'Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials' #1, But Below Its Predecessor with $30.3M; 'Black Mass' #2 with $22.6M Start; 'Everest' Climbs to Promising $7.2M in IMAX/PLF DebutSeptember 21, 2015 12:54 PM

by Daniel Garris

Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials debuted in first this weekend with $30.32 million. However, the young adult sequel from Fox debuted significantly below expectations and an underwhelming 7 percent below the $32.51 million debut of last year's The Maze Runner. With that said, without adjusting for ticket price inflation The Scorch Trials delivered the eighth largest September debut of all-time (just ahead of 2009's Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs). Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials outpaced Black Mass by a comfortable $7.68 million in the battle for first place this weekend.

Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials opened with $11.00 million on Friday (which included an estimated $1.7 million from Thursday night shows), increased 11 percent on Saturday to gross $12.25 million and declined 42 percent on Sunday to gross $7.07 million. That placed the film's opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.76 to 1. Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials received a solid B+ rating on CinemaScore, which was just below the A- CinemaScore rating of its predecessor. That and the film's sequel nature suggest that The Scorch Trials won't hold up as well in comparison going forward.

Warner's Black Mass debuted in second place with $22.64 million. While the Johnny Depp led crime drama didn't nearly reach the heights that its strong online pre-sales had suggested, the film was still off to a solid start and opened in line with low-end and earlier expectations. Given its moderate price tag, the film's debut was arguably Depp's strongest since the launch of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides back in 2011. Black Mass opened just 5 percent below the $23.81 million start of 2010's The Town, but whether it can duplicate that film's holding power remains to be seen.

Black Mass started with $8.77 million on Friday (which included an estimated $1.4 million from Thursday night shows), was unchanged on Saturday with $8.77 million and declined 42 percent on Sunday to gross $5.10 million. That gave the film a relatively front-loaded opening weekend to Friday ratio of 2.58 to 1, which isn't the greatest initial sign for the film. Black Mass received a B rating on CinemaScore, which while respectable, doesn't suggest that the film will hold up especially well going forward.

Universal's The Visit placed in third with $11.57 million. The low-budget M. Night Shyamalan directed horror thriller from Blumhouse Productions was down 55 percent from last weekend. That represented a sizable, but respectable second weekend decline, especially given the overall new competition that arrived in the marketplace this weekend. The Visit continues to exceed expectations with a ten-day take of $42.56 million. That places the film 32 percent ahead of the $32.20 million ten-day gross of 2006's Lady in the Water.

Last weekend's top film, Sony's The Perfect Guy was down three spots and a sharp 62 percent to land in fourth with $9.75 million. Despite the sharp second weekend decline, in the bigger picture the low-budget thriller starring Sanaa Lathan, Michael Ealy and Morris Chestnut is still performing very nicely with a ten-day gross of $41.46 million. That places The Perfect Guy 4 percent ahead of the $39.70 million ten-day take of last year's No Good Deed.

Everest was off to a healthy fifth place start this weekend with $7.22 million. Universal's adventure drama opened exclusively in 545 IMAX 3D and PLF 3D locations, which gave the film a very promising per-location average of $13,251 for the frame. Everest took in $2.30 million on Friday, was up an encouraging 30 percent on Saturday to gross $2.99 million and declined 36 percent on Sunday to gross $1.93 million. That placed the film's weekend to Friday ratio at a strong 3.14 to 1. Given the strength of this weekend's exclusive debut, prospects are looking bright for Everest when it expands into traditional wide release next weekend.

Sony's War Room continued to hold up very nicely this weekend with a sixth place take of $6.22 million. Continued strong word of mouth continues to drive the Kendrick Brothers produced faith based film, as it was down a slim 20 percent from last weekend. War Room has grossed a terrific $49.05 million in 24 days. The film is currently running 20 percent stronger than the $40.90 million 24-day take of last year's God's Not Dead.

