With no new major releases for the weekend, Warner Bros.’ “The Batman” has an easy path to repeating its top performance at the domestic box office. The DC adaptation grossed an additional $18.7 million on Friday from 4,417 locations, more than enough to maintain the No. 1 position on North American charts.
That performance represents a 67% drop-off from the film’s $57 million opening day, though that debut figure also includes $21.6 million from Thursday preview screenings populated by eager fans. Looking solely at last Friday’s numbers, “The Batman” is showing a much more encouraging 47% decline.
Compared to other recent superhero releases, “The Batman” is holding a little less mightily than its peers. In their respective second Fridays, Disney’s “Eternals” dropped 63.2% and “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” fell 53.4%, though both of those films represented properties new to moviegoers, thus being less likely to draw a front-loaded performance. When measured up against other WB films featuring the Caped Crusader, “The Batman” is showing a stronger hold than “The Dark Knight Rises” (a 77% drop) and “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” (an 82% drop).
Last weekend, “The Batman” bested box office predictions in its debut, raking in $134 million. Its ticket sales ranked as the best of 2022 so far, and it became the second pandemic-era theatrical release to cross the $100 million mark in its first weekend, after “Spider-Man: No Way Home.” Though the film will face some competition in Paramount’s “The Lost City” next weekend, it’s likely that “The Batman” will continue to clean up on domestic charts until another superhero epic, Sony’s “Morbius,” premieres on April 1.
The dark take on the superhero has earned very positive reviews, with Variety‘s Peter Debruge naming it a critic’s pick and writing that the “grounded, frequently brutal and nearly three-hour film noir registers among the best of the genre, even if — or more aptly, because — what makes the film so great is its willingness to dismantle and interrogate the very concept of superheroes.”
Besides Robert Pattinson as a moody Bruce Wayne, the film also stars Zoë Kravitz as Catwoman, Paul Dano as the Riddler, Andy Serkis as Alfred Pennyworth and Colin Farrell as the Penguin. Directed by Matt Reeves, the production proved to be a prolonged one due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with a production budget ballooning past $200 million. The film has already surpassed $400 million at the global box office — an encouraging start for such an expensive endeavor.
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Along with “The Batman,” the rest of the box office should show the same holdovers maintaining the top five slots.
Columbia Pictures is expecting an additional $9 million gross for “Uncharted” through Sunday. The Tom Holland action vehicle has been holding remarkably well, especially for a special effects spectacle aimed squarely at young men competing against a movie about Batman. The film should only drop 28% in its fourth weekend, rounding out its domestic gross to $113.1 million.
Speaking of stunning Tom Holland holds, Columbia’s “Spider-Man: No Way Home” refuses to leave box office charts nearly three months after its debut. The Marvel money monster is projected to land in fourth, adding an additional $4 million in its umpteenth weekend. That represents a mere 10% drop from its previous outing. The film’s domestic haul should surpass $792 million after Sunday, inching closer to becoming the third film ever to surpass $800 million on North American charts. “No Way Home” is expected to hit digital storefronts on March 15, which could pump the brakes on its continuous box office success.
Elsewhere, MGM and United Artists Releasing’s “Dog” continues to hold strong, adding an additional $1.38 million in its fourth Friday. The Channing Tatum vehicle should surpass a $45 million domestic haul after Sunday; not too shabby for a star-driven drama carrying a $15 million production budget.
Disney and 20th Century Studios’ “Death on the Nile” rounded at Friday’s top five, adding an additional $680,000. After a disappointing debut of $12.8 million, the Kenneth Branagh-led whodunnit has had some merciful holds, falling less than 40% in each of its past three outings. The film has been buoyed by international audiences, drawing $77.6 million overseas.