One year after Lionsgate launched one of the few successful young adult franchises the second film in the series, The Divergent Series: Insurgent, reconnected with pretty much the same audience the first one had. Other newcomers imploded on impact with only last weekend’s champ Cinderella hitting double digit millions.
Opening almost identically to the original Divergent the latest in the series, The Divergent Series: Insurgent brought in an estimated $54M this weekend from 3,875 theaters for a per screen average of $13,942. By comparison, Divergent opened to $54.6M from 3,936 theaters for a per screen average of $13,874. My guess is that the final numbers will fall by a little, but this is a strong opening for the sequel with still two films to go to finish out the book trilogy. 3D surcharges certainly helped the numbers, as the first film wasn’t released in the format, but with a CinemaScore of an A-, it looks like the audience who enjoyed the first film enjoyed the further tales of Shailene Woodley and company. Overseas the film brought in an estimated $47M from 76 markets, opening at #1 in 66 of those territories.
Falling 49% in its second weekend was the latest Disney live-action reinvention, Cinderella, which brought in an estimated $34.5M bringing its total up to $122M. Its drop was just about on par with last summer’s Maleficent which fell 50.6% in its second weekend. At its current pace Cinderella should be able to break the $210M barrier domestically. Overseas the film grossed an estimated $41.1M bringing its worldwide total to $253M.
Third place belonged to Liam Neeson’s latest “Taken but not Taken” film, Run all Night which brought in $5.1M, according to estimates, a fall of 53.6% from last weekend, bringing its cume up to $19.7M. A final gross in the area of $30-35M is likely, which would be among the worst of this post-Taken action films.
Opening poorly in fourth place was the Sean Penn-led The Gunmen which shot up $5M from 2,816 theaters for a per screen average of $1,779. While Penn isn’t known for opening a film this has to be seen as a disaster from the perspective of distributor Open Road Films. Luckily the production budget of $40M wasn’t high, but it’ll be nearly impossible to even hit that low number. The CinemaScore was a B- showing that the few people that saw the film didn’t like what they saw.
A third straight action film landed in fifth this weekend as Kingsman: The Secret Service took in an estimated $4.6M in its sixth weekend, bringing its total up to $114.5M.
Another new film debuted in sixth place with the Christian-themed Do You Believe? calling up an estimated $4M from 1,320 theaters for a per screen average of $3,030. The creators of this film were behind last year’s surprise hit God’s Not Dead which opened this same weekend in 2014 to $9.2M on its way to a strong $60.7M finale. It looks like Do You Believe? might be lucky to hit even one third of that number, but if the production budget was anything like the $2M spent on God’s Not Dead, the film could still be pretty successful.
Holdovers took the remaining slots in the top 10. The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel ordered up an estimated $3.45M in its third weekend, bringing its total up to $24M. Eighth place belonged to the Will Smith starrer, Focus which took in another $3.3M, according to estimates, bringing its total up to $49M. In ninth place was Chappie which took in an estimated $2.65M this weekend for a total so far of $28M. And rounding out the top ten was everyone’s favorite undersea sponge, The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge out of Water which soaked up an estimated $2.35M bringing its total to a robust $158.8M.
The top ten films grossed $118.9M which was down 8% from last year when Divergent opened at number one with $54.6M; and down 6.5% from 2013 when The Croods opened at number one with $43.6M.