Meanwhile, as War Room continued to excel this weekend, fellow faith based film Captive stumbled out of the gate with an eleventh place start of just $1.39 million. The drama thriller from Paramount starring Kate Mara and David Oyelowo opened below its already modest expectations. As was the case with Samuel Goldwyn's 90 Minutes in Heaven last weekend, potential for Captive was clearly limited by the continued success of War Room.

On the platform front, Lionsgate's Sicario was off to a strong start with $401,288 from 6 locations. That gave the crime thriller starring Emily Blunt, Benicio Del Toro and Josh Brolin a per-location average of $66,881 for the frame. Sicario will expand into wide release on October 2nd.

Weekend Actuals (Domestic) Fri, Jan. 17 - Sun, Jan. 19

Wide (1000+)

1Ride Along$41,516,170--2,663--$15,590$41,516,1701Universal
2Lone Survivor$22,058,815-42%2,989114$7,380$72,868,9364Universal
3The Nut Job$19,423,000--3,427--$5,668$19,423,0001Open Road
4Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit$15,451,981--3,387--$4,562$15,451,9811Paramount
5Frozen (2013)$11,771,854-20%2,979-260$3,952$332,403,2159Disney
6American Hustle$9,866,36319%2,204-425$4,477$115,697,5546Sony / Columbia
7Devil's Due$8,308,220--2,544--$3,266$8,308,2201Fox
8August: Osage County$7,364,7213%2,0511146$3,591$17,953,9914Weinstein Company
9The Wolf of Wall Street$7,069,383-20%1,930-591$3,663$89,845,9814Paramount
10Her (2013)$4,034,417-25%1,7290$2,333$15,033,8445Warner Bros.
11Saving Mr. Banks$3,915,229-40%2,449-222$1,599$75,159,5266Disney
12The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug$3,704,957-54%1,815-1260$2,041$248,524,8026Warner Bros. / New Line
13The Legend Of Hercules$3,397,143-62%2,1040$1,615$14,372,7942Lionsgate / Summit
14The Hunger Games: Catching Fire$2,451,181-44%1,328-434$1,846$417,450,9739Lionsgate
15Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues$2,167,773-63%1,731-1281$1,252$122,099,1225Paramount
16Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones$1,400,117-78%1,569-1314$892$31,333,2253Paramount
17The Secret Life of Walter Mitty$1,300,023-70%1,037-1547$1,254$55,095,8414Fox

Limited (100 — 999)

1Gravity$1,867,037345%944789$1,978$258,277,70616Warner Bros.
212 Years a Slave$1,539,838469%761647$2,023$40,644,13614Fox Searchlight
3Philomena$1,261,381-9%505-102$2,498$24,023,8659Weinstein Company
4Inside Llewyn Davis$1,006,164-47%585-144$1,720$11,044,4257CBS Films
5Dallas Buyers Club$941,207292%419294$2,246$17,813,22012Focus
6Nebraska$883,2080%408-113$2,165$9,657,92510Paramount Vantage
7Captain Phillips$523,771449%903789$580$105,641,43315Sony / Columbia
847 Ronin$449,345-73%343-1016$1,310$37,598,2204Universal
9Walking With Dinosaurs$319,608-77%454-885$704$34,296,2545Fox
10Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2$292,644-11%256-8$1,143$118,427,18617Sony / Columbia
11The Book Thief$226,893-42%190-113$1,194$20,157,29311Fox
12Thor: The Dark World$191,424-39%185-72$1,035$204,233,18611Disney
13Tyler Perry's A Madea Christmas$170,371-84%391-649$436$52,222,0896Lionsgate
14Grudge Match$155,183-92%408-1597$380$29,059,2874Warner Bros.
15Last Vegas$124,946-30%194-46$644$63,603,32112CBS Films
16Free Birds$118,975-25%199-33$598$55,274,79512Relativity Media
17Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa$86,265-36%154-38$560$101,963,47413Paramount
18Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom$80,491-71%122-241$660$7,976,8778Weinstein Company
19Lee Daniels' The Butler$64,566-29%119-17$543$116,529,31723Weinstein Company

