“Captain America: The Winter Soldier” surged on Saturday to post a $41.4 million come-from-behind victory over the 3D animated family musical “Rio 2,” and post its second straight weekend win at the box office.
It looked as if it would be one-and-done at No. 1 for Disney’s Marvel superhero sequel after “Rio 2,” from Fox’s Blue Sky Studios, surprisingly took the lead on Friday. And with families expected to provide a Saturday-Sunday bump, the singing parrots — voiced by Anne Hathaway and Jesse Eisenberg — appeared to have the inside track.
But it was “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” that saw its Saturday grosses skyrocket, rising 49 percent over its $11.9 million Friday. “Rio 2,” which posted a $12 million first day, received just a 28 percent bump on Saturday and will come in at around $39 million over the three days. It was a fair fight, with “Rio 2” in a market-high 3,948 theaters and the “Captain America” sequel in 3,938.
The weekend’s two other wide openers battled for third, with the low-budget horror movie “Oculus” taking in $12 million to beat the Kevin Costner football flick “Draft Day,” which finished with $9.7 million.
Superhero movies frequently tumble in their second weeks, so “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” which stars Chris Evans and Scarlett Johansson, showed some impressive staying power. It was off 56 percent from its April record $95 million debut last weekend, a better hold than that of the 2011 original (61 percent), “Thor: The Dark World” (57 percent) and “Iron Man 3” (58 percent).
With another $60 million from overseas, “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” went over the $100 million mark globally for the second weekend in a row and raised its worldwide haul to $476 million after two weeks. Its domestic total is currently $159 million, international is 317.7 million.
The Saturday number for “Rio 2” had to be disappointing for Fox, which after Friday had hoped to come in at around $45 million for the weekend. Instead, the sequel will wind up in the same range as the $39.2 million that the original did on this weekend three years ago.
But the studio can take some solace in the strong overseas showing by “Rio 2.” The first “Rio” film brought in $143 million domestically and $341 million overseas and “Rio 2” is on the same course. It opened in 54 foreign markets this weekend and brought in $62.3 million, raising its international total to $125 million.
The showing by Mike Flanagan’s “Oculus,” which was produced for $5 million, is a win for Relativity Media, which partnered with Blumhouse Productions and WWE Studios to pick up the Intrepid Films thriller after it played at the Toronto Film Festival, for $2.5 million.
“‘Oculus’ was a solid way to enter the micro-budget horror business, and we are pleased that it opened within our expectations,” a studio spokesman said Sunday. It was the first horror film in wide release since January’s “Devil’s Due,” and that had to help.
Flanagan (“Absentia”) directed “Oculus” from a screenplay he wrote with Jeff Howard. Katee Gillan (“Doctor Who”), Brenton Thwaites (“Maleficent”) and Katee Sackhoff (“Battlestar Galactica”) star in the R-rated thriller, which drew a crowd that was 51 percent women and 52 percent under the age of 25.
It received a poor “C” CinemaScore, but that’s typical as the genre’s fans are frequently tough graders; “The Purge,””Paranormal Activity 4” and “Cabin in the Woods” all got the same score. And it has a 71 percent positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes, strong for a horror movie.
The Ivan Reitman-directed football drama “Draft Day” skewed older, attracting an audience that was 82 percent over the age of 25, and it split evenly between men and women.
They gave it a “B+” CinemaScore, which should help the film play over the next few weeks leading up to the NFL’s May 8 draft day, which has become a big event for football fans anxious to see which teams nab the top college stars.
Jennifer Garner, Denis Leary, Frank Langella, Ellen Burstyn, Sam Elliot, Sean Combs and Chadwick Boseman (“42”) co-star in the PG-13-rated “Draft Day,” which was in 2,781 theaters for Summit Entertainment. Reitman’s company, Montecito Pictures, produced the $25 million film with OddLot Entertainment.
Paramount’s Biblical epic “Noah” beat out the low-budget faith-based drama “God’s Not Dead” for sixth.
Darren Aronofsky’s Old Testament tale brought in $7.4 million over the three days for Paramount. Its domestic total is up to nearly $85 million after three weeks, and it has taken in $162 million overseas, after adding $36 million from abroad this weekend.
Freestyle Releasing’s faith-based indie “God’s Not Dead,” which was made for $5 million, took in $5.4 million and is about to hit $41 million domestically in its fourth week.
Fox Searchlight’s “The Grand Budapest Hotel” added another 204 theaters in its sixth week and took in $4 million from 1,467 theaters. That lifts the domestic total for Wes Anderson’s ensemble comedy to nearly $40 million.