The Big Picture
- The Equalizer 3 is expected to comfortably top the domestic box office charts, with a projected $35 million finish for its debut weekend.
- Warner Bros.’ Barbie retains the second spot and crosses the $600 million mark domestically, surpassing The Super Mario Bros. Movie as the year’s biggest hit.
- Blue Beetle is expected to claim the third spot but faces minimal interest among fans of the DC Extended Universe and the upcoming DC Universe launch. Its running domestic haul is lackluster at $57 million.
After a rather eventful race for the top spot last weekend, the domestic box office won’t witness similar drama this time around, with The Equalizer 3 poised to comfortably top the chart in its debut. Touted as the final installment of the surprisingly successful series which followed in the footsteps of Liam Neeson’s late-period action hits, the film is exceeding projections and eyeing a $35 million finish across the traditional three-day weekend, which could expand to around $43 million over the extended four-day Labor Day weekend. This is poised to be the second-biggest Labor Day debut ever, behind Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings‘ $94 million opening a couple of years ago.
Starring Denzel Washington as a retired Marine named Robert McCall, The Equalizer 3 made $13 million on Friday, after $3.8 million from Thursday previews. Each film in the trilogy has been helmed by Antoine Fuqua, who most famously directed Washington to an Oscar in Training Day. The first Equalizer film, which was released nearly 10 years ago in 2014, made $101 million domestically and $192 million worldwide. The Equalizer 2 debuted four years later, and grossed roughly the same amount — $102 million domestically and $190 million worldwide.
After throwing down against Sony’s Gran Turismo last weekend and finishing second for only the second time in its blockbuster run, Warner Bros’. Barbie once again took the second spot, and is eyeing a $10 million haul in its seventh weekend of release. The film made $2.5 million on Friday, and is projected to make around $13 million over the four-day extended weekend. But there are more reasons for W.B. to celebrate this weekend: not only did Barbie cross the $600 million mark domestically on Friday, it also finally overtook The Super Mario Bros. Movie’s $1.35 billion lifetime haul to become the year’s biggest hit.
A Tight Race for the Third Spot is Underway
Another W.B. release will claim the third spot this weekend. The lowkey superhero title Blue Beetle made $1.5 million on its third Friday, and is eying $6.4 million across the traditional three-day frame and $8.3 million across the extended weekend. This should take the movie’s running domestic haul to a lackluster $57 million. While the film didn’t cost as much as the typical superhero movie does these days, it found itself between a rock and a hard place as it debuted to minimal interest among fans of the almost-defunct DC Extended Universe, and the soon-to-be-launched DC Universe.
The fourth spot went to last week’s champion, Gran Turismo, which is eying $6.5 million across three days and roughly $8 million across the extended four-day frame. You know what this means: another tight race for the second weekend in a row. Director Neill Blomkamp’s video game adaptation, which was curiously sold as a fact-based inspirational sports drama, will struggle to hit the $30 million mark domestically even by Monday. Fifth place went to Universal’s Oppenheimer, which generated $1.3 million on its seventh Friday, taking its running domestic total to $304 million. This weekend, Christopher Nolan’s three-hour epic will also pass the $850 million mark, becoming his third-biggest hit ever ahead of Inception. Stay tuned to Collider for more updates.