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‘The Lost City’ Finds Some Box Office Treasure With $31 Million Opening

Paramount’s romcom got strong female turnout in a theatrical market dominated by younger men

Paramount’s “The Lost City” is off to a good start at the box office, taking No. 1 from Warner Bros./DC’s “The Batman” with a $31 million opening weekend from 4,253 theaters.

In a post-shutdown theatrical market where box office success has been defined by films that won the interest of men under 35, “The Lost City” has renewed hope that audiences in other demographics will show up to theaters even during the pandemic when studios offer quality material that isn’t a big blockbuster. Demographics for the film were 56% female, while the over/under age 35 split was even at 47% apiece.

It’s also a victory for one of the film’s stars, Channing Tatum, who already drew strong turnout from women last month with his previous film “Dog” and, like that title, was heavily involved in social media promotion for “The Lost City.” Similar to “Dog,” many of the top over-indexing markets for “The Lost City” were away from the coasts, including Salt Lake City, Denver, Minneapolis and Albuquerque. Tatum’s co-star, Sandra Bullock, has also seen some of her comedy films like “The Heat” over-index in those regions as well.

With stars like Bullock and Tatum in lead roles, Daniel Radcliffe and Brad Pitt in supporting positions and plenty of on-location shooting, “The Lost City” had a much bigger production budget than most romantic comedies with a reported $68-70 million spend and still has work to do to reach theatrical profitability.

But “The Lost City” has also earned generally positive audience and critical reception with a B+ on CinemaScore, 60% recommend rating on Postrak and Rotten Tomatoes scores of 76% critics and 85% audience. With “Morbius,” “Sonic the Hedgehog 2” and “Ambulance” being the major new releases for early April, “The Lost City” will remain as a unique offering in movie theaters, which combined with word-of-mouth could allow it to leg out beyond $100 million domestic.

Warner Bros.’ “The Batman” is in second this weekend with a still-strong $20 million, according to industry estimates. After four weekends in theaters, the Matt Reeves DC film has a domestic total of $332 million.

In third is the Indian blockbuster “RRR,” which is being distributed as an event release by Sarigama Cinemas and has grossed $7.5 million through Saturday. Industry estimates have softened somewhat since Friday to just under $10 million, which would be just short of the Hindi-language record in the U.S. set by “Baahubali 2: The Conclusion” in 2017. But the film is still proof, following the success of BTS’ newest concert film two weeks ago, of the growing power of event cinema to bring in audiences for major international fare.

Sony completes the Top 5 with “Uncharted” in fourth with $5 million and a domestic total of $133.5 million, while Crunchyroll’s “Jujutsu Kaisen 0” takes in $4.5 million in its second weekend for a total of $26.3 million. Sony also saw “Spider-Man: No Way Home” hit the $800 million mark domestically after 100 days in theaters, becoming only the third film in history to reach that milestone.

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