Refresh for latest…: Warner Bros/Gravity Pictures’ prehistoric shark took a whale of a bite out of the box office in its opening this session as it surprised both at home and abroad. With $96.8M across 42 offshore markets, The Meg gobbled up a global launch of $141.3M.
Out of the total international box office debut, China turnstiles gave the co-production $50.3M. That’s a strong start in a competitive landscape with the Sunday estimate ($17.5M/RMB 120M) increasing on the Friday and Saturday. This bodes well for the midweeks — and it helps that one of the local pictures above it is dropping fast.
The Meg played on 12,650 screens in China and topped nearly all comps including Skyscraper, San Andreas and the Jason Statham-led The Mechanic: Resurrection (by 109%). Statham is a big draw in the Middle Kingdom and supported the movie on two recent trips there.
The film falls under the Flagship Entertainment joint venture formed by Warner Bros, China Media Capital and TVB in 2015. Flagship’s Gravity is releasing in the PROC where WB gets a bigger chunk of the box office because of the co-pro status (43% + ancillary vs 25%-27% full-stop).
This is the first picture to surface from the JV pact to develop and produce Chinese-language titles, including global tentpoles, for worldwide distribution. The Meg of course is in English, but incorporates plenty of Chinese elements.
Contrary to recent China co-productions which have struggled outside the Middle Kingdom, The Meg’s formula of summer fun, the universality of shark tales and a marketing campaign that promised a good time on a movie that does not take itself too seriously delivered on a global level. (As Anthony has pointed out, profitability is still to be assessed on the expensive proposition.)
The Jon Turtletaub-directed popcorn flick was No. 1 in 28 of its opening markets. In Europe, it’s comping well ahead of titles like Rampage, Geostorm, London Has Fallen and Into The Storm. Likewise in Asia (outside China) it’s tops in nearly all hubs while in Latin America it is the No. 1 movie everywhere it’s been released.
IMAX splashed in with $13.6M on 1,074 screens in 46 markets. In China, the shark hooked $7M on 520.
Mission: Impossible – Fallout meanwhile, dipped just 47% in holdover markets overseas with a cume that is now $275.6M offshore for $438M global. The international number is 19% ahead of Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation. The Meg took a little nibble out of the Tom Cruise smash in overlap markets, but it’s still dominating in majors like France, Germany, Australia and Japan where the shark has not yet surfaced.
Speaking of Japan, moviegoers are still doing the dino dance there as Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom has climbed to $58.2M, up 8% in its 5th frame.
Elsewhere, Incredibles 2 is thisclose to $500M international and has overtaken Toy Story 3 to become the biggest-ever Pixar release worldwide.
Breakdowns on the films above and more are being updated below.