Talk about champagne problems.
Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour may have fallen just short of an expected $100 million debut at the domestic box office, but it still did enchanting business. The female-fueled concert film opened to an estimated $95 million to $97 million from 3,850 theaters, thanks to the superstar’s powerful fandom. AMC Theatres, which is distributing the movie, is breaking from the norm and not giving a weekend estimate that is usually provided by Hollywood studios on Sunday morning. Instead, it will wait until Monday morning to declare an official gross.
Swift’s movie has much to celebrate in already becoming the top-grossing concert film of all time in North America in its first weekend, as well as possibly beating Joker ($96.2 million) to serve up the biggest October opening of all time, not adjusted for inflation.
In an unprecedented move, Swift’s team bypassed Hollywood studios and chose AMC Theatres, the world’s biggest cinema circuit, to bring Eras tour to the big screen. In turn, AMC made the pic available to other circuits.
Heading into the weekend, AMC pegged Eras Tour‘s projected opening at $100 million domestically, while others thought it could open to between $100 million and $125 million, considering that global presales stood at more than $100 million a week before Eras was set to open. AMC has been predicting that Eras Tour would open to $50 million overseas from its first 95 countries for a worldwide start of $150 million.
Box office pundits are already speculating that the fact that Eras fell short of $100 million domestically was because there was virtually no walk-up business.
Very few films can match Eras Tour in terms of its standing with both audiences and reviewers. Eras Tour was graced with a coveted A+ CinemaScore by moviegoers and boasts a rare 100 percent fresh critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes. (One qualifier: There are only 25 reviews. Usually, there are 200 or more.)
The power of female moviegoers was underscored once again in the wake of summer juggernaut Barbie. Females made up a whopping 82 percent of Eras ticket buyers. In terms of overall demo stats, 63 percent of ticket buyers were between 18 and 34. The largest group was those between 25 and 34 (32 percent). As expected, teenagers also turned out in force (17 percent).
“We are grateful to Taylor Swift for allowing us to make Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour concert film accessible to millions of fans in movie theaters around the world. Her spectacular performance delighted fans, who dressed up and danced through the film,” said AMC’s executive vp of worldwide programming and chief content officer.
Before the release of Swift’s concert film, Justin Bieber: Never Say Never held the record domestically with a lifetime total of $73 million, not adjusted for inflation. It earned another $26 million overseas for a global total of $99 million. Michael Jackson’s 2009 posthumous documentary/concert film This Is It earned $72.1 million in North America and $181.9 million globally.
Elsewhere, Universal and Blumhouse’s The Exorcist: Believer placed No. 2 in its sophomore outing with $11 million from 3,684 cinemas for a domestic tally of $44.9 million.
Paramount’s family film Paw Patrol: The Mighty Movie celebrated jumping the $100 million mark in its third weekend. In North America, it earned another $7 million for a domestic cume of $49.9 million to finish Sunday with an estimated worldwide tally of $126.3 million. The success of the sequel is a win for Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon chief Brian Robbins.
Lionsgate’s Saw X placed No. 4 with $5.7 million from 3,058 theaters for a domestic tally of $41.1 million through its third weekend.
New Regency and Disney’s The Creator, likewise in its third outing, rounded out the top five with $4.3 million from 2,690 locations for a domestic cume of $32.4 million and a disappointing $89.1 million globally.
More to come.