‘Good Boys’ Surprises Box Office With Best Original Comedy Opening of 2019

R-rated comedy is first in the genre to reach No. 1 at the box office since 2016

Good Boys
Ed Araquel/Universal

A great August for Universal continues this weekend with the release of “Good Boys,” an R-rated comedy that is surprising at the box office with an estimated $20.8 million opening from 3,204 screens. That will make the Seth Rogen-produced raunchfest the first R-rated comedy to top the charts since “The Boss” in April 2016.

On Friday, “Good Boys” earned $8.3 million and did well with audiences, earning a B+ on CinemaScore to go with its 79% Rotten Tomatoes score from critics. The film had been projected for a modest $11-12 million opening this weekend, but will now continue Universal’s streak of comedies like “Night School,” “Girls Trip” and “Blockers” as solid, mid-budget successes at a time when so many adult comedies have failed to take off in theaters.

Universal will take their third straight No. 1 weekend, as “Hobbs & Shaw,” which has been at the top of box office charts the past two weekends, is estimated to earn $13.5 million in its third weekend to bring its total to $133 million. That will also be enough to push Universal’s domestic revenue past the $1 billion mark, having reached that mark this year with the help of other $100 million-plus grossers like “Glass” and “Us.”

Disney’s “The Lion King” takes third with an estimated $11 million in its third weekend, bringing it less than $5 million away from hitting the half-billion mark in domestic grosses and $9 million away from passing the domestic run of the “Beauty and the Beast” remake. Lionsgate/CBS Films’ “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark” is in fourth with an estimated $9.8 million in its second weekend for a 10-day total of $40 million.

Below “Scary Stories” are several wide releases with opening weekend totals below $10 million. In the No. 5 spot is Sony’s “The Angry Birds Movie 2,” which is performing better with critics and audiences than the first “Angry Birds Movie” with a B+ on CinemaScore and a 75% Rotten Tomatoes rating. But the $65 million-budgeted film, which opened on Tuesday is projected to earn just $8.8 million this weekend and $14.5 million six-day opening from 3,869 screens, well below the $38 million opening earned by its predecessor in 2016.

Next is Entertainment Studios’ “47 Meters Down: Uncaged,” which is estimated to earn $7.6 million from 2,853 screens and is tied for the No. 6 spot with the second weekend of Paramount’s “Dora and the Lost City of Gold.” “Uncaged” had been projected before the weekend to match the $11 million opening of the first “47 Meters Down,” but will fall short as it receives a C+ on CinemaScore and a 50% Rotten Tomatoes rating.

Finally, there’s Annapurna’s “Where Did You Go, Bernadette” and WB/New Line’s “Blinded by the Light,” both of which are now estimated to open to under $4 million. “Bernadette,” the latest film from Richard Linklater, did well with audiences who saw the film with a B on CinemaScore, but is not doing well with critics with 43% on Rotten Tomatoes. It’s another wide release disappointment for Annapurna, which has faced financial struggles over the past year and told its staff in a memo that it is “restructuring” its financial deals.

“Blinded by the Light,” which was bought by New Line at Sundance this year for $15 million, earned strong reviews with a 91% Rotten Tomatoes score and an A- CinemaScore grade. But pre-release word of mouth hasn’t picked up as much as WB has hoped, and the film is now looking at an estimated $3.5 million opening from 2,307 screens, putting it outside the top 10 this weekend.