‘Lego Batman’ Beats ‘Great Wall’ to Lead U.S. Long Weekend SalesBy
“The Lego Batman Movie” led the U.S. box office for the second weekend in a row, beating new releases including Matt Damon’s Chinese fantasy “The Great Wall” and rapper Ice Cube’s comedy “Fist Fight” over the long weekend.
The family friendly animated hit from Warner Bros. collected an estimated $42.5 million in U.S. and Canadian theaters over the four-day period, ComScore Inc. said Monday in a statement. Among new releases, “The Great Wall,” from Universal Pictures, landed in third place with sales of $21.7 million, while “Fist Fight,” also from Warner Bros., placed fifth and “Lion” was 10th.
“The Great Wall” didn’t top the ongoing popularity of “Lego Batman.” The picture, made by Comcast Corp.’s Universal and the Legendary Entertainment division of China’s Dalian Wanda Group Co., is a test of U.S. interest in Chinese culture and mythology, as well as production partnerships between movie companies in the two countries. Other studios plan releases with Chinese filmmakers.
“The Great Wall” follows crack troops fighting beasts called Tao Tie (TAO TEE-YAY), a symbol of greed in Chinese folklore. Damon stars as a European mercenary who joins the Chinese fighters defending the wall. The picture was expected to bring in $17.5 million in domestic sales through Monday, the estimate of analysts at BoxOfficePro.com.
The movie had already been released internationally. Total estimated worldwide sales so far for the movie top $260 million, according to ComScore. It cost about $150 million to make and garnered just 36 percent positive reviews at RottenTomatoes.com, which aggregates critics’ reviews.
Among other new releases, “Fist Fight” generated sales of $14.5 million through Monday, in line with forecast of $14 million. Ice Cube plays a fired teacher who challenges a coworker to fight after school. The Warner Bros. picture, with an estimated price tag of $22 million, got a 32 percent favorable rating at RottenTomatoes.com.
“A Cure for Wellness,” a thriller from 20th Century Fox, brought in $5 million. Dane DeHaan stars as a young executive sent to retrieve his CEO from a mysterious spa. The $40 million production was expected to generate $6.9 million over the long weekend, according to BoxOfficePro. Reviews were 37 percent positive at RottenTomatoes.
Among the other returning films, Universal’s “Fifty Shades Darker” landed in second place with sales of $23.3 million, and “John Wick: Chapter 2,” from Lions Gate Entertainment Corp., placed fourth with sales of $19.1 million.