×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Downton Abbey’ to Dominate Box Office Weekend With $30 Million

The feature film version of “Downton Abbey” is heading for an impressive $30 million opening weekend at 3,079 sites for an easy victory at the North American box office, early estimates showed Friday.

The launch of Brad Pitt’s space drama “Ad Astra” will land in second with about $20 million, while Sylvester Stallone’s action-thriller “Rambo: Last Blood” will reel in around $18 million. STX’s second frame of “Hustlers” should finish fourth with about $16 million and Warner Bros.’ third weekend of “It: Chapter Two” will follow in fifth with about $14 million to hit $176 million in its first 17 days.

Of the three new films, “Downton Abbey” is faring the best, easily out-performing pre-release forecasts — which had been in the $20 million range for each of the trio. The ITV series that aired in the U.S. as part of PBS’ Masterpiece Classics followed the lives of the Earl of Grantham and his family as well as the servants who work for them at the large manor house at the turn of the 20th century and won 16 Emmys during its six-season run from 2010 to 2015.

The movie is set in 1927 with the King and Queen of England stopping by Downton Abbey for a royal visit. The original cast members, including Michelle Dockery, Elizabeth McGovern, Maggie Smith, and Hugh Bonneville, are returning for the movie, which is distributed by Focus Features. Imelda Staunton, Geraldine James, Simon Jones, David Haig, Tuppence Middleton, Kate Phillips, and Stephen Campbell Moore have joined the cast.

Julian Fellowes, who created the series and wrote the film’s screenplay, is producing alongside Gareth Neame and Liz Trubridge. Neame produced the series and film through his Carnival Films banner. If estimates hold, “Downton Abbey” will set an opening weekend record for Focus, easily topping the 2015 mark of $22 million set by “Insidious Chapter 3.”

Ad Astra” is debuting at 3,460 venues domestically. Pitt is playing a man who journeys across the solar system in search of his missing father, a dangerous renegade scientist (portrayed by Tommy Lee Jones). James Gray directed “Ad Astra” for Fox from a script he co-wrote with Ethan Gross.

Ruth Negga, Jamie Kennedy, and Donald Sutherland also star in “Ad Astra,” which premiered at the Venice Film Festival. Fox had planned to open the title on May 24 but Disney shifted “Ad Astra” to the fall after buying Fox’s movie assets. Gray began shooting the movie, which carries an $80 million budget, in 2017.

Rambo: Last Blood” is hitting 3,618 locations, 37 years after the series launched with “First Blood.” The story centers on Stallone’s Rambo crossing into Mexico and taking on a violent cartel when the daughter of one of his friends is kidnapped. “Rambo: Last Blood” also stars Paz Vega, Sergio Peris-Mencheta and Yvette Monreal.

The four Rambo films have grossed a combined $728 million in worldwide box office, led by “Rambo: First Blood Part II” with $300 million. Reviews for “Rambo: Last Blood” have generated a mediocre 34% score on Rotten Tomatoes.

Year-to-date box office remains far behind 2018 with $8.17 billion as of Sept. 19, down 5.9%, according to Comscore.

More Film

  • Film Republic Adds Further Sales for

    Film Republic Inks Further Deals for 'God of the Piano' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Sales agent Film Republic has closed further territory sales on “God of the Piano.” Film Movement previously picked up North American rights to the film, as reported exclusively by Variety. Mont Blanc Cinema has taken the rights for Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Paraguay. Limelight Distribution is looking after the Australian and New Zealand releases, Hualu [...]

  • ‘Bears Famous Invasion’s Lorenzo Mattotti Brings

    Lorenzo Mattotti on MIA Title ‘Bears Famous Invasion of Sicily’

    Illustrator Lorenzo Mattotti is no stranger to film festivals. The artist – a long-time New Yorker cover artist and onetime Lou Reed and Michelangelo Antonioni collaborator – has designed posters for past editions of Venice and Cannes, and has contributed to films that played in Toronto and Rome. This year, however, he experienced the festival [...]

  • Dreamworks Abominable

    'Abominable' Release in Malaysia Abandoned

    Plans to release the increasingly controversial Chinese-U.S. co-produced animation film “Abominable” in Malaysia have been dropped after the distributor said that it would not be cut to cater to political sensitivities. The film includes a scene which depicts a map showing the South China Sea and the so called “nine-dash line” that China uses to [...]

  • Hui He

    RAI Com Takes World Sales on Italy/China Doc About Star Soprano Hui He (EXCLUSIVE)

    Italy’s RAI Com has taken world sales on high-profile documentary “Hui He, the Soprano From the Silk Road,” which is about the personal and artistic journey of one of the world’s leading sopranos and also marks a milestone Italian-Chinese co-production. Hui He was born and trained as a singer in the Chinese city of Xi’an, [...]

  • Bruce Springsteen arrives for the New

    Bruce Springsteen Returns to NJ Hometown for Surprise 'Western Stars' Introduction

    Bruce Springsteen returned to his hometown of Freehold, New Jersey to offer a surprise introduction to the first public multiplex viewing of his concert/documentary film, “Western Stars.” Dressed simply in a brown jacket, Springsteen took a moment to say a few words at the AMC Freehold 14 movie theater on Saturday night. “We knew we [...]

  • Backstage in Puglia del film SPACCAPIETRE:

    'Gomorrah' Star Salvatore Esposito Set For De Serio Twins' 'The Stonebreaker'

    Salvatore Esposito, the Italian star who plays young mob boss Genny Savastano in Italy’s hit TV series “Gomorrah,” will soon be hitting the big screen toplining upcoming drama “The Stonebreaker” by twin directorial duo Gianluca and Massimiliano De Serio, who are known internationally for “Seven Acts of Mercy.” The De Serio twins are now in post on “Stonebreaker” [...]

  • Angelina Jolie is Maleficent in Disney’s

    Box Office: 'Maleficent: Mistress of Evil' Tops 'Joker,' 'Zombieland'

    “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” is on track to give Disney another first place finish after scoring $12.5 million in Friday’s domestic ticket sales. If estimates hold, the Angelina Jolie-led film should finish the weekend with about $38 million — well below earlier forecasts but enough to top holdover “Joker” and fellow newcomer “Zombieland: Double Tap.” [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content