Box Office Surprise: 'Joker' Could Beat 'Maleficent' in its 4th Weekend

Maleficent and Joker - Split - Photofest-H 2019
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures/Photofest; Warner Bros./Photofest

New entries 'Black and Blue' and 'Countdown' are each eyeing a quiet $8 million debut, while the long-delayed 'The Current War' may not get to $3 million.

In a suprise twist, Warner Bros.' Joker — now in its fourth weekend — could beat Disney's Maleficent: Mistress of Evil and reclaim the No. 1 spot at the domestic box office just days after becoming the top-grossing R-rated pic of all time.

Joker grossed $5.6 million on Friday for a domestic tally of $264.1 million. Globally, it has crossed the $800 million mark.

Both Joker and Maleficent are looking at weekend earnings in the $18 million range, with many giving the former an edge.

Maleficent, playing in 3,790 cinemas, opened to a disappointing $48.6 million last weekend.

In terms of new offerings, it's a sleepy weekend at the box office.

Sony's action thriller Black and Blue grossed $3.1 million Friday from 2,067 theaters, including $675,000 in Thursday previews, for a projected $8.5 million weekend.

Naomie Harris and Tyrese Gibson star in the Screen Gems project, about a rookie cop who inadvertently captures the murder of a young drug dealer on her body cam. Deon Taylor directed from a script by Peter A. Dowling. 

STXfilms' Countdown, playing in 2,675 cinemas, likewise grossed $3.1 million on Friday, including $515,000 in previews, for a projected $8 million weekend. The feature follows a young nurse (Elizabeth Lail) who downloads an app that claims to predict exactly when a person is going to die, and it tells her she only has three days to live.

The Current War: Director's Cut finally arrives on the big screen two years after Harvey Weinstein premiered the film at the Toronto Film Festival. Shortly after, the movie was shelved amid the scandal engulfing the disgraced entertainment mogul.

Marking the first release from 101 Studios, the company launched by former Weinstein Co. executive David Glasser, A Current War earned $947,000 Friday from 1022 theaters for a projected $2.7 million.

Alfonso Gomez Rejon directed the movie about the dramatic race between Thomas Edison (played by Benedict Cumberbatch) and George Westinghouse (Michael Shannon) to illuminate the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, as emotionally wrought. But that pain would also lay the groundwork for the movie he wanted to make.

Along with Black and Blue, Sony is bringing back an extended version of Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, which has already grossed $140 million at the domestic box office, to 1,674 locations starting on Friday.

Oct. 26, 8:30 a.m. Updated with Friday grosses and revised weekend estimates.