Among a trio of films opening this weekend, ‘Game Night’ earns $1 million in Thursday night previews, followed closely by Natalie Portman-starrer ‘Annihilation’ with 900,000.
Disney and Marvel Studios’ Black Panther continues to set records at the U.S. box office, where it scored the best first week for any title in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
The superhero blockbuster grossed another $14.3 million on Thursday for a seven-day domestic total of $292 million, the fourth-best showing of all time for any film and besting the $280 million earned by fellow MCU title The Avengers in its first week. It is expected to leap past the $300 million mark in North America sometime on Friday afternoon.
Overseas, Black Panther earned $13.3 million on Thursday for an international tally of $228.1 million and worldwide haul of $520.1 million.
The Ryan Coogler-directed tentpole will easily stay atop the chart in its second weekend with earnings of $90 million or more.
In North America, a trio of films goes up against Black Panther, including New Line’s Game Night, the first major studio comedy of the year.
Game Night, starring Jason Bateman and Rachel McAdams, earned $1 million in previews on Thursday night for a projected debut in the $12 million-$14 million range. Directed by John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein, the story follows a couple whose regular game night with friends suddenly turns into a real-life murder mystery. The cast also includes Kyle Chandler, Billy Magnussen, Sharon Horgan, Lamorne Morris and Kylie Bunbury.
Game Night, hoping to avoid the comedy curse that has plagued the box office over the past two years, is McAdams’ first comedy since About Time in 2013.
Filmmaker Alex Garland’s sci-fi pic Annihilation, starring Natalie Portman opposite Oscar Isaac, wasn’t far behind with $900,000 in preview grosses. The movie — which is tracking to open in the $10 million-$12 million range — made headlines late last year when Paramount and Skydance, partners on the movie, sold off international rights to Netflix.
Annihilation tells the tale of a biologist and former soldier who joins a mission to find out what happened to her husband inside “Area X” along America’s coastline, where a sinister phenomenon has turned the landscape into an environmental wasteland where mysterious dangers abound. Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tessa Thompson, Gina Rodriguez and Tuva Novotny co-star.
Both Game Night and Annihilation boast strong reviews.
Every Day, directed by Michael Sucsy, is the first release from MGM’s relaunched Orion Pictures with a focus on low-budget, targeted far. The YA film adaptation, costing less than $5 million to produce, earned $115,000 in Thursday previews. Every Day is tracking to open in the $2 million-$3 million range; MGM insiders say a debut of $3 million would be a win.
The pic, which going after teenage girls and younger adult females, is based on the best-selling book by David Levithan about a 16-year-old girl who falls in love with a disembodied spirit who inhabits a different body every day. Angourie Rice, Justice Smith, Debby Ryan and Maria Bello star.