THURSDAY UPDATE: Continuing its hyperdrive in overseas markets, Star Wars: The Last Jedi added $20.3M at the international box office on Wednesday. Those cutie Porgs have now screeched to $295M overseas and $573.8M globally. Offshore, their wide eyes will see the $300M mark crossed today, and at this rate will also get to $600M worldwide.
The international intake on Wednesday reps 10% of the opening weekend, one percentage point down from the Monday and Tuesday hauls. Star Wars: The Force Awakens likewise saw its first Wednesday drop by 1%, so we’re still working in the same galaxy.
The UK has now crossed $50M on Jedi, dipping only slightly yesterday. Other markets are relatively stable, although Spain saw a big hike from $400K on Tuesday to $1M on Wednesday.
Again, a lot will be borne out this coming weekend as school holidays kick in, and particularly with having Christmas fall on a Monday. Expect to see some pick up in those percentages versus TFA.
Meanwhile, although it does not bow in China until January 5, TLJ‘s last market to open, the Shanghai premiere was held yesterday to much fanfare. China will remain the wild card on this film, possibly adding over $100M to the gross. We’ll keep a keen eye on what’s happening there when BB-8 rolls around the Middle Kingdom.
WEDNESDAY UPDATE: Star Wars: The Last Jedi stormed across the $500M global mark on Tuesday, adding a combined $42.1M across domestic and 54 overseas material markets. Yesterday’s turnstile action takes Luke, Leia and the newer recruits to $536.7M worldwide and $274.8M at the international box office. Offshore, they added $21.8M to rep 11% of the opening weekend, on par with Monday’s results.
Of the Top 5 offshore markets on Jedi, Germany, France and Australia saw Tuesday over Monday increases. The UK remained stable at a $4.3M day and continues to lead all cumes with $46M. Other key hubs were also steady or saw slight variations.
As noted below, the school holiday configuration is different from that of The Force Awakens in 2015 with fewer kids off this time around. TFA‘s first Monday and Tuesday each repped 17% of its record-breaking weekend. Same goes for Jedi‘s 11%.
PREVIOUS, TUESDAY 10:06 AM PT:Star Wars: The Last Jedi‘s first Monday has posted $22.2 million at the international box office in 54 material markets. That lifts the offshore cume on Disney/Lucasfilm’s Rian Johnson-directed sci-fi saga installment to $253M and puts $494.6M in the Millennium Falcon’s worldwide tank. It will handily cross $500M today.
The movie bowed last week, beginning Wednesday in such markets as France and growing to 88% of the overseas footprint through Friday. The full frame was worth $230.8M for the Resistance and came in about 22.3% off Star Wars: The Force Awakens, a great start given how hard fans had been champing at the tauntaun bit for that 2015 film.
The Monday international figure on Force Awakens repped 17% of its first weekend, while last year’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story had a first Monday that was worth 13% of its debut session. The Monday on Jedi is 11% of the weekend (*see note below about how those percentages are calculated).
While the Monday percentage is lower on Jedi, it’s worth bearing in mind that the calendar configuration this time around is slightly different. Force Awakens‘ first Monday was December 21, which saw parts of Germany on holiday and the UK and France both on full holiday. Yesterday, only parts of the UK were already off. France and Germany have not broken for the season yet. Also, importantly, on TFA, the second Friday was Christmas Day. This time, the holiday falls on a Monday which means that there is expected to be a fair bit of catch-up for Jedi next weekend.
In individual markets on Monday, the UK added $4.3M to continue leading at $41.7M. Germany added $2.1M for a $25.4M cume followed by France (+$1.2M/$20.1M cume), Australia (+$1.8M/$17.8M) and Japan (+$2.2M/$16.6M cume).
*Percentages are arrived at by calculating the individual market hauls on standard weekend terms: i.e., in France the standard is Wed-Sun, in Korea, it’s Thurs-Sun, etc. In cases where markets released Jedi on a non-traditional day, those days are not factored into the percentages we’ll be reporting for the next few weeks.
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‘Antebellum’ has a ‘Get Out’ vibe, but doesn’t live up to its twist
“Antebellum” is built around a provocative twist, and it’s a good one — as well as one that definite..
“Antebellum” is built around a provocative twist, and it’s a good one — as well as one that definitely shouldn’t be spoiled even a little. Once that revelation is absorbed, however, the movie becomes less distinctive and inspired, reflecting an attempt to tap into the zeitgeist that made “Get Out” a breakthrough, without the same ability to pay off the premise.
Originally destined for a theatrical run, the movie hits digital platforms trumpeting a “Get Out” pedigree in its marketing campaign, since there’s an overlap among the producing teams.
More directly, the film marks the directing debut of Gerard Bush + Christopher Renz, who have championed social-justice issues through their advertising work. The opening script features a quote from author William Faulkner, whose intent will eventually become clearer: “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.”
If that sounds like a timely means of drawing a line from the horrors of slavery to the racism of today, you’ve come to the right place.
The story begins on a plantation, where the brutal overseers carry out grisly punishments against those tilling the fields. A few have just tried to escape, led by Veronica (Janelle Monae), and they pay a heavy price for their resistance, which does nothing to curb her defiance.
Also written by Bush + Renz, the script take too long before revealing what makes “Antebellum” different, but the middle portion — a “The Twilight Zone”-like phase when it’s hard to be sure exactly what’s going on — is actually the film’s strongest. (Even the trailer arguably gives away too much, so the less one knows, the better.)
The final stretch, by contrast, veers into more familiar thriller territory, and feels especially rushed toward the end, leaving behind a host of nagging, unanswered questions. That provides food for thought, but it’s also what separates the movie from something like “Get Out,” which deftly fleshed out its horror underpinnings.
Although the filmmakers (in a taped message) expressed disappointment that the movie wasn’t making its debut in theaters, in a strange way, the on-demand format somewhat works in its favor. In the press notes, Bush says the goal was “to force the audience to look at the real-life horror of racism through the lens of film horror. We’re landing in the middle of the very conversations that we hoped ‘Antebellum’ would spur.”
“Antebellum” should add to that discussion, so mission accomplished on that level. Monae is also quite good in her first leading film role (she did previously star in the series “Homecoming’s” second season), but otherwise, most of the characters remain underdeveloped.