Disney’s “Raya and the Last Dragon” is showing great endurance at the box office despite a weaker-than-expected opening, adding another $5.2 million from 2,261 locations in its third weekend, as theaters in Los Angeles reopen.
Through three weekends, the animated Disney film has taken in $23.4 million in North America and $71.2 million worldwide, even though it was released as a premium on-demand title for streaming subscribers on Disney+.
“Raya” is performing in theaters much like Warner Bros.’ “Wonder Woman 1984” and “Tom & Jerry,” which also opened in theaters while being available to home viewers. That suggests a demand for moviegoing that could pay off as more venues reopen and theatrically exclusive films like Disney’s upcoming “Black Widow” arrive in theaters.
Speaking of “Tom & Jerry,” the Warner Bros. film added $3.8 million in its fourth weekend, giving it second place on the charts and a domestic total of $33.7 million. Two Lionsgate films, “Chaos Walking” and “The Courier,” are in a narrow race for third, with “Chaos Walking” holding a narrow lead with $2.25 million and a $10 million total after three weekends. “Courier,” which Lionsgate co-distributed with Roadside Attractions, opened this weekend to $2 million from 1,433 screens. Universal’s “The Croods: A New Age” completes the Top 5 with $620,000 and a $55.6 million total.
Industry estimates put this weekend’s overall box office total at around $19 million, compared to $17.9 million for last weekend. That boost can be nearly entirely credited to theaters starting to reopen in Los Angeles. So far, only 37% of the county’s theaters are back online, as AMC and Cinemark have reopened L.A.-area locations while smaller chains like Laemmle and Arclight won’t reopen for a few more weeks. Also yet to reopen is Regal, which has eschewed reopening its 536 locations on a state-by-state basis.
But the return of one of the box office’s biggest markets has put the industry in a position where all of the Top 5 films on next weekend’s charts could have grosses of over $1 million for the first time since the pandemic shutdown began.
Next weekend, Warner Bros. will open “Godzilla vs. Kong,” which, like all 2021 Warner films, will also be released on HBO Max but could have a $10 million-plus opening from moviegoers interested in seeing the titanic creature on the big screen. Also opening is Universal’s “Nobody,” a thriller starring Bob Odenkirk and written by “John Wick” creator Derek Kolstad. “Nobody” grossed $2.6 million this weekend from four overseas markets, including $1.2 million from Russia, the homeland of the film’s director, Ilya Naishuller.