Dungeons and Dragons: Thieves’ honor honors the coffers

The 2023 Sundance Film Festival winner One Thousand and One and the faith-based drama The Only Son also made impressive debuts.

“Dungeons & Dragons: Honor among Thieves” (Paramount) — a reboot of the franchise, not a remake or sequel — was the fifth film of the weekend to open more than $30 million. While the month wasn’t unprecedented — it last happened in March 2017, with four out of five openings over $40 million, three of which were more than $85 million — it’s unusual. More importantly, it reflects the continued recovery of 2023.

“D&D” received better-than-expected reviews (70 Metacritic score) and a boost from its SXSW premiere, but credit goes to the built-in interest in the world-building dice game and the good taste (A- Cinemascore).

It topped pre-release projections with $38.5 million, though it fell short of the $40 million that seemed possible after Friday’s returns. Saturday saw a 15 percent drop, slightly above average, but hardly cause for concern. With many schools facing spring or Easter break, this has a chance to persist. For exhibitors, this is short-term good news; in the case of Paramount, they must recoup $150 million in production costs before release.

It grossed $33 million internationally and failed to open at number one in many territories. Best was China, which brought in only $5 million in more than 10,000 theaters.

Other than “Creed III” (MGM), no other recent opening film (including Disney’s “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania”) does better than its 2.5x multiple. Three times is the measure of lasting success. Even for booming titles, the decline is often 60 percent after the opening. That was the case with “John Wick: Chapter 4” (Lionsgate), which received both the best Cinemascore and reviews of the franchise. It fell 62 percent, but after a strong start it’s now at $123 million. He came second.

Currently tied for third place is “Scream VI” (Paramount) and the new faith-based “His Only Son” (Angel) with $5.3 million. “Scream” could be leading the charge – “Son” was a strong No. 3 on Friday, but fell to No. 6 on Saturday.

As a faith-based title (a retelling of Abraham’s child sacrifice from the Old Testament), it can bounce back on Sunday. If the decline continues, it could fall behind “Creed III.” Still, it reinforces the power of independent, faith-based titles. It had an unconfirmed production cost of $250,000, and a mass marketing campaign to increase its run to 1,920 theaters.

Teyana Taylor entered "thousand and one"

“Thousand and one”

©Focus Features/Courtesy Everett Collection

Also new in the top 10 is the Sundance grand prize winner “A Thousand and One” (Focus), the feature debut of AV Rockwell. This special about a mother taking her son out of foster care opened in 936 theaters for $1.8 million. This is already ahead of many Sundance winners who have chosen the traditional platform route. It performed best in New York, where it brought in eight of the top 10 grossers, with six theaters over $10,000.

All told, it was around $100 million this weekend, down $16 million from last weekend and up $17 million from last year. Year-to-date, it’s about 28 percent above 2022 levels, giving it a full-year trajectory of $9.4 million. The four-week rolling comparison for 2019 remains stable at 70 percent.

The Top 10

1. Dungeons & Dragons: Honor among Thieves (Paramount) NEW – Cinemascore: A-; Metacritic score: 70; Evening. budget: $150 million

$38,500,000 in 3,855 theaters; PTA (per theater allowance): $9,987; Total: $38,500,000

2. John Wick: Chapter 4 (Lionsgate) Week 2; #1 last weekend

$28,200,000 (-62%) at 3,855 (unchanged) theaters; PTA: $7,315; Total: $122,800,000

3. (tie) Scream VI (Paramount) Week 4; Last weekend #3

$5,300,000 (-36%) in 3,106 (-339) theaters; PTA: $1,757; Total: $98,228,000

3. (tie) his only son (Angel) NEW – Cinemascore: A; Evening. budget: $250,000

$5,300,000 in 1,920 theaters; PTA: $2,760; Total: $5,300,000

5. Creed III (MGM) Week 5; Last weekend #4; so on PVOD

$5,007,000 (-39%) in 2,827 (-380) theaters; PTA: $1,775; Total: $148,580,000

6. Shazam!: Wrath of the Gods (WBD) Week 3; #2 last weekend

$4,720,000 (-48%) in 3,451 (-620) theaters; PTA: $1,368; Total: $53,593,000

7. One thousand and one (In Focus) NEW – Metacritic: 80

$1,800,000 in 926 theaters; PTA: $1,942; Total: $1,800,000

8. 65 (Sony) Week 4; Last weekend #5

$1,580,000 (-51%) at 2,113 (-673) theaters; PTA: $748; Total: $30,581,000

9. Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (Disney) Week 7; Last weekend #6

$1,230,000 (-49%) in 1,44o (-475) theaters; PTA: $854; Total: $212,024,000

10. The revolution of Jesus (Lionsgate) Week 6; #8 last weekend

$1,000,000 (-49%) in 1,415 (-549) theaters; PTA: $707; Total: $58,899,000

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 more than $5,000 are listed.

Mill (Rogue)

$221,738 in 249 theaters; PTA: $891

Enys Men NEW – Metacritic: 79; Festivals: Cannes, New York 2022

$71,200 at 62 theaters; PTA: $1,148; Total: $100,000

A good man (MGM) Week 2

$510,210 in 687 (+147) theaters; PTA: $743; Total: $1,751,000

Tori and Lokita (Sideshow/Janus) Week 2

$9,827 at 8 (+6) theaters; PTA: $1,228; Total: $27,254

Nam June Paik: The Moon is the oldest TV (Greenwich) Week 2

$6,623 at 1 theater (unchanged); PTA: $6,623; Total: $22,706

What the hell happened to the blood, sweat and tears? (Abramorama) Week 1

$8,048 at 4 theaters (+3) theaters; PTA: 2012 USD; Total: $18,571

To move on (Roadside attractions) Week 3

$64,000 at 132 (-639) theaters; Total: $2,031,000

Champions (In Focus) Week 4; Also on PVOD

$700,000 at 1,121 (-796) theaters; Total: $15 million

The quiet girl (Neon) Week 6

$92,200 in 129 (-17) theaters; Total: $1,370,000

Back to Seoul (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 7

$64,498 in 103 (+16) theaters; Total: $632,526

The whale (A24) Week 17; Also on VOD

$19,054 in 49 (-40) theaters; Total: $17,443,000

Everything Everywhere At Once (A24) week 54; Also on PVOD

$168,507 at 253 (-354) theaters; Total: $77,021,000

Register: Stay up to date with the latest movie and TV news! Subscribe to our email newsletter here.

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *