Melissa McCarthy‘s latest comedy, “The Boss,” withstood super-powered competition from both Batman and Superman and withering critical reviews to take the top spot at the weekend box office, according to early estimates.
Universal’s funny film grossed $23.5 million over the three-day weekend, which pushed it just past the Warner Bros. blockbuster “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.”
That movie banked $23.4 million on its third weekend — another 54 percent decline from the previous frame. Still, “Batman v. Superman” has grossed a super-solid $296.7 million in the U.S. and Canada in only three weeks.
Disney’s animated hit “Zootopia” brought in another $14.4 million at No. 3. Its six-week domestic total now stands at $296 million.
“My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2,” also from Universal, came next in fourth place, with $6.4 million. That sequel has tallied $46.8 million in three weeks.
And STX Enertainment’s ballyhooed action flick “Hardcore Henry” arrived at No. 5 with a $5.1 million gross from showings in 3,015 locations, a poor $1,690 per-screen average.
Other notable freshman films included the Jake Gyllenhaal-Naomi Watts dramedy “Demolition,” from Fox Searchlight, which banked $1.1 million on 854 screens, for a weak $1,317 average. Director Karyn Kusama‘s thriller “The Invitation” averaged $6,774 on 10 screens for Drafthouse. And the Anna Kendrick-Sam Rockwell hitman comedy “Mr. Right” shot up just $25,000 on 35 screens for Focus World.
Rounding out the Top 10 were Sony’s “Miracles From Heaven,” which earned $4.8 million in its fourth week; Pure Flix’s “God’s Not Dead,” which brought in $4.3 million on a reasonable 44 percent decline in its second week; “The Divergent Series: Allegiant,” which grossed $3.6 million for Lionsgate and brought its four-week domestic total to $61.8 million; Paramount’s “10 Cloverfield Lane,” which added another $3 million to its $68 million tally; and Bleecker Street’s “Eye in the Sky,” which banked $2.8 million on its fifth weekend.
The news is good for the two frontrunners: “The Boss” (estimated weekend gross $23,481,195) and “Batman v Superman” (estimated weekend gross $23,435,000).
The opening figure for “The Boss” was slightly less than the $29.1 million that her hit “Spy” debuted with a year ago; that comedy went on to earn $110.8 million domestically. Still, this film was McCarthy’s fifth star vehicle to open above $20 million. Meanwhile, a week after plummeting 69 percent from its huge opening, “Batman v Superman” landed better this time around an should cross the $300 million domestic mark in the next few days.
Whether “The Boss” will remain at No. 1 in the official record books will be determined when final numbers are released on Monday.
Overall, the box office was down 22 percent from the same frame a year ago, when “Furious 7” dominated.