×

Box Office: ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ Tops With $77.2 Million, ‘Hot Pursuit’ Flounders

Avengers: Age of Ultron” iced out “Hot Pursuit” at the weekend box office, picking up $77.2 million and topping charts for a second consecutive time.

Disney and Marvel’s comicbook adventure has made $312.9 million domestically since debuting Stateside 10 days ago. That massive figure makes it the second-fastest film to clear $300 million domestically, and its sophomore weekend is the second-biggest in movie history, surpassing “Avatar’s” $75.6 million haul.

The film “Avengers: Age of Ultron” trails on both counts? Its predecessor, 2012’s “Marvel’s The Avengers,” which had earned $373 million at a similar point in its run after scoring a $103 million second weekend.

“It’s a dominant force,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Rentrak. “These second weekend numbers would be a great opening weekend debut for a lot of films.”

Internationally, “Avengers: Age of Ultron” picked up $68 million, pushing the film to $875.3 million globally. Given that major markets such as China and Japan are still left to open and domestic audiences continue to embrace the film, “Avengers: Age of Ultron” should have no trouble becoming the second 2015 release to clear $1 billion globally, behind “Furious 7.”

With Hulk, Iron Man, Captain America and the rest of the super team dominating ticket sales, Warner Bros.’ “Hot Pursuit” landed with a thud, picking up a frosty $13.3 million opening from 3,003 locations. The Reese Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara retread of “The Heat” was crippled by withering reviews, with its debut falling short of projections that pegged an opening of $18 million or higher. It’s also on the low end of Witherspoon’s recent bows for more commercial fare such as “Water for Elephants” ($16.8 million debut) and “This Means War” ($17.4 million debut).

“Given our expectations it was a little lighter than we had hoped for,” said Jeff Goldstein, Warner Bros. distribution executive vice president.

He argued the negative critical reaction took a toll.

“Where we did business, we way over-indexed in the South and in the small towns,” said Goldstein. “We were lighter in the East in review-driven markets.”

The film about an anal retentive cop (Witherspoon) trying to protect a drug boss’s widow (Vergara) was also backed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Witherspoon’s Pacific Standard production company. “Hot Pursuit” attracted an audience that was 62% female and 82% over 25 years old.

Beyond the modest debut number, a C+ CinemaScore means word of mouth will be of the cautionary variety. The budget was a relatively economical $35 million, but the film will struggle to become profitable without a much warmer reception in foreign territories.

In third place, Lionsgate’s “The Age of Adaline” earned roughly $5.6 million, dropping 10% from its previous haul and bringing its total to $31.5 million.

Universal’s “Furious 7” slid into fourth place with $5.2 million, pushing its domestic total to $338.4 million after six weeks in theaters. Globally, the action sequel has earned $1.5 billion.

Sony’s “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2” snagged fifth place with just under $5.2 million, bringing its domestic total to $58.1 million.

A24 continued to expand “Ex Machina,” moving it from 1,279 theaters to 2,004 locations where it earned $3.5 million. The twisty sci-fi thriller has made $15.7 million during its theatrical run.

Among arthouse titles, IFC Films released the Jack Black/James Marsden high school reunion comedy “The D Train” on 1,009 screens, where it did a mediocre $469,185.

Fox Searchlight tried to capitalize on the Mother’s Day holiday, moving “Far From the Madding Crowd” from 10 to 99 theaters and pulling in $760,721 in the process. The adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s classic novel has earned $1 million since debuting last week.

Despite the presence of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, the overall box office trailed ticket sales from the year-ago period by roughly 5%. “Avengers: Age of Ultron” easily topped the second weekend of “Amazing Spider-Man 2,” which made $35.5 million in its sophomore frame, but “Hot Pursuit” paled in comparison to the $49 million debut of “Neighbors.”

Next weekend brings “Mad Max: Fury Road” and “Pitch Perfect 2,” two highly anticipated sequels that should goose ticket sales.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Beyonce Knowles'The Lion King' film premiere,

    ABC Announces Behind-the-Scenes Special for Beyoncé's 'Lion King' LP

    ABC has announced a new behind-the-scenes look into the making of Beyoncé’s “The Lion King: The Gift” LP, which is set to air September 16 on ABC at 10 p.m. EST. Titled “Beyoncé Presents: Making the Gift,” the new hour-long special will allow viewers to “experience the process” behind the “Lion King” companion album, according [...]

  • Jason Lei Howden, Samara Weaving and

    Daniel Radcliffe On Acting With Weapons Nailed To Your Hands

    How did “Guns Akimbo” director and writer Jason Lei Howden convince Daniel Radcliffe to play a character with guns nailed to his hands? Easy, he sent him the script. Radcliffe joined Howden and “Ready or Not’s” breakout star Samara Weaving in the Variety’s Toronto Film Festival studio, presented by AT&T to talk the limits of [...]

  • Box Office: It Chapter Two Maintains

    Box Office: 'It: Chapter Two' Continues International Reign With $47 Million

    Pennywise’s reign of terror hasn’t wavered: Warner Bros.’ “It Chapter Two” maintained first place on box office charts, led by another strong showing overseas. The sequel, based on Stephen King’s horror novel, generated another $47 million at the international box office for a foreign tally of $169 million. After two weeks of release, “It Chapter [...]

  • First still from the set of

    Taika Waititi’s 'Jojo Rabbit' Wins Top Prize at Toronto Film Festival Awards

    Taika Waititi’s “Jojo Rabbit” has won the coveted People’s Choice Award at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival. The honor positions the film for a potential Oscar run and bolsters its awards chances. That’s good news for Fox Searchlight, which must have been disappointed by the lackluster critical reception for the movie, a dark comedy [...]

  • Constance Wu and Jennifer Lopez star

    Box Office: 'Hustlers' Racks Up Solid $33 Million Debut, 'Goldfinch' Bombs

    “Hustlers” rolled in the Benjamins this weekend, collecting $33.2 million when it debuted in 3,250 North American theaters. Boosted by rave reviews and stellar word of mouth, “Hustlers” beat expectations and now ranks as the best start for an STX film, along with the biggest live-action opening weekend for stars Jennifer Lopez and Constance Wu. [...]

  • German Cinema Is Diverse, But Is

    German Cinema Is Varied, But Is It Too Risk Averse?

    One of the strengths of German cinema is its diversity, says Simone Baumann, managing director of the national film promotion agency German Films. As well as the three films at Toronto directed by female German helmers, there was also German filmmaker Thomas Heise’s documentary film essay “Heimat Is a Space in Time.” Then there were [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content