“American Sniper” Crushes the Second Box-Office Bomb of 2015
American Sniper is pulling in an estimated $62 million at the U.S. Box Office, continuing to defy expectations and destroy the competition.
And it’s Johnny Depp‘s newest starring vehicle that is paying the price. Mortdecai, from Lionsgate, was made on a reported $60 million budget, but the farce from director David Koepp, which also stars Gwyneth Paltrow and Ewan McGregor, pulled in a paltry $1.5 million on Friday, putting it on track to gross about $4.3 million for the weekend.
Mortdecai marks the third box-office bomb in a row for star Johnny Depp – not including his supporting role in Into the Woods – after Transcendence and The Lone Ranger. Studios now have to be questioning his viability as an audience draw, in the wake of his previous success in the Pirates of the Caribbean and Alice in Wonderland films for Disney. Depp will next appear in director Kevin Smith‘s Yoga Hosers in June and will play infamous criminal Whitey Bulger opposite current Oscar nominee Benedict Cumberbatch in Black Mass in December. Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass is currently filming, and the fifth Pirates of the Caribbean movie, Dead Men Tell No Tales is in pre-production.
Mortdecai will be the second box-office flop in a row in wide release in the U.S., after Sniper crushed Blackhat last weekend in its first week of wide release. Blackhat has grossed less than $8 million worldwide on a production budget of $70 million.
Universal’s The Boy Next Door, starring Jennifer Lopez, earned $5.7 million on Friday, and should pull in about $15.6 million for the weekend, good enough for second place. Respectable, considering the film’s $4 million budget.
Both in their second week of release, The Wedding Ringer and Paddington should both earn around $12 million this weekend, raising their total takes to $40 million. Ringer earned $20.6 million in its first weekend, despite the dominance of American Sniper, a record for an R-rated comedy released in January.
A third new wide release, Strange Magic, an animated fairy tale from LucasFilm, is estimated to pull in $5 million this weekend.