Twenty-two years after Paramount’s “Mission: Impossible” first hit the big screen, the franchise shows no signs of slowing down as the sixth installment of the series, “Fallout,” makes $23 million from 4,386 screens, to put the film on course for a $60 million opening.
While previous installments would have a higher opening weekend if inflation is taken into account, an opening above $57 million would give “Fallout” the highest raw opening in franchise history, passing that of “Mission: Impossible II” back in 2000.
If word of mouth can push Saturday numbers above expectations, the film could set a new opening weekend record for leading man Tom Cruise, topping the $64.8 million launch for the 2005 adaptation of “War of the Worlds.”
Regardless, “Fallout” is by far the most critically successful film in the “M:I” series, becoming the first to earn an A from CinemaScore audience polls (the three previous installments of the series earned an A-). It also has the highest Rotten Tomatoes score of the franchise with a “Certified Fresh” 98 percent rating from critics.
Following next in line in the top five is Universal’s “Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again” with an estimated weekend total of $15 million and a $70 million domestic total after 10 days in theaters. That puts it roughly 12 percent ahead of the 10-day total made by the first “Mamma Mia!”
In third is Sony’s “The Equalizer 2,” which looks to take a tough drop of over 60 percent to a $14 million second weekend. While the draw of Denzel Washington gave this mid-budget thriller a very solid $36 million opening, the presence of “Mission: Impossible – Fallout” in theaters will likely weigh down the numbers for the remainder of this film’s run.
Completing the top five are two animated films dueling for families’ attention: Sony’s “Hotel Transylvania 3” and Warner Bros. “Teen Titans Go! To the Movies,” the latter of which is opening on 3,188 screens this weekend. While “Teen Titans” had the edge on Friday with a $4.2 million opening day total — including $1 million from Thursday previews — industry estimates see “Hotel Transylvania” taking the No. 4 spot with $13 million in its third weekend.
“Teen Titans Go!,” meanwhile, is expected to slide to an $11 million opening and the No. 5 spot on the charts. It’s a decent result for this Cartoon Network movie adaptation, though independent trackers were expecting a slightly higher result at around $14-15 million.
Warner Bros. didn’t put much money down on “Teen Titans,” spending $10 million on the production budget while keeping marketing costs down with a largely digital advertising campaign that didn’t expand until last week’s San Diego Comic-Con. Critics largely enjoyed the film with an 89 percent Rotten Tomatoes score, but its B+ CinemaScore rating shows an audience firmly divided by age, with moviegoers under 25 giving it an A while moviegoers over 25 gave it a B-.