Turtles and a humongous shark are joining the Barbenheimer parade and fueling another great weekend at the box office.
Greta Gerwig’s Barbie is on course to earn another $54 million — one of the biggest third weekends of all time domestically — as it hits $460.4 million in North America and crosses $1 billion globally, a milestone it will achieve today or tomorrow in a huge win for Warner Bros. and Mattel.
It’s the first live-action film in history that’s directed by a woman solo to join the billion-dollar club, and is already the biggest live-action film of all time domestically for a female director, solo or otherwise, after passing up the $413 million earned by in North America by Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman and the $426 million earned by Captain Marvel, which was directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck.
Barbie will have no trouble staying at the top of the weekend chart; which movie follows in second place is a toss up. Saturday morning estimates for the weekend show Oppenheimer and new offerings Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem and shark pic Meg 2: The Trench in a close race for No. 2 with roughly $29 million each, according to estimates from various rival studios.
Paramount is being more bullish and predicting $30 million for the TMNT reboot after the pic earned $9.3 million on Friday. The PG family movie, written by Seth Rogen, is one of the best reviewed studio films of the year and earned a stellar A CinemaScore from audiences. Mutant Mayhem opened mid-week in order to get a jump on the competition for a five-day launch in the $45 million range.
Warners’ Meg 2, opening everywhere on Friday, is a follow-up to 2018 summer success The Meg, which opened to $45 million amid a less-crowded marketplace. The sequel earned a B- CinemaScore, not uncommon for a pic laced with horror. Meg 2 grossed $12 million on Friday, including $3.2 million in Thursday previews.
Universal’s Oppenheimer, like Barbie, remains a force of nature in its third outing as it races past $500 million worldwide. The Christopher Nolan-directed pic about the making of atomic bomb is expected will finish Sunday with a global tally of $551 million, the top gross ever for a World War II pic ahead of Nolan’s Dunkirk ($527 million) and Steven Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan ($482 million), not adjusted for inflation.
And the three-hour film is already the fifth-best showing ever for Nolan, and one of the top biographical dramas of all time, not adjusted.
Numbers will be updated Sunday morning.
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