A Ghostbusters movie franchise reboot is finally playing in theaters, after many years of talk about Ghostbusters 3 failed to pan out. The relaunch of the paranormal comedy series comes from The Heat writing/directing duo Katie Dippold and Paul Feig, with a main cast composed of comedians Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Leslie Jones, and Kate McKinnon. On top of all that, several cast members from the original 1984 Ghostbusters movie make cameos in the reboot.
Box office predictions for the Ghostbusters reboot have suggested that the film will gross somewhere in the vicinity of $40-50 million during its opening weekend at the U.S. box office (a decent, but not terrific number). So far, the movie appears to be performing in line with those expectations, allowing it to top the domestic box office during its first day of theatrical release.
Ghostbusters (per BOM) opened with $17.2 million at the U.S. box office on Friday, ahead of last weekend’s box office champion, The Secret Life of Pets (which grossed $15 million). The latter is expected to re-claim the top spot for this weekend as a whole, seeing as it’s the type of family-friendly animated movie that normally sees a significant increase from its Friday-to-Saturday box office turnout. Nevertheless, Ghostbusters is now expected to top out with around $46 million over its first three days of showing in U.S. theaters, setting a new opening weekend record for Feig as a director in the process.
Dippold and Feig’s Ghostbusters reboot received generally positive reviews from critics (read our review) and earned a CinemaScore of B+ – the same score that the Feig-helmed R-Rated comedies Bridesmaids and Spy earned before it. Both Bridesmaids and Spy had solid legs at the box office in terms of longevity thanks to word of mouth, so it stands to reason that Ghostbusters could follow suit and possibly make back its $144 million production budget (not counting marketing costs) at the U.S. box office alone. If so, that would improve the chances of the film getting a sequel(s) in the future.
There will be some real competition for Ghostbusters at the box office over the next few weeks, from the franchise sequels Star Trek Beyond and Jason Bourne, followed by the DC Comics adaptation Suicide Squad. For that reason, it’s too early to say for certain whether or not the Ghostbusters reboot is going to continue performing well enough to be considered a “success” and kickoff a new era for the larger Ghostbusters property. On the other hand, Ghostbusters has something of a monopoly on pure comedy entertainment for the next month, which should help its tickets sales. In other words: this may yet prove to be one “gamble” that pays off for Sony Pictures.
Ghostbusters is now playing in U.S. theaters.