Box-Office: ‘Ant-Man 3’ Defies Critics, Cinemascore – Opens Big

According to critics and CinemaScore, the audience is also panning hard for the latest Marvel installment. It didn’t matter the gross.

Marvel entries like “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” (Disney) test the strength of the franchise more than the MCU’s top tentpoles. Based on several elements, the third film of the “Ant Man” series was a great success.

Its domestic three-day take of $US104 million ($225 million) faced real challenges. The title character led two previous films, the second of which opened to $76 million in 2018. The threequel performed 37 percent better than last time. Ticket prices have risen significantly over five years, but this still means they have slightly exceeded attendance.

This happened against some headwinds. The critical consensus (Marvel films generally receive good or better reviews) was decidedly negative (48 points on Metacritic). Even more troubling, it’s given a Cinemascore B — only one Marvel movie has received such a low rating before, “The Eternals” (a B is at best an average reaction from audiences, who usually rate it on a curve).

Still, Saturday’s drop from Thursday’s preview and Friday’s earnings was 27 percent. That’s a smaller drop than the three 2022 Marvel releases, all of which are among the top eight movies of the year. The $104 million topped pre-opening projections by about $10 million.

Jonathan Majors in "Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania"

Jonathan Majors in “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.”


You have to figure out the main character’s past attraction, the curiosity at the beginning of the new phase, and especially the introduction of Kang the Conqueror (Jonathan Majors), which is fueled by interest. It doesn’t hurt that it’s the first big-budget release since December, and the Presidents’ Day holiday boost helped.

The early days don’t guarantee further strength, but even with a steeper drop, this opening confirms Marvel’s dominance. The only fly in the “Ant” ointment is that the foreign (all territories except Russia) only slightly surpassed the domestic. Results in Asia, particularly China, fell short of the Marvel character’s previous opening.

Over the weekend, Disney took the top two spots. “Avatar: The Way of Water” topped last weekend’s No. 1 “Magic Mike’s Last Dance” (Warner Bros. Discovery) with a much better hold (down just 15 percent), despite the latter nearly doubling theaters . The all-time records for James Cameron’s latest film continue to belie the fact that much higher ticket prices have skewed this tally, but by any standards, $657 million domestic and nearly $2,250,000,000 total is outstanding.

As usual, the release of “Quantumania” was ahead of a lot of competition. Briarcliff took the opportunity to release “Marlowe” with Liam Neeson. The adaptation of the classic Raymond Chandler character, with top director Neil Jordan (“The Crying Game”), opened its doors last Wednesday. Despite Neeson’s recent success opening genre films, it took in less than $3 million in its first five days.

The weekend’s return was boosted by backlogs, which – with the exception of the “Titanic” reissue (Paramount) – all fell below 40 percent. Best among them is “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish” (Universal), at No. 4, down just six percent. It has now surpassed “Sing 2,” which was not expected, and has a slim chance of still reaching $200 million. All this so that it can be viewed at home since its third weekend.

The total for all films this weekend reached $142 million. This makes the year 2023 16 percent better than last year. That’s still a nice improvement, though not as far ahead as 2023 so far. Last year, “Uncharted” opened strong on this date with a total of $126 million (which really started the momentum for 2022).

This year is 38 percent ahead of three years ago (when there were early signs of theater avoidance due to Covid). This increases our four-week rolling comparison for 2020 to 86 percent, the best result since Christmas.

"Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey"

“Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey”

Fathom events

Once again, the opportunistic midweek placement of a low-budget horror film has shown real interest. “Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey” (Fathom) earned $1.5 million in just 445 theaters over 5 days with record-breaking bad reviews (17 on Metacritic). That’s not much less than “Marlowe,” which had nearly five times as many dates.

An unusually large number of limited editions from the best specialist companies appeared over the weekend. The best of these was the compilation of this year’s Oscar-nominated short films (Shorts TV). The result was $705,000 in 370 theaters. That’s a nice jump from last year ($434,000 in ‘355).

Focus launched Australian drama “Of an Age” with $411,000 at 289 theaters. “Return to Seoul” (Sony Pictures Classics) opened to $30,000 at two locations to outstanding reviews. “Emily” (Bleecker Street) came in at $40,000 in five. “Pacifiction,” Cahier du Cinema’s No. 1 film of 2022 and an IndieWire favorite, took in $9,462 in New York (with just three shows a day). The ambitious re-release of “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” (Sony Pictures Classics) brought in just $171,000 at 435 theaters.

