“Bullet Train,” a Sony Corp. thriller starring Brad Pitt, overcame little competition to top the North American box office this weekend.
The movie made $30.1 million across more than 4,300 domestic locations, according to an estimate from Comscore Inc. released Sunday. That’s in line with the $27 million to $36 million forecast from Box Office Pro and the $30 million estimate from Sony.
Combined ticket sales from the top 10 movies, which make up the bulk of the weekend market, continued to slide, declining about 6.4% to $87.9 million from a week earlier. Adam Aron, chief executive officer of AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc., said in an earnings call Thursday that business will be slow until October due to a “dearth of big new movie titles” in August and September.
“Bullet Train” follows Ladybug, an assassin played by Pitt, as he carries out a mission on a high-speed train. The movie has received mixed reviews, with a 53% critical approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
The movie cost $90 million to make, according to Sony.
Men ages 18 to 45 likely gave ticket sales a boost, according to Box Office Pro’s chief analyst Shawn Robbins. Studios have had a relatively easy time luring male audiences back to theaters after pandemic-related closures with films including “Spider-Man: No Way Home” and “Top Gun: Maverick.” Movies aimed at kids have had a more mixed sales record during the past two years, while older women have mostly skipped releases marketed toward them.
“Easter Sunday,” a Universal Pictures comedy that was the only other new movie to open in wide release this weekend, sold $5.25 million in domestic tickets, Comscore estimated. Box Office Pro forecast it would make $4 million to $8 million.
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