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‘Black Panther’ Holds on to Box Office Lead as ‘Tomb Raider’ Opens

Marvel movie on pace to reach $600 million domestic while “Tomb Raider” heads for second place finish

Last Updated: March 17, 2018 @ 9:57 AM

“Black Panther” is on its way to becoming the first film in eight years to take No. 1 at the box office for five straight weekends, as it made $7.5 million on its fifth Friday in theaters.

With this result, “Black Panther” is on pace for a estimated $27 million weekend, which would put its domestic total over $600 million and put it in position to pass both “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” and “The Avengers” next week, making it the highest grossing superhero movie on the domestic charts.

Meanwhile, Warner Bros./MGM’s “Tomb Raider” led all films on Friday with $9 million from 3,854 screens, but is expected to finish second with an estimated $22-23 million. That sits on the lower end of pre-weekend studio projections, but is a rough start for the video game adaptation given its $90 million budget. Starring Alicia Vikander, the film has earned a mixed reception with 50 percent among critics on Rotten Tomatoes and a B from audiences on CinemaScore.

Disney’s “A Wrinkle In Time” sits in third, making $4.6 million on its second Friday, as it looks to make roughly half its $33 million opening with an estimated $16 million second weekend. But surprisingly, it may lose the No. 3 spot by the end of the weekend to “I Can Only Imagine,” the indie faith-based film being distributed by Roadside Attractions and Lionsgate.

Expected to only gross $5-6 million this weekend, “I Can Only Imagine” ended up making $6 million on Friday alone, and now is looking at a top five finish with a $15 million opening from 1,620 screens. Starring J. Michael Finley and Dennis Quaid, “I Can Only Imagine” is based on the true father-son relationship that inspired the hit Christian rock song of the same name by MercyMe. While it had a mixed reception from critics with a 55 percent RT score, the film was a hit with Christian audiences on opening night with an A+ on CinemaScore.

In fifth is Fox’s teen gay rom-com “Love, Simon,” which is on pace to hit tracker projections with a $11-12 million opening from 2,402 screens. It’s first film of its kind from a major studio and has been a critical hit with a 90 percent RT score and an A+ on CinemaScore.

Sitting in sixth is WB/New Line’s “Game Night” with an estimated $6 million. At a time when comedies are struggling to find a foothold in movie theaters, “Game Night” is hanging tough with just a 24 percent drop-off in each of the last two weekends, the best hold for an R-Rated comedy in the last five years.

Meanwhile, Sony’s “Peter Rabbit” took seventh, as it crosses the $100 million mark in its sixth weekend with an estimated $5.1 million. Ten weekends into 2018, “Peter Rabbit” is only the second release this year to cross that line on the domestic charts, though “Fifty Shades Freed” will squeak past that mark this coming week.