Platform (1 — 99)

1The Great Beauty$136,98491%5416$2,537$1,271,22210Janus Films
2The Past$97,24024%3013$3,241$376,6235Sony Pictures Classics
3The Invisible Woman$87,09297%2617$3,350$279,4964Sony Pictures Classics
4Delivery Man$52,265-34%79-54$662$30,069,1309Disney / DreamWorks
5Hubble 3D$47,68278%155$3,179$42,185,784201Warner Bros. / IMAX
6Blue Jasmine$45,056154%2812$1,609$33,145,52026Sony Pictures Classics
7Out of the Furnace$42,031206%9760$433$11,264,4877Relativity Media
8All Is Lost$40,34410%62-7$651$6,177,18914Roadside Attractions
9The Saratov Approach$20,373-37%22-3$926$1,663,26715Purdie Distribution
10Space Station 3D$17,437-10%31$5,812$89,867,124614IMAX
11Like Father, Like Son (2014)$16,044--2--$8,022$16,0441IFC Films
12Blue Is the Warmest Color$15,020-37%12-4$1,252$2,143,42513IFC Films
13The Best Offer$12,874454%65$2,146$19,5603IFC Films
14Journey to the South Pacific$10,79933%40$2,700$104,3358IMAX / MacGillivray Freeman
15Maidentrip$9,068--1--$9,068$16,3265First Run Features
16Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters$8,607-39%24-9$359$68,549,22624Fox
17American Mustang$7,906--1--$7,906$7,9061Vitagraph / Just Media
18Generation War$7,386--1--$7,386$10,0701Music Box Films
19Big Bad Wolves$6,342--6--$1,057$6,3421Magnolia / Magnet
20To the Arctic 3D$6,235-15%81$779$13,765,58592Warner Bros. / IMAX
21In Bloom$5,208-44%20$2,604$19,1882Big World Pictures
22Under the Sea 3D$5,16465%40$1,291$33,724,531258Warner Bros. / IMAX
23Contempt (2013 re-issue)$5,013--2--$2,507$39,19920Rialto Pictures
24Kill Your Darlings$4,794-42%122$400$1,014,11314Sony Pictures Classics
25Life of a King$4,231--16--$264$4,2311Millennium Entertainment
26The Rocket (2013)$3,775-18%53$755$11,1802Kino Lorber
27Fire in the Blood$3,494--3--$1,165$22,39020International Film Circuit
28The Armstrong Lie$3,474-66%9-3$386$367,50711Sony Pictures Classics
29Bettie Page Reveals All$3,160-6%5-1$632$95,8239Music Box Films
30A Touch of Sin$3,023-22%71$432$139,72816Kino Lorber
31Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?$2,969--3--$990$2,9691Film Movement
32Born to Be Wild 3D$2,820-34%71$403$23,136,467146Warner Bros. / IMAX
33Wadjda$2,433-25%8-1$304$1,422,17619Sony Pictures Classics
34Muscle Shoals$2,336-35%116$212$681,61317Magnolia Pictures
35Indigo Children$1,829--1--$1,829$1,8291Striped Entertainment
36More Than Honey$1,368--1--$1,368$77,37332Kino Lorber
37Personal Tailor$1,088-88%1-3$1,088$374,2855China Lion Film
38The Act of Killing$9456%2-2$473$465,68227Drafthouse Films
39Return to Nuke 'Em High: Volume 1$678-79%10$678$4,7352Anchor Bay Films
40Here Comes the Devil$5673%1-1$567$4,5346Magnolia / Magnet
41Sweet Dreams (2013)$482-16%32$161$27,78612International Film Circuit
42Computer Chess$98--1--$98$101,61727Kino Lorber