By Dave McNary
LOS ANGELES, (Variety.com) – Sony’s resilient “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” has returned to the top of the North American box office, leading a modest Super Bowl weekend with $11 million at 3,553 sites.
The session caps a remarkable run for the Dwayne Johnson-Kevin Hart action comedy, which also won the box office on its third, fourth and fifth weekends. “Jumanji” has become the 42nd highest domestic grosser of all time with $352.6 million, less than $500,000 behind Johnson’s “Furious 7” for the 41st spot.
“Jumanji,” which declined just 32 percent, is only the 11th title to top $11 million in its seventh weekend. It’s the lowest total for a first-place film since the second weekend of “The Hitman’s Bodyguard” won the final frame of August.
Fox’s “Maze Runner: The Death Cure,” which won the box office last weekend, finished second with $10.2 million from 3,793 locations. The weekend’s sole opener, Helen Mirren’s horror-thriller “Winchester,” launched in third with $9.3 million at 2,480 venues, topping modest expectations which had been in the $6 million to $8 million range.
Overall domestic business was typically modest for a Super Bowl weekend with $92 million overall, according to comScore, as studios remain reluctant to open major titles during the frenzy surrounding the pro football championship. The lowest recent Super Bowl weekend came in at $86 million in 2014, when the third weekend of “Ride Along” led with $12 million.
The 2018 box office has remained close to even with last year thanks to “Jumanji,” with $1.06 billion through Sunday, down 0.5 percent from last year at the same point.
“‘Jumanji’ gets the MVP box office award for Super Bowl weekend with a stunning late run ascension to the number one spot as ‘Maze Runner’ adds to its total and ‘Winchester’ enjoys a bit of counter programming success amidst a sea of Oscar contenders over what is a typically slow moviegoing weekend,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst with comScore.
“Maze Runner: The Death Cure,” the third and final installment of the “Maze Runner” series, stars Dylan O’Brien as a young man trying to survive in a dystopian universe. It declined by 58 percent from its $24 million opening. The film’s release was delayed for a year due to injuries that O’Brien sustained on the set in 2016.
“Winchester” centers on a real-life house in San Jose, Calif. built by Sarah Winchester (Mirren), the heiress to the Winchester firearms fortune, over 38 years beginning in 1886. The mansion, which stands seven stories tall, contains hundreds of rooms and is meant to be an asylum for vengeful ghosts.
Fox’s seventh weekend of “The Greatest Showman” finished fourth with $7.8 million at 2,588 sites, posting the lowest decline among the top 10 films at 18 percent. The Hugh Jackman musical has turned in an impressive $137.5 million in 45 days.
Entertainment Studios’ Western drama “Hostiles,” starring Christian Bale, followed in fifth with $5.5 million at 2,934 locations, giving it $21.2 million after two weeks in wide release. Fox’s seventh weekend of “The Post” came in sixth with $5.2 million at 2,462 sites for a $67.2 million domestic total.