Box office hits and misses: Straight Outta Compton crushes the competition (again)

weekend box office straight outta compton 3
The impressive theatrical run for N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton continued over the weekend, with the gangsta-rap drama extending its stay atop the box-office rankings.

Director F. Gary Grey’s chronicle of the rise and fall of the genre-defining rap group N.W.A. earned another $13.2 million during the three-day span, bringing its total gross to over $134 million. Already the most successful music biopic of all time, Straight Outta Compton remained well ahead of the closest competition, which included three new films that, well … didn’t actually provide much competition.

In its first weekend in theaters, the religious drama War Room managed a second-place finish for the weekend despite appearing on only 1,135 screens. Its $11 million gross gave it an impressive per-theater average, but its limited release and audience demographic (which tends to favor made-for-television movies instead of theatrical releases) aren’t expected to give it much staying power in the week-to-week charts.

The fifth installment of the Mission: Impossible franchise stayed strong in its fifth weekend in theaters, with Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation adding $8.3 million to its overall gross to take the third spot in the rankings. With $170.3 million so far in its U.S. theatrical run and $479.4 million worldwide, Rogue Nation is currently the fourth highest-grossing film in the franchise domestically. It will almost certainly overtake 1996 franchise-starter Mission: Impossible — which earned $180 million domestically during its run — in the near future, and could move into the second-place spot (ousting 2011’s Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol) with a strong finish to its theatrical run.

Owen Wilson and Pierce Brosnan’s thriller No Escape had a tough time of it in its debut weekend, earning just $8.2 million. For the sake of comparison, No Escape was shown in 3,355 theaters, making its final tally that much more underwhelming.

Horror sequel Sinister 2 raked in another $4.6 million over the weekend to take fifth place and increase its domestic gross to $18.5 million. Given the film’s low-end budget (somewhere around $10 million), it’s becoming likely that a Sinister 3 could very well happen.

The rest of the weekend’s ten highest-grossing films were all continuing their runs from previous weekends, with The Man From U.N.C.L.E.  earning another $4.4 million, and Hitman: Agent 47 adding another $3.8 million to its domestic gross. Both action films have been tremendous disappointments for their respective studios, having yet to cover their production budgets and earning generally negative reviews from critics and audiences alike.

In contrast, writer/director/star Joel Edgerton’s thriller The Gift continued its fantastic run with another $3.1 million over the weekend, bringing its total gross so far to nearly $36 million. Not bad for a film that reportedly cost $5 million to make and is being screened in fewer than 2,000 theaters.

In a last-ditch effort to solidify the legacy of Jurassic World as one of the most successful films of all time, Universal Pictures nearly doubled the number of theaters showing the wildly popular dino-sequel this weekend. The result was another $3.1 million for the film — more than double what it earned the previous weekend. The film still sits in third place on the all-time domestic and worldwide box-office rankings ($643 million and $1.6 billion, respectively), but another $16 million in U.S. theaters could move it past second-place film Titanic on the domestic charts.

In the final spot on the weekend’s top-10 rankings, Marvel’s Ant-Man pulled in another $3 million domestically, bringing its U.S. total to $169 million. The film still ranks near the bottom of Marvel’s movie-verse projects in earnings, despite its positive reception from critics and general audiences.

The only other major premiere for the weekend had a dismal debut, with Zac Efron’s DJ drama We Are Your Friends barely crossing the $1.8 million mark despite appearing in over 2,300 theaters. The film’s debut now ranks among the worst opening weekends of this summer — or any summer, for that matter.

The summer movie season continues to wind down this upcoming weekend with a few major releases that include the action franchise reboot The Transporter Refueled, the comedy Dirty Weekend (starring Matthew Broderick and Alice Eve), and the star-studded adventure comedy A Walk in the Woods, featuring Robert Redford, Nick Nolte, and Emma Thompson.

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