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Venom 2 On Track For $70M+ Weekend After Second Best Friday Of the Pandemic

Venom: Let There Be Carnage had a fantastic Friday opening, bringing in $37.3 million, which is barely below Black Widow‘s $39.5M Friday, which is a pandemic best and led to an $80.4M weekend that remains tops for the year. The original Venom grossed $32.5M on its Friday, which resulted in an $80.3M opening weekend.

So does that mean Venom 2 could deliver the best opening weekend of the year? It’s absolutely a possibility. Sony is officially projecting a $71M opening weekend, which is once again an example of them low-balling their numbers. However, if they’re right, that would still top F9‘s $70M start from June and represent the third best start of 2020/2021. Venom 2 is showing slight signs of front-loading (not uncommon for a buzzy sequel), but since it is a theatrical exclusive it should hold a good bit better than Black Widow. I’d say expect an opening between $77M and $82M. It all depends how Saturday goes.

The good news here is that Venom 2 received a pretty dang decent B+ from CinemaScore, which is the same score Venom was given by audiences back in 2018. Critics have also been kinder, as Let There Be Carnage has a 59% on Rotten Tomatoes, where the first picture had a quite abysmal 30%. 86% of verified audiences on RT also like the sequel. All of this bodes well for the film, as the fans who liked the first are once again having a good time. In addition, the movie also features one of the most buzz worthy credit scenes in quite some time (if you check it out this weekend, I highly recommend you stay for the mid credit scene and don’t let anyone spoil it for you).

In quick news outside Venom 2, The Addams Family 2 took in $5.5M on Friday, which is pretty good for a film that is also available to rent for $20. The animated sequel is on track for a $15.5M opening weekend, which would be the second best family opening of the year, behind Boss Baby 2: Family Business. That movie was also available on Peacock simultaneously. Addams Family 2 was always destined to open lower that its predecessors $30.3M debut. The last film benefited from a curiosity factor due to the brand name and beloved characters voiced by big stars (Oscar Isaac, Charlize Theron, Chloe Grace Moretz).

However, the film wasn’t exactly adored by everyone, as critics gave the first film a 45% on RT, while audiences have it at 69%. You may be saying that kids probably liked it just fine, and that’s true, but parents pay the bills and they don’t take their kids to just anything. Those that have large families would save a lot of money just renting the flick for $19.99, and those parents that don’t even want to watch the movie wouldn’t have to. Addams Family 2 received a B CinemaScore from opening day audiences, and should be just fine with this decent start.

Our last big new opener was The Many Saints of Newark, which took in a $2.1M Friday. That’s not bad considering it’s a prequel to an HBO show and it’s available for free on HBO Max. That only encourages long time fans to watch the film exactly as they’ve always watched The Sopranos family: right in their living rooms. The movie should take in between $5.5M and $7M, and represents another example of the HBO Max simultaneous release strategy handcuffing Warner Bros films. This film would have greatly benefited from being an exclusive as a way to distinguish itself from the show. Now many of those curious to check it out will do so on the app they already have. The mob flick has a rather good 74% from critics on RT but a middling C+ CinemaScore from opening day audiences. This indicates “meh” word of mouth and even more people staying home to watch on their TV at their own pace. This is overall a quite decent start with those factors in mind.

This weekend is a big one, and depending what Venom 2 does, it could end up being the biggest single weekend for all movies domestically of the year, topping the weekend Black Widow opened in July. Check back tomorrow to see where estimates end up.

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