Box Office: Will Smith’s ‘Focus’ Disappoints, Despite Opening at No. 1
Focus has opened at No. 1, and while the sexy, R-rated heist movie has helped Will Smith salvage some of the box office credibility he lost with the disastrous After Earth, the $19.1 million opening is still a major disappointment. Despite its debut at the top of the box office heap, Focus is officially one of the lowest openings of Smith’s career.
Pundits had initially projected the film to open above $22 million for the weekend, which would have given it a healthy enough start to potentially recoup its $50 million budget. If nothing else, this was the benefit Focus held over After Earth, in that it’s a much smaller film made for far less than the $130 million the 2013 box office bomb cost.
But even with Focus performing below expectations, reviews have been solid for the movie, which features the first-time on-screen pairing of Smith and Margot Robbie, both of whom will star in the hotly-anticipated Suicide Squad movie next summer. There’s potential that the movie could at least remain steady if word-of-mouth is strong, and if Fifty Shades of Grey continues to decline in the coming weeks, as it appears to be doing now.
In fact, Fifty Shades of Grey is pretty much in freefall. Despite the added media boost of those pesky Jamie Doornan departure rumors and Dakota Johnson’s hosting stint on SNL, the movie went from two-week champ to middle-of-the-pack placer. The movie is currently at No. 4, falling behind both Kingsman: The Secret Service and The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water, which is now in its fourth week. On the plus side, the $10.9 million haul for Fifty Shades of Grey helped bring its worldwide total to just short of $500 Million, so it’s not as if the movie isn’t still a massive success. If anything, it remains one of the biggest success stories of all the movies in the Top 10 this weekend. However, it’s far from the only one.
Despite opening at an underwhelming No. 5, The Lazarus Effect benefited from the same silver lining that saves just about every horror movie from outright bomb status these days: it cost pennies to make, so the threshold for success is much lower. The movie cost Relativity Studios just $3.3 million, so this weekend’s $10.6 million gross has earned three times the film’s budget for the studio. Overall, while it wasn’t exactly a huge weekend for the box office, especially considering many films should have been receiving a boost from last weekend’s Academy Awards ceremony, it wasn’t exactly a disaster either.
But what else made this week’s Top 10? Check out the weekend box office totals below:
TOP 10 AT THE WEEKEND BOX OFFICE – 03/01/2015
1. Focus ($19.1 million)
2. Kingsman: The Secret Service ($11.7 million)
3. The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water ($11.2 million)
4. Fifty Shades of Grey ($10.9 million)
5. The Lazarus Effect ($10.6 million)
6. McFarland, USA ($7.79 million)
7. American Sniper ($7.70 million)
8. The DUFF ($7.1 million)
9. Still Alice ($2.6 million)
10. Hot Tub Time Machine 2 ($2.4 million)