STX is making it rain at the box office with “Hustlers,” the Lorene Scafaria crime film that will set a new opening weekend record for the studio. After making $13.1 million from 3,250 screens on Friday, the movie is now estimated to earn an opening weekend of $32 million.
That beats the expectations set for “Hustlers” prior to the weekend, as trackers had it earning a $25-28 million opening. Even if current estimates had fallen in that range, it still would have topped the STX opening record set by 2016’s “Bad Moms” with $23.8 million.
It’s also the best live-action box office opening ever for its star, Jennifer Lopez, topping the $23 million opening earned by the 2005 comedy “Monster-in-Law.” J-Lo had a big hand in building the word of mouth that brought “Hustlers” this financial success. Critics who saw the film at its Toronto premiere singled her out for praise, calling her performance as a mother figure and scam artist the best of her career. Reviews have been strong with an 88% score on Rotten Tomatoes, while audience scores are solid with 3.5/5 on Postrak.
“Hustlers” is No. 2 on the charts this weekend, as “It: Chapter Two” takes No. 1 again with an estimated $40.4 million second weekend. That’s a 56% drop from the film’s $91 million opening and would give the horror sequel a 10-day total of $153.5 million. While that’s 30% behind the $213 million 1o-day total of the first “It,” it’s still a big success for Warner Bros. and New Line given the film’s $70 million budget.
Not so great for Warner Bros. is “The Goldfinch,” the adaptation of Donna Tartt’s acclaimed novel. Like “Hustlers,” the film premiered at Toronto hoping to gain some awards buzz, but critics have panned the film with a 24% Rotten Tomatoes score. Now, after making just $870,000 on Friday, “The Goldfinch” is on track to becoming one of the biggest bombs of 2019 with an opening weekend of just $2.5 million against a reported $45 million budget.