Warner Bros.′ Black Adam opened with an estimated $67 million, in keeping with studio estimates Sunday, handing Dwayne Johnson his greatest box-office weekend as a number one man and launching the D.C. Comics character he spent a decade to convey to the large display.

Black Adam was a $200-million bid to upset the ability steadiness in a DC Extended Universe dominated by the likes of Batman, Wonder Woman and Superman. The $67 million debut fell effectively shy of that stratosphere, even with the appreciable draw of Johnson appearing in his first superhero film. Still, Black Adam managed the best opening weekend since Thor: Love and Thunder debuted with $143 million in July.

Black Adam, which stars Dwayne Johnson as an historic Egyptian summoned to the trendy day, was notably hobbled by poor critiques (40% recent on Rotten Tomatoes). Moviegoers had been kinder, giving the movie a B+ CinemaScore. It collected $73 million internationally for a $140 million world haul.

Black Adam took a circuitous route to succeed in theatres. The character had initially been deliberate to launch as a villain in 2019′s Shazam! earlier than executives pivoted to provide Black Adam a standalone function. The goofier Shazam!, which price nearer to $100 million to make, opened with $53.5 million in ticket gross sales and wound up an over-achieving success with $366 million worldwide.

The stakes had been larger for Black Adam, although. While selling the movie, Johnson hasn’t been shy about his want to observe up Black Adam with a showdown with Superman. But whether or not the receipts for Black Adam are sufficient to warrant that is still unclear. Under new management, Warner Bros. is overhauling its method to DC Comics diversifications.

Jeff Goldstein, distribution chief for Warner Bros., celebrated the outcomes as a private greatest for Johnson exterior of the Fast & Furious movies, and a PG-13 movie with broad-based attraction that audiences responded to raised than critics. Still, it’s a time of transition for Warner Bros.′ reorganizing DC unit because the studio seeks extra Marvel-sized successes. Next on faucet is Shazam! Fury of the Gods in March.

“It’s all about making good movies. It’s all about finding the right scripts,” mentioned Goldstein. “Our studio is definitely going through a major revamping of our production leadership and style and approach. I think that we’ll be able to crack this nut. We’re definitely focused in on doing that.”

Ticket to Paradise, the Bali-set romantic comedy starring Julia Roberts and George Clooney, proved good counterprogramming. The Universal Pictures release debuted with $16.3 million, effectively above latest gross sales for rom-coms, which have struggled lately on the field workplace. The movie is already successful overseas, the place it’s been in release for the final month, accruing $80.2 million in ticket gross sales.

Earlier this month, Universal’s R-rated Bros, an LGBTQ milestone within the style, debuted with a disappointing $4.8 million. Ticket to Paradise had a notable benefit in its two stars, and appealed notably to older audiences; 64% of ticket patrons had been 35 and up, the studio mentioned.

“It became an event film for all audiences this weekend but especially for older audiences that can be difficult to get into theatres,” mentioned Jim Orr, head of distribution for Universal. “We all know this is a demographic group that doesn’t exactly run out to see films opening weekend. That gives us great encouragement for the weeks and months ahead.”

Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for information agency Comscore, famous it was the primary weekend with a $65 million opener and greater than $100 million in general home ticket gross sales since July. That was owed largely to star energy, he mentioned, within the attraction of each Ticket to Paradise and Black Adam with Johnson.

“He was the engine that really drove this box office despite some headwinds in terms of the DC brand and this not being as known a character,” mentioned Dergarabedian. “This is a very strong starting point for Dwayne Johnson in the mix of DC Comics. He’s like a box-office supercharger. Forty-percent Rotten Tomatoes, but people just want to see Dwayne Johnson on the big screen because he is bigger than life.”

Last week’s prime movie, Halloween Ends, dropped massively in its second weekend. The Universal horror sequel, which was concurrently launched on Peacock, declined 80% with $8 million. Meanwhile, Paramount Pictures’ Smile, continued to defy the standard declines for horror releases. With $8.4 million in its fourth week of release, Smile got here in third and boosted its general home gross sales to $84.3 million.

As extra acclaimed awards contenders land in theatres, Searchlight Pictures’ The Banshees of Inisherin began its run with the most effective per-theater averages of the yr. The Martin McDonagh drama, starring Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson, opened with $181,000 in 4 theaters for a per-theater common of $45,250. For A24, Charlotte Wells’ Aftersun, starring Paul Mescal and Frankie Corio as a father and daughter on trip, additionally debuted solidly in 4 theaters, with a $16,589 per-theater common.

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