‘Lego Batman’ Shows ‘Fifty Shades’ Who’s Darker

By February 12, 2017

It’s Valentine’s Day, so what are moviegoers more interested in? A little sadomasochism with Fifty Shades Darker or the fun adventures of The Lego Batman Movie?

If you said Fifty Shades, you didn’t read the headline.

The Lego Batman Movie grossed $55.6 million on its opening weekend, according to box office estimates from The Numbers, slipping past Fifty Shades, which also had a respectable $46.8 million opening.

Both openings were off from the original films in their respective franchises. The Lego Movie, for example, earned $69.1 million on its February 2014 opening, while Fifty Shades of Grey whipped up $85.2 million a year later.

Still, both films finished on top of what is typically a busy February weekend for the box office that also included the premiere of John Wick: Chapter Two, which earned $30 million and third place. That more than doubled the original opening of John Wick in October 2014, when it premiered with $14.4 million and second place behind Ouija.

Even though it didn’t win the weekend, Universal Pictures is getting a solid start to 2017, thanks not just to Fifty Shades but also the film that had been No. 1 the past three weeks – M. Night Shyamalan’s Split. Universal continues to sit on top of all the studios with $300 million, according to The Numbers, while Twentieth Century Fox is trailing with just half those numbers.

Walt Disney Co., which easily won last year’s box office with just under $3 billion domestically, is currently in fourth with $137.4 million, barely edging the struggling Paramount Pictures. However, it’s still very, very early in the year, and there are a lot of movie tickets to be sold.

Split, by