×

‘San Andreas’ Soars to $53.2 Million Opening in U.S.

Dwayne Johnson’s “San Andreas” has delivered a dominating $53.2 million opening weekend at 3,777 U.S. locations, soaring past recent forecasts of a $40 million launch for the Warner Bros.-New Line 3D disaster pic.

San Andreas” took in more than five times the $10 million opening of Sony’s romantic comedy “Aloha,” which arrived at 2,815 sites amid extensive negative buzz  — which overcame the star power of Bradley Cooper, Emma Stone and Rachel McAdams. Sony distribution chief Rory Bruer noted that “Aloha,” launched as a counterprogrammer to “San Andreas,” received a B+ CinemaScore among adults 25-34; the audience was 64%  female with 57% of the audience over 30.

“San Andreas” underlines Johnson’s drawing power in the wake of being a key component of Universal’s “Furious 7” and its $1.5 billion worldwide gross. He’s been front and center in the promotion for “San Andreas,” where he plays a heroic helicopter pilot seeking to rescue his daughter, played by Alexandra Daddario, amid the rubble of a mega-quake.

Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Rentrak, noted that “San Andreas” gained momentum throughout the weekend due to the film delivering what he called “pure popcorn movie excitement.”

“Johnson is clearly one of the most bankable stars working today,” he added. “Johnson’s versatility, charisma, humor and his imposing physical presence on the big screen has made him the go-to guy for filmmakers looking to ratchet up the excitement level and drawing power of their films.”

“San Andreas,” which also stars Carla Gugino and Paul Giamatti, earned an impressive A- CinemaScore from audiences, with 70% coming from the over-25 demo. Dan Fellman, Warner’s domestic distribution chief, said Johnson deserves much of the credit.

“He’s a four-quadrant, larger-than-life movie star,” Fellman said. “This is going to have great legs.”

Village Roadshow Pictures co-financed and co-produced “San Andreas” with Warners for $110 million, with most of the film lensing in Australia to take advantage of government incentives. It’s produced by Beau Flynn and directed by Brad Peyton from a screenplay by Carlton Cuse from a story by Andre Fabrizio and Jerry Passmore.

Showings at 390 premium large-format outlets generated $5.3 million in the U.S. Warner Bros. also reported that “San Andreas” grossed $60 million internationally at 14,500 screens in 60 markets.

Universal’s third weekend of “Pitch Perfect 2” led the rest of the pack in the U.S., finishing with $14.8 million at 3,660 locations. The comedy sequel, which carries a modest $29 million price tag, has outperformed expectations with a total of $147.5 million in 17 days in the U.S. with another $80 million-plus internationally.

Disney’s second frame of George Clooney’s “Tomorrowland” finished at a close third with $13.8 million for a $63.2 million 10-day total. The high-priced fantasy, with a $180 million budget, isn’t showing much traction with a 58% decline from its opening weekend.

On the foreign front, “Tomorrowland” hasn’t dazzled either. It took in $29.3 million from 75 markets, including $13.8 million from its first six days in China, to lift international grosses to $70 million.

“Tomorrowland” edged Warner’s third weekend of “Mad Max: Fury Road,” which motored to $13.6 million at 3,255 sites. The Tom Hardy-Charlize Theron tentpole declined 45% and has totaled $115.9 million in the U.S in 17 days.

Disney-Marvel’s fifth weekend of “Avengers: Age of Ultron” finished fifth, ahead of “Aloha,” with $10.9 million at 3,228 sites, declining 50%. The tentpole has hit $427.1 million — passing “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” for the 10th spot on the all-time list of top domestic grossers.

“Ultron” took in $17.6 million overseas to push its international total to $894 million and its worldwide take to $1.32 billion, the sixth highest total of all time.

Despite “San Andreas,” the overall weekend was down around 20% compared with last year’s post-Memorial weekend when Disney’s “Maleficent” opened with $69.4 million and Fox’s  “X-Men: Days of Future Past” took $32.6 million in its second frame.

 

 

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Amanda Awards

    ‘Out Stealing Horses’ Tops Norway’s 2019 Amanda Awards

    HAUGESUND, Norway —  Hans Petter Moland’s sweeping literary adaptation “Out Stealing Horses” put in a dominant showing at Norway’s Amanda Awards on Saturday night, placing first with a collected five awards, including best Norwegian film. Celebrating its 35th edition this year, the Norwegian industry’s top film prize helped kick off the Haugesund Film Festival and [...]

  • Editorial use onlyMandatory Credit: Photo by

    Richard Williams, 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit' Animator, Dies at 86

    Renowned animator Richard Williams, best known for his work on “Who Framed Roger Rabbit,” died Friday at his home in Bristol, England, Variety has confirmed. He was 86. Williams was a distinguished animator, director, producer, author and teacher whose work has garnered three Oscars and three BAFTA Awards. In addition to his groundbreaking work as [...]

  • Instinct

    Locarno Film Review: 'Instinct'

    Now that “Game of Thrones” has finally reached its conclusion, releasing its gifted international ensemble into the casting wilds, will Hollywood remember just what it has in Carice van Houten? It’s not that the statuesque Dutch thesp hasn’t been consistently employed since her startling 2006 breakout in Paul Verhoeven’s “Black Book,” or even that she’s [...]

  • Good Boys Movie

    Box Office: 'Good Boys' Eyes Best Original Comedy Opening of 2019

    Universal’s “Good Boys” is surpassing expectations as it heads toward an estimated $20.8 million opening weekend at the domestic box office following $8.3 million in Friday ticket sales. That’s well above earlier estimates which placed the film in the $12 million to $15 million range, marking the first R-rated comedy to open at No. 1 [...]

  • Pedro Costa’s 'Vitalina Varela' Wins at

    Pedro Costa’s 'Vitalina Varela' Triumphs at Locarno Film Festival

    The 72nd Locarno Film Festival drew to a close Saturday with Portuguese auteur Pedro Costa’s dark and detached film “Vitalina Varela” coming away with several awards together with superlatives from segments of the hardcore cinephile crowd, including jury president Catherine Breillat. In announcing the Golden Leopard prize for the film, as well as best actress [...]

  • Vitalina Varela

    Locarno Film Review: 'Vitalina Varela'

    Frequently beautiful compositions and the theatrical use of a fierce kind of artifice have long been the hallmarks of Portuguese auteur Pedro Costa, regarded by a small but influential group of aesthetes as one of the great filmmakers of our era. For those in tune with his vision, the director’s films offer an exciting lesson [...]

  • Notre dame

    Locarno Film Review: 'Notre dame'

    Not to be too cynical about it, but might the recent horrific fire in Paris’ cathedral attract audiences to a film in which the gothic gem plays a major role? It’s likely a wiser marketing strategy than promoting the unrelenting silliness of Valerie Donzelli’s oh-so-kooky comedy “Notre dame,” the writer-director-star’s return to contemporary Paris following [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content