By Rebecca Rubin
LOS ANGELES, (Variety.com) – STX’s “The Gentlemen” proved no match for Sony’s “Bad Boys for Life,” which again left box office competitors in the dust after collecting $34 million in its sophomore outing.
Those ticket sales, pushing the Will Smith and Martin Lawrence-led sequel past the $100 million mark, were easily enough to claim the No. 1 spot for the second consecutive weekend. The movie continues to impress and has generated $130 million in the U.S. to date.
Though “The Gentlemen” had a respectable opening weekend, it’s likely that “Bad Boys for Life” infringed upon the core demographic for “The Gentlemen,” another action comedy aimed at male audiences. It debuted in fourth place, pocketing $11 million from 2,165 venues. STX bought U.S. rights from Miramax for $7 million; VVS Films is distributing in Canada.
“The Gentlemen” has made $22.5 million at the international box office, where Entertainment Film, Roadshow and Miramax are handling its rollout.
The star-studded action comedy — directed by Guy Ritchie and featuring Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam and Henry Golding — follows an American expat looking to cash out of his London-based marijuana empire. But expectedly, that plan doesn’t go off without a hitch. “The Gentlemen” has earned decent reviews and landed a “B+” CinemaScore from moviegoers, a majority of which were males over the age of 35.
Another new movie, Universal’s thriller “The Turning,” debuted in sixth place with $7.3 million, in line with expectations. Surprisingly, even with an “F” CinemaScore from audiences, “The Turning” had a bigger opening weekend than “Cats,” the studio’s recent big-budget flop that lost the studio around $100 million. “The Turning, based on a 1989 haunted ghost tale, centers on a nanny (Mackenzie Davis) tasked with taking care of two disturbed orphans (Finn Wolfhard and Brooklynn Prince).
In second place, Universal’s “1917” impresses again in theaters after adding a strong $15.8 million in its third weekend of wide release. Director Sam Mendes’ World War I epic, widely seen as this year’s Oscars frontrunner, hit triple digits this weekend with its domestic haul sitting at $104.2 million. Overseas, “1917” amassed $23.71 million from 50 foreign territories, bringing ticket sales to $96.6 million internationally and $200 million worldwide.
Another awards darling, Sony’s “Little Women,” is approaching a similar milestone in the U.S. Greta Gerwig’s take on the classic tale has made a sizable $93.75 million to date. The A-list adaptation placed at No. 8, bringing in another $4.7 million.
Universal’s “Dolittle,” the latest take on the vet who can speak to animals, landed at No. 3, pulling in $12.5 million for a domestic tally of $44 million. The family friendly adventure starring Robert Downey Jr. cost $180 million to produce, meaning it’ll need to play in theaters for a significant amount of time to avoid losing money.
In box office milestones, Disney’s “Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker” surpassed the $500 million mark, one of 15 films to ever reach that benchmark. Globally, the final film in the sequel trilogy has made $1.046 billion.
Through the last week in January, overall domestic box office sales remain up over 12% from 2019. Theaters are expected to get another jolt in February when Warner Bros. comic-book adventure “Birds of Prey” graces the big screen.