Weekend Box Office Wrap-up: May 17, 2015

Pitch Perfect 2 box office

The Barden Bellas sung their way to the top of the box office this week, but Mad Max had a lovely weekend as well.

Coming in the top spot this weekend is the musical/comedy sequel Pitch Perfect 2 (read our review), which made $70.3 million in its first three days. That's an astounding figure, and it's higher than what the 2012 original made in its entire theatrical run ($65 million). Clearly, the franchise has a large and loyal following that was eagerly anticipating the follow-up, and the omnipresent marketing campaign certainly helped as well. Even if the critical reception wasn't as strong this time around, those who saw it agreed that it was a fun ride, which gave it appeal to casual moviegoers.

It remains to be seen how strong the legs of Pitch Perfect 2 will be as the summer schedule becomes more and more crowded in the coming weeks. The high opening weekend was probably a product of the series' biggest fans going out to support it, and movies that debut with this much typically see a steady decrease after they come out. That said, Pitch Perfect plays well to an underutilized demographic (female moviegoers) and will continue to not just draw that crowd in, but also operate as solid counter-programming. Universal has another hit for 2015.

The #2 film this weekend is Mad Max: Fury Road (read our review), which made $44.4 million in its opening weekend. Though that is a far cry from what Pitch Perfect 2 brought in, fans of George Miller's post-apocalyptic action flick should still consider this a win. Though it was earning near-universal critical acclaim and sported a terrific marketing campaign, there was still some question as to how widespread the reach of a Mad Max film could be (even with A-listers like Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron in leading roles). Plus, the R-rating probably limited its audience appeal, but it was still able to parlay that phenomenal word-of-mouth into a great start for its box office run.

And Mad Max should continue to post healthy totals in the coming weeks. The critical and audience response is turning it into a must-see cinematic event, and the number of hot button talking points it brings up (like feminism) will only add further incentive for those still on the fence. When international numbers are taken into account, Mad Max is already at $109.4 million, meaning that Warner Bros. should turn a profit on their $150 million investment. Great news for all who loved the film.

Mad Max Fury Road - Max and Furiosa

After spending the last two weeks on top, Avengers: Age of Ultron fell to #3 with $38.8 million. The superhero sequel is now the highest-grossing film of 2015 domestically with $372 million and has already joined the ranks of the $1 billion club.

Coming in #4 is Hot Pursuit. The maligned road trip comedy fell 59 percent from its modest opening weekend numbers and made $5.7 million this week. It is now at $23.5 million total.

Rounding out the top five is Furious 7, which added $3.6 million to its $343.7 million domestic total.

Coming in #6 is Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2. The comedy sequel grossed $3.6 million over the weekend to raise its domestic total to $62.9 million.

The Age of Adaline is the #7 film after making $3.2 million. The film has now made $37 million domestically.

Despite being in theaters for two months, Home is still hanging around the top ten, coming in #8 this weekend with $2.7 million. The latest from DreamWorks Animation is currently at $165.6 million domestically.

Ex Machina characters

Indie sci-fi drama Ex Machina is the #9 film this week with $2.1 million. The film has now made $19.5 million in the States.

Finishing off the top ten is Far From the Maddening Crowd with $1.3 million. It is now at $2.6 million domestically.

[NOTE: These are only weekend box office estimates - based on Friday and Saturday ticket sales coupled with adjusted expectations for Sunday. Official weekend box office results will be released on Monday, May 18 - at which time we'll update this post with any changes.]

Source: Box Office Mojo

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