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‘Coco’ Strikes Gold at Black Friday Box Office, Tops ‘Justice League’

Disney-Pixar’s “Coco” easily beat Warner Bros.-DC Entertainment’s “Justice League” at the Friday box office with $18.6 million at 3,987 North American sites, winning the day by a $2.1 million margin.

The animated musical fantasy has grossed $40.8 million in its first three days, while “Justice League” pulled in $35.5 million at 4,051 locations during the same period. Projections show that “Coco” will wind up the five-day Thanksgiving holiday with about $71 million during the Wednesday-Sunday period, beating “Justice League” by about $12 million.

“Coco” is out-performing pre-release forecasts and received an A+ CinemaScore from moviegoers when it opened on Wednesday. It’s on track for the third-best Thanksgiving holiday opening ever, trailing two other Disney titles — “Frozen” with $93 million in 2013 and “Moana” with $82 million in 2017.

Audiences surveyed by comScore’s PostTrak gave “Coco” strong ratings with 62% calling it “excellent” and another 24% marking it “very good.” The survey also showed 73% of viewers saying they would “definitely recommend” the movie to friends.

“The film should have a nice long run in theaters throughout the holiday season,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst with comScore.

“Coco,”  directed by Lee Unkrich and co-directed by Adrian Molina, is based on the Day of the Dead holiday in Mexico and centers on a 12-year-old boy who dreams of becoming a musician and explores his family history in the Land of the Dead. The studio has not given a price for the movie. Disney-Pixar titles are usually budgeted in the $175 million to $200 million range.

“Justice League,” the fifth installment of the DC Extended Universe, has finished its first eight days with a cumulative $147.3 million domestic total after opening with a B+ CinemaScore.  It’s the lowest performer among the DC Extended Universe. “Wonder Woman” grossed $163.5 million in its first eight days in June and “Suicide Squad” took in $192.2 million in its first eight days last year.

Gal Gadot stars as Wonder Woman along with Ben Affleck as Batman, Henry Cavill as Superman, Jason Momoa as Aquaman, Ezra Miller as the Flash, and Ray Fisher as Cyborg. Warner Bros. has not disclosed the production cost,  believed to be as much as $300 million.

Lionsgate’s family drama “Wonder” continued showing impressive traction in third with $8.7 million at 3,140 locations on Friday for an eight-day total of nearly $56 million. The film, which stars Jacob Tremblay as a fifth grader with a facial deformity, has a modest $20 million budget.

Disney-Marvel’s “Thor: Ragnarok” finished fourth with $6.6 million at 3,281 sites on Friday, lifting its 22-day domestic total to $267 million. It’s topped “Despicable Me 3” as the sixth-highest grosser of 2017.

Fox’s “Murder on the Orient Express” grossed $5.2 million at 3,214 venues on Friday to finish fifth. The detective mystery should wind up the weekend with $74 million domestically in its first 17 days.

Paramount’s “Daddy’s Home 2” took in $5 million at 3,518 sites for a sixth-place finish. The family comedy sequel is headed for a 17-day total of around $72 million by the end of the weekend.

Sony’s faith-based animated movie “The Star” followed with  $2.8 million at 2,837 venues on Friday and is projected to finish the five days with $9.7 million for a 10-day domestic total of $22.2 million. “The Star,” focusing on the stories of the animals during the Nativity, is released through Affirm Films and co-financed by Walden Media.

Sony’s legal thriller “Roman J. Israel, Esq.” took in $1.8 million at 1,648 locations on Friday and is projected to finish the weekend with $6.5 million. The studio is marketing the movie as a potential awards contender due to Denzel Washington’s performance.

STXfilms’ raunchy comedy “A Bad Moms Christmas” also grossed $1.8 million at 2,306 sites on Friday and should wind up the holiday weekend with a 26-day total of $59.5 million. Fox Searchlight’s expansion of awards contender “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri” came in 10th on Friday with $1.6 million at 590 screens and will gross about $6 million for the five days.

The holiday weekend is one of the busiest moviegoing periods of the year. Last year’s five-day Thanksgiving weekend saw total grosses his $260.5 million with “Moana” opening with $82 million, and “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” taking in $65 million in its second weekend — marking the fifth best Thanksgiving holiday of all time.

Focus Features’ World War II drama “Darkest Hour,” starring Gary Oldman as Winston Churchill, opened strongly with a projected $245,000 at four theaters for the five days. The well-reviewed film is playing at the Arclight and Landmark in Los Angeles and the Union Square and Lincoln Plaza in New York City.

 

 

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