BO Report: ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3’ lands on top

(L-R): Zoe Saldana as Gamora and Chris Pratt as Peter Quill/Star-Lord in Marvel Studios' 'Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3'. (Photo by Jessica Miglio. © 2022 MARVEL.)

Disney/Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 scored the best opening for the franchise last weekend, and the second highest opening of the year so far behind The Super Mario Bros. Movie.

The last instalment in the franchise gathered $9.5 million from 873 screens across the weekend. With Wednesday’s debut factored in, the blockbuster stands at $10.5 million overall. The original film, released in 2014, opened to $6.5 million, while Vol. 2 opened at $8.6 million.

For IMAX Melbourne, Vol. 3 helped deliver its strongest opening weekend of the year, with IMAX Corp globally taking 9 per cent of the film’s total earnings.

“The 2023 slate continues to cater to the IMAX experience and Guardians sets up an exciting couple of months that are loaded with IMAX-friendly content including Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, The Flash, Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning and, of course, Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer,” Jeremy Fee, acting general manager, IMAX Melbourne tells IF.

Village Cinemas national programming manager Geoff Chard tells IF Guardians was tracking very similarly for it to Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.

“Whilst the Wednesday night previews were slightly under BP: WF it actually performed better over the opening 4 days. Victoria was helped slightly by the poor weather down here, but we could see in the pre-sales that more people were interested in watching the film over the weekend rather than the Wednesday night previews.

“The film seems to be meeting people’s expectations with reasonable WOM, so we’re hopeful that the film can meet (or surpass) BP: WF’s lifetime result of $29.6m nationally.”

Pro-rata, Australia was slightly behind North America where Guardians gathered some $US114 million, with the global pot sitting at $US282 million.

While Guardians performed was the strongest title “by far” last weekend, Hayden Orpheum Picture Palace GM Alex Temesvari observes that “otherwise regular film box office is quiet.” Indeed, Guardians collected a 70 per cent market share nationally last weekend.

The only other new release to crack the top 10 was Mindblowing Films’ musical drama Jodi, directed by Amberdeep Singh. Set in the Punjab in the 1980s, it weaves together the tale of two talented and passionate artists on a journey to redefine the Punjabi folk music scene. 

The rom-com collected $292,393 from just 63 screens, which at $4,641 has the second highest screen average in the top 20 after Guardians.

Overall, Numero data puts the top 20 titles up 64 per cent on the previous weekend at $13.4 million.

Guardians put a dint in the performance of both Universal’s The Super Mario Bros Movie and Studiocanal’s John Wick: Chapter 4. Mario dropped 51 per cent in its fifth frame to $1.4 million, advancing to $48.5 million, while Chapter 4 dropped 53 per cent to earn $435,297 in its seventh, moving to $24 million.

Warner Bros.’ Evil Dead Rise now stands at $3 million after adding $387,321 in its third weekend, while stablemate Air took home $364,522 in its fifth, moving to $8.5 million. Paramount’s Dungeons & Dragons: Honour Among Thieves is at $11.3 million after six weekends, adding another $160,536.

Last weekend’s no. 3, S J Cinemas’ Tamil-language epic Ponniyin Selvan: Part II, took a large tumble in its sophomore weekend, dipping 83 per cent to $153,407, bringing its tally to $1.2 million.

Also in its second weekend, Paramount’s starry sports comedy 80 for Brady took a 53 per cent dive, earning $127,903 to move to $580,098. Stablemate Mafia Mamma rounded out the top 10, now standing at $2.3 million after a fourth weekend result of $95,412.

Of the Australian films in release, Madman’s Bob Brown documentary The Giants continues to be the best performer, adding $43,334 in its third frame to move to $344,232.

The film’s performance is in part to successful event screenings. For instance, it will have a sell-out Q&A tonight at the Orpheum, with Brown in attendance.

“The main attraction for us at the moment is our special event programming,” Temesvari tells IF. “We’ve sold out all 700 seats for a Q&A tonight on The Giants documentary even though we opted to open the film three weeks after everyone else.”

The Secret Kingdom, directed by Matt Drummond and released via Pinnacle Films, is at $68,033 after two weekends, having earned an extra $15,777.

Umbrella Entertainment launched Rolf de Heer’s The Survival of Kindness on 28 screens, which saw it gather $12,939. With previews and festival screenings, it stands at $32,680.

Kismet doco Shackleton: The Greatest Story of Survival is at $307,318 after nine weekends, while Roadshow’s Of An Age is at $319,140 after seven.