What’s the comp here? Given the funkiness of the pandemic we can only look at recent genre stats, and the nearest title is Universal/Blumhouse’s The Forever Purge which did $1.33M in Thursday previews at 2,550 theaters from showtimes which started at 7PM. Granted, Escape Room 2 is PG-13 and Forever Purge is R, respectively catering to two different demos: females under 25 and guys over 25. A Quiet Place Part II‘s Thursday ($4.8M) is too big a brand, and New Line didn’t hold previews for Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It.
The first Escape Room played during the first weekend of the year in 2019 earning $2.3M in Thursday previews that began at 4PM before posting a $7.6M Friday and $18.2M opening. Escape Room, made for $9M before P&A, went on to clear a near estimated net $47M profit for Sony after a $155.7M global B.O., of which $57M came from the U.S./Canada. Speaking of Canada, the province of Ontario, which houses the country’s B.O. capital Toronto, reopens at reduced capacity today.
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Forever Purge, over a July 4th weekend where the holiday fell on a Sunday, did $5.77M on its first Friday (including previews), and a 3-day of $12.55M.
Escape Room: Tournament of Champions, which sees the return of filmmaker Adam Robitel, and stars Logan Miller, Taylor Russell, and Deborah Ann Woll, is estimated to make $7M-$8M this weekend at 2,775 locations. The sequel cost before P&A $15M, and Sony protected the movie for a theatrical release versus dumping it to a streamer during the pandemic.
Unlike the weekend’s other wide entry, Warner Bros’ Space Jam: A New Legacy, Escape Room 2 is a pure windowed theatrical release. Space Jam 2 will be debuting in theaters and on HBO Max today sans Thursday night previews. The hope is that the animated-live action hybrid sequel gets to $20M. There’s some lingering concerns out there by some sources about the delta variant; and that families will curb their moviegoing as kids aren’t fully vaccinated yet. Space Jam 2 is booked at 3,950 theaters.
Yesterday, Disney’s Black Widow brought in an estimated $4.9M at 4,160 locations taking its running stateside total to $105.7M. As we reported yesterday the Cate Shortland directed MCU title is the fastest movie to cross $100M during the pandemic, clocking the century mark in six days. Black Widow, which is also available in homes on Disney+ Premier for $29.99, is expected to post a second weekend of $24M-$28M.