is in order from true Friday to Saturday and we’ll probably see 130M.

  15. Marie says:

    Of course, this movie got a lot of hype. However, let’s see if this movie can be successful with word of mouth for next weekend.

    • macd says:

      Right you are, Marie. All comments about the monetary success (or failure) of “Suicide Squad” should be withheld until the Monday after the second weekend. By then, word-of-mouth will have kicked in, and we’ll have a clearer view whether the movie is a triumph or a turd. It’s been the same all this summer: great first weeks have nosedived the second week. I’ve never been crazy about Meryl Streep, yet I sincerely hope that next weekend’s “Florence Foster Jenkins” is a mammoth hit that will kick the crap out of “Suicide Squad” and hopefully forecast the end of these overhyped, ridiculously costly piles of garbage that have been polluting the plexes for the past two decades.

  16. Well, of course they’re going to see it opening weekend. They’ve all bought tickets and they’re going to go, if only to see how bad it is and to *have* seen it. But the “disconnect” in question right now is simply between those who have already seen it (critics) and those who haven’t (fans). If word of mouth from non-critics is good a week from now, then we can talk about a true disconnect.

    Also, projections really aren’t actual sales.

  17. Cass says:

    All presale, before we knew how awful it was. Had such high hopes. Awful, just awful.

More Film News from Variety

Loading