Jungle Cruise: Audiences take film on ride all the way to number one

Jungle Cruise
(Jungle Cruise sails to #1 at box office)

Jungle Cruise, based on Disneyland’s theme park ride where a small riverboat takes a group of travelers through a jungle filled with dangerous animals and reptiles but with a supernatural element, starring Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt opened #1 not just in the United States, but all over the world this past weekend.

According to the mouse, Jungle Cruise opened with “an estimated total of more than $90 million globally, including $34.2 million in domestic box office, $27.6 million in the international box office, and over $30 million in Disney+ Premier Access consumer spend globally.”

Considering the continuing covid-19 pandemic with cases once again rising due to lack of vaccinations and the delta variant, those are very solid numbers for Jungle Cruise. Numbers that Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson celebrated a few times along with his 260 million followers on Instagram.

Debuting in second place with an estimated $6.78M from 2,790 screens was A24’s The Green Knight, a fantasy-adventure starring Dev Patel, Alicia Vikander and Joel Edgerton. The film’s lack of availability of PVOD or streaming services (it’s being given a 20-day exclusive theatrical run) also likely amplified the opening weekend result. 

Falling to third place after topping the box office last weekend was Universal’s Old, about a family on a tropical holiday discovers that the secluded beach where they are relaxing for a few hours is somehow causing them to age rapidly reducing their entire lives into a single day. Old took in an estimated $6.76M in its second week. That represents a steep 60% decline from its $16.85M debut.

Black Widow fell to fourth place in its fourth weekend of release with an estimated $6.43M, representing a drop of 45% from last weekend. Though that’s the lowest drop for the film so far, the Disney/Marvel title’s unexpectedly precipitous box office slide has led it to just $167.07M to date, putting it at the very low end of MCU titles in terms of domestic gross.

Of course, no other Marvel title has been released during the pandemic or, perhaps even more specifically, been given a day-and-date release on Disney+, where audiences have the option of watching the film at home for $29.99. Notably, the simultaneous streaming release situation last week inspired Black Widow star Scarlett Johansson to sue Disney, alleging that her contract promised an exclusive theatrical release and that, by releasing it day-and-date on streaming, the studio was cheating her out of tens of millions in potential bonuses tied to the film’s theatrical performance. Disney strongly disagrees and we won’t see Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson following with his own suit. 

The weekend’s final new wide release, the Matt Damon drama Stillwater about a father travels from Oklahoma to France to help his estranged daughter, who is in prison for a murder she claims she didn’t commit., debuted in fifth place with an estimated $5.12M from 2,531 screens.

Space Jam: A New Legacy finished in sixth place in its third weekend with an estimated $4.27M, a 55% drop from its second week. Despite slowing its decline a bit, the Warner Bros. sequel is still fading much more quickly than is typical for a family-friendly release which is more than likely a result of its availability on HBO Max coupled with the rise of the Delta variant.

In seventh place, Paramount’s Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins, a G.I. Joe spin-off centered around the character of Snake Eyes, tumbled a shocking 70% from its disappointing $13.37M opening last weekend, bringing in just $4M in its second week.

F9 finished in eighth place with an estimated $2.65M in its sixth weekend, bringing the total to $168.55M. The sequel continues to run slightly ahead of Hobbs & Shaw domestically at the same point in its run.

Rounding out the top 10 are Escape Room: Tournament of Champions at #9 in its third week and The Boss Baby: Family Business at #10 in its fifth week. 

REELated: Emily Blunt, Dwayne Johnson “cruise” to number 1 with $90m global take

The Top 10

1. Jungle Cruise (Disney) NEW – Cinemascore: A-; Metacritic: 49; Est. budget: $200 million; also on Premium VOD via Disney+

$34,181,000 in 4,310 theaters; PTA (per theater average): $; Cumulative: $34,181,000

2. The Green Knight (A24) NEW – Cinemascore: C+; Metacritic: 84

$6,784,000 in 2,790 theaters; PTA: $2,432; Cumulative: $6,784,000

3. Old (Universal) Week 2; Last weekend #1

$6,700,000 (-60%) in 3,379 theaters (+24); PTA: $1,983; Cumulative: $30,600,000

4. Black Widow (Disney) Week 4; Last weekend #3; also available on Premium VOD via Disney+

$6,426,000 (-45%) in 3,360 theaters (-590); PTA: $; Cumulative: $167,067,000

5. Stillwater (Focus) NEW – Cinemascore: B-; Metacritic: 60; Est. budget: $20 million

$5,120,000 in 2,531 theaters; PTA: $3,396; Cumulative: $5,120,

6. Space Jam: A New Legend (Warner Bros.) Week 3; Last weekend #4; also on HBO Max

$4,265,000 (-55%) in 3,501 theaters (-501); PTA: $1,218; Cumulative: $60,739,000

7. Snake Eyes (Paramount) Week 2; Last weekend #2

$4,000,000 (-70%) in 3,540 theaters (+21); PTA: $1,130; Cumulative: $22,283,000

8. F9 (Universal) Week 6; Last weekend #5; also on Premium VOD

$2,650,000 (-45%) in 2,348 theaters (-502); PTA: $1,129; Cumulative: $168,545,000

9. Escape Room: Tournament of Champions (Sony) Week 4; Last weekend #6

$2,200,000 (-37%) in 2,086 theaters (-729); PTA: $; Cumulative: $20,522,000

10. The Boss Baby: Family Business (Universal) Week 5; Last weekend #7; also on Peacock

$1,300,000 (-55%) in 1,865 theaters (-908); PTA: $697; Cumulative: $53,400,000

Last weekend, we saw the debut of two theater exclusives with Old (Universal) and Snake Eyes (Paramount) and this weekend, they fell 60% and 70%, respectively. Black Widow fell 68% in its second weekend. None of this proves that PVOD as the villain responsible for the Marvel title’s dramatic fall as touted by the National Association of Theater Owners.

PVOD obviously has an impact, however that parallel play also gives theaters better deals on film rentals. This week, we see how James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad fares in theaters and on HBO Max.