The Top 10

1. Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (Disney) NEW – Cinemascore: B; Metacritic: 48; Evening. budget: $200 million

$104,000,000 in 4,345 theaters; PTA (Theatrical Average): $23,936; Total: $104,000,000

2. Avatar: The Way of Water (Disney) Week 10; #2 last weekend

$6,118,000 (-15%) in 2,675 (-390) theaters; PTA: $2,287; Total: $657,076,000

3. Magic Mike’s Last Dance (WBD) Week 2; #1 last weekend

$5,525,000 (-33%) in 3,034 (+1,538) theaters; PTA: $1,821; Total: $18,115,000

4. Puss in Boots: The last wish (Universal) Week 9; Last weekend #5; Also on PVOD

$5,260,000 (-6%) at 3,012 (-215) theaters; PTA: $1,746; Total: $166,076,000

5. Knock in the cabin (Universal) Week 3; Last weekend #6

$3,900,000 (-28%) in 2,601 (-1,056) theaters; PTA: $1,499; Total: $30,372,000

6. 80 to Brady (Paramount) Week 3; #4 last weekend

$3,600,000 (-38%) in 3,119 (-820) theaters; PTA: $1,154; Total: $32,248,000

7. Titanic (Paramount) RE-RELEASE (2nd week); Last weekend #3

$2,290,000 (-66%) in 2,132 (-332) theaters; PTA: $1,074,000; Total: $(adjusted estimate) 1,513,000,000

8. Marlowe (Briarcliff) NEW – Metacritic: 41

$1,910,000 in 2,281 theaters; PTA: $837; Total: $2,670,000

9. I miss you (Sony) Week 5; #8 last weekend

$1,725,000 (-32%) in 1,516 (-799) theaters; PTA: $; Total: $

10. A man called Otto (Sony) Week 8; #7 last weekend

$1,600,000 (-39%) in 1,725 ​​(-1,099) theaters; PTA: $928; Total: $60,222,000

Other titles

Films (limited, extended, limited release, and award-oriented release) are listed by week of release, starting with those released that week; after the first two weeks, only films grossing over $5,000 are tracked.

Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey (Fathom) NEW – Metacritic: 17

$679,291 at theaters; PTA: $1,565; Total: $1,519,000

An Age (In Focus) NEW – Metacritic: 71; Festivals: Melbourne 2022

$411,000 at 289 theaters; PTA: $1,422

2023 Oscar Short Films (TV shorts) NEW

$7-$5,000 at 370 theaters; PTA: $1,846

Back to Seoul (Sony Pictures Classics) NEW – Metacritic: 91; Festivals: Cannes, Toronto, New York 2022

$30,785 at 2 theaters; PTA: $15,362; Total: $40,336

Emily (Bleecker Street) NEW – Metacritic: 77; The festivals are: Toronto 2022

$40,133 at 5 theaters; PTA: $8,028

Pacification (Grasshopper) NEW – Metacritic: 75; Festivals: Cannes, Toronto, New York 2022

$9,642 at 1 theater; PTA: $9,642

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (Reissue)

$171,586 at 475 theaters; PTA: $361; Aggregate: (adjusted) $275,000,000

Full time (Music Box) Week 3

$5,727 at 4 (unchanged) theaters; Total: $19,574

Infinity pool (Neon) Week 4; Also on PVOD

$41,912 in 50 (-365) theaters; Total: $5,042,000

Closure (A24) Week 4

$129,228 in 116 (+55) theaters; Total: $616,288

Live (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 9

$209,391 at 162 (-104) theaters; Total: $2,371,000

The whale (A24) Week 11

$134,499 at 363 (-321) theaters; Total: $16,590,000

E.O (Janus/Sideshow) Week 14

$23,100 at 37 (-26) theaters; Total: $997,086

The Banshees of Inisherin (Examination light) week 18; Also on HBO Max and VOD

$33,000 at 265 (-55) theaters; Total: $10,371,000

After sunbathing (A24) week 19; Also on VOD

$13,371 in 15 (-5) theaters; Total: $1,563,000

Everything Everywhere At Once (A24) Week 48; Also on PVOD

$150,793 at 390 (-246) theaters; Total: $72,828,000

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