The former, a nearly silent sequel to the 2018 film “A Quiet Place,” nabbed a notable $4.8 million from 3,000 U.S. venues on Thursday. Meanwhile, Disney’s “Cruella” collected $1.4 million in Thursday evening previews from 3,892 locations.
Through the extended weekend, the two films should provide a much-needed boost to movie theaters after a nearly desolate 14 months due to the pandemic. The hope, among cinema operators and Hollywood studios, is that “A Quiet Place Part II” and “Cruella” will kick off a delayed summer movie season that continues with “In the Heights” (June 11), Universal’s “Fast and Furious” sequel “F9” (June 25) and Disney and Marvel’s “Black Widow” (July 9), among others.
For “A Quiet Place Part II,” its $4.8 million haul represents a bigger first-day debut than its predecessor. The original film, which opened on April 6, 2018, pulled in $4.3 million on Thursday previews and ultimately earned $50 million in its initial weekend of release. It became a word-of-mouth hit, ending its box office run with $188 million in the U.S. and $340 million globally.
The follow-up film — again directed by John Krasinski and led by Emily Blunt — is tracking to have a smaller, though still successful, opening weekend. It’s currently projected to make $30 million through Sunday and $36 million by the time Monday’s holiday rolls around. However, those projections are on the conservative side and could easily increase if momentum sustains through the weekend.
“A Quiet Place Part II” centers on the surviving members of the Abbott family — played by Blunt, Millicent Simmonds and Noah Jupe — as they continue living in silence to hide from creatures that hunt sound. This time, they’re also facing the terrors of the outside world. It cost $61 million to produce.
It may not be a close battle for first place. “Cruella,” an origin story about the infamous “101 Dalmatians” villain Cruella de Vil, is expected to generate $17 million to $23 million by Sunday. Through Monday’s holiday, its total haul could surpass $30 million. Those ticket sales come with an asterisk because “Cruella” won’t be available exclusively in theaters. It’s debuting simultaneously on Disney Plus Premium Access, where subscribers can rent the film for an extra $30.
Set in 1970s London, the PG-13 “Cruella” follows Emma Stone as Estella de Villa, whose career as an aspiring fashion designer somehow turns into an obsession with stealing puppies and skinning them for their fur. The cast includes Emma Thompson and Paul Walter Hauser. Craig Gillespie (“I, Tonya”) directed the movie.