Horror film The Invitation tops US box office with US$7 million in disastrously slow weekend

If three new movies hit theaters, but no one is going to see them…

That’s how Sony’s chilling thriller The Invitation managed to top the box office charts with a measly US$7 million. His victory comes with fairly low bragging rights; it’s the lowest number one spot since May 2021, when COVID kept people at home.

Now, it’s not the pandemic that’s stopping audiences from going to the movies, it’s the lack of appealing options. Overall, the domestic box office generated just US$54 million over the weekend, the worst collective result in months.

And the bad times are expected to continue until at least late September or early October, when Don’t Worry Darling (September 23), Halloween Ends (October 14) and the comic book adaptation Black Adam (October 21) open. in theaters. It’s a disappointing finale to an otherwise strong summer in movies, which featured plenty of box office hits including Top Gun: Maverick, Minions: The Rise Of Gru, Thor: Love And Thunder, and Elvis.

Over the weekend, two more films Director George Miller’s R-rated dark fantasy Three Thousand Years Of Longing and John Boyega-led heist drama Breaking also opened in cinemas with poor results.

The Invitation cost US$10 million to produce, so it won’t take a ton of coins to turn a profit. But the negative reviews and its pesky “C” CinemaScore probably won’t be helpful in convincing people to go to the movies for The Invitation. Directed by Jessica M Thompson, the story follows Evie (Nathalie Emmanuel of Game Of Thrones fame) who is invited to her family’s long-lost home in the English countryside, where she uncovers dark secrets.

“Original horror films don’t play particularly well overseas, but in this case the predominantly British distribution should help,” David A Gross, who runs film consultancy Franchise Entertainment Research, said of by The Invitation.

Despite positive reviews, Three Thousand Years Of Longing, which stars Idris Elba and Tilda Swinton as an academic who meets a Djinn who grants his three wishes, cratered in its debut with $2.87 million from 2 436 pitches. It’s a terrible result for a film playing in thousands of theaters across the country.

Given its US$60 million production budget, MGM and United Artists Releasing’s Three Thousand Years Of Longing is shaping up to be one of the year’s biggest bombs. Unless Miller, the acclaimed filmmaker behind Mad Max, finds a genie to grant his wishes, the film is unlikely to come out of the red.

“It’s a weak opening for an original adventure film. At a cost of around $60 million, Three Thousand Years will end in the red, even with a good ancillary cast,” Gross predicts. “Not all movies go as planned. this one did not meet.”

It’s even darker for Breaking, a tense hostage-taking drama, which failed to reach the top 10 on its box office debut. In 13th place, the Bleecker Street film took in US$1.022 million from 902 theaters.

Without competition from newcomers, the remnants of Bullet Train, Top Gun: Maverick, Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero and Beast filled the top five on the domestic box office charts.

Bullet Train took second place with US$5.6 million from 3,513 locations. After a month on the big screen, the Brad Pitt-directed hug has grossed $78 million to date.

Universal Beast’s survival thriller, also starring Elba, took third place with $4.9 million. The film has grossed $20 million to date.

In fourth place, Top Gun: Maverick collected US$4.75 million from 2,962 locations in its 14th weekend of release. It’s a testament to the staying power of Tom Cruise’s hit sequel (or it’s a sign nothing really is playing in theaters) that Top Gun: Maverick is still selling tickets even though it’s available on the home entertainment. With US$691.2 million in North America, the action flick is only US$9 million away from knocking Black Panther (US$700 million) as the fifth highest-grossing film in American box office history.

Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero, which topped the box office last weekend, suffered a steep drop of 78% and fell to fifth place with $4.45 million from 3,100 locations. So far, the anime film has generated US$30 million in North America.

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