Saturday AM Update: Refresh for analysis By the calendar’s measure of recent box office years, it is the first weekend of summer. But because movie theaters are still closed in most of Europe and Brazil due to the pandemic, Disney decided to move Marvel’s Black Widow to July 9. The good news is that we will finally have a semblance of a summer box office season unlike last year, and United Artists Releasing is filling the vacancy left by Disney this weekend with the Miramax production of Guy Ritchie’s R-rated Jason Statham action title Wrath of Man, which had a solid Friday at the B.O. during the pandemic with $3M (including $500K Thursday previews) and an outlook of a $8M 3-day. That’s a bit more than what Universal’s gritty R-rated Bob Odenkirk shoot-em up scored over its first weekend with $2.5M Friday and a 3-day of $6.8M (that movie now its 7th weekend, bound to see its domestic cume at $24.6M by Sunday off an A- CinemaScore). Next to the meat-and-potato action movies aimed at older guys during the pandemic since last August (we’re not counting videogame adaptation Mortal Kombat), Wrath of Man is set to outrank the debuts of Nobody, Unhinged ($4M), Honest Thief ($4.1M) and The Marksman ($3.1M).
Audience reaction for Wrath of Man was great, with Ritchie see an A-, which was better than the B+ earned by 2020’s The Gentleman, which repped a return to his kinetic, flashy action British capers. That movie, also a Miramax production, was released by STX before Covid hit in late January, on 2,165 theaters and opened to $10.65M. Screen Engine/Comscore PostTrak moviegoers also rated Wrath of Man well with a 77% overall positive and a 58% definite recommend. Guys at 60% made up the overall audience with 71% over 25 and 45% over 35. Diversity demos were 42% Caucasian, 24% Black, 23% Hispanic, and 11% Asian/other. Wrath of Man was strong in the West and Southwest. PLF and Imax repped 34% of Friday’s ticket sales. Critics weren’t as high on Wrath of Man as The Gentlemen, 66% fresh to 75% certified fresh.