Box Office: 'Bad Boys for Life' Still a Champ, 'Rhythm Section' DOA With $2.8M

The Rhythm Section Still 2 - Publicity -H 2020
Endeavor

'The Rhythm Section' suffered the worst opening ever for a movie playing on 3,000 or more screens, while the Harvey Weinstein-inspired pic 'The Assistant' launched to modest numbers at the specialty box office.

Bad Boys for Life easily won Super Bowl weekend at the U.S. box office, earning another $17.7 million for a franchise-best domestic total of $148.1 million.

The pic — which has stayed atop the chart for three consecutive weekends — is a major win for stars Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, as well as Sony.

Bad Boys 3 also led again overseas, collecting $30.8 million from 63 markets for a foreign tally of $142.7 million and a series-high of $290.8 million globally, not adjusted for inflation. (Bad Boys II took in $273 million in 2003.)

Oscar contender 1917 likewise continued to impress on the road to the Academy Awards ceremony on Feb. 9. The World War I movie, from Amblin and Universal, placed No. 2 with $9.7 million for a domestic cume of $119.2 million and $249 million worldwide.

Universal also claimed third place with Dolittle, the troubled family film starring Robert Downey Jr. The pic earned $7.7 million for a meek North American tally of $55.2 million and $126.6 million globally against a production budget of at least $175 million before marketing.

Super Bowl weekend is always challenging for Hollywood, given traffic at the multiplex falls off precipitously on Sunday — studios are even reluctant to open their high-profile titles opposite the NFL championship.

Overall weekend revenue hit $85 million this year, besting 2019’s 15-year low. Nevertheless, it was still the second-worst showing in recent times, per Comscore. The only two new wide offerings over the frame were Gretel & Hansel and the long-delayed The Rhythm Section.

Gretel & Hansel, a dark reimagining of the classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale, bowed at No. 4 with an estimated $6.1 million. While the fantasy horror pic opened on the low end of expectations, it cost a modest $6 million to produce. The film from Orion Pictures was dinged by mixed reviews and a C- CinemaScore, taking a toll on word of mouth.

Meanwhile, The Rhythm Section got badly sacked, grossing just $2.8 million to mark the worst opening ever for a title playing on 3,000 or more screens. New Line's Hoot ($3.4 million) had held the record for nearly 14 years.

Rhythm Section — which is likely to lose tens of millions — was originally supposed to launch almost a year ago, but its release was delayed after star Blake Lively injured her hand.

The $50 million action-drama has plenty of pedigree and was produced by Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson's Eon, home of the James Bond franchise. Paramount picked up domestic distribution rights for a reported $30 million.

Rhythm Section, the tale of a prostitute-turned-assassin who seeks revenge for the death of her family, was spurned by critics while also receiving dismal C+ CinemaScore from audiences.

By contrast, the Metropolitan Opera's live Saturday broadcast of Porgy and Bess in more than 1,000 theaters in North America generated almost as much with $2.6 million.

The Gentlemen rounded out the top five with $6 million for a 10-day total of $20.4 million for STXfilms and Miramax. Globally, the Guy Ritchie-directed pic has grossed north of $48 million.

Among other holdovers, Sony's best picture Oscar nominee Little Women neared the $100 million mark in North America ($98.8 million), while its global total grew to $172.9 million.

In a separate milestone, Lionsgate and MRC's Knives Out is approaching the $300 million threshold globally after finishing Sunday with $293.7 million in worldwide ticket sales. (MRC shares a parent company with The Hollywood Reporter.)

At the U.S. specialty box office, the Harvey Weinstein-inspired pic The Assistant posted an opening location average of $21,176 in New York and Los Angeles. While that's a relatively modest number, it's a promising showing for a Super Bowl weekend indie release, as well as for the month of January.

Indie distributor Bleecker Street says it had hoped for higher numbers, but that an internet outage at the Angelika Film Center in Manhattan slowed traffic dramatically by preventing advance ticket sales.

Directed by Kitty Green, The Assistant stars Julia Garner (Ozark) as the assistant of an unnamed, unseen film industry mogul clearly based on Weinstein, who currently is on trial in New York City.

Specialty holdovers Parasite and Jojo Rabbit both made gains as the Oscar ceremony approaches (both are up for best picture).

Earning $1.6 million from 1,060 theaters, Parasite passed 2001's Amelie to become the sixth top-grossing foreign-language film of all time in the U.S. with $33.4 million in ticket sales, not adjusted for inflation.

Jojo Rabbit, meanwhile, which is playing in 1,173 cinemas in the U.S., earned $1.4 million for a domestic cume of $28 million. Overseas, it collected $5.5 million for a foreign tally of $36.6 million and a pleasing $64.6 million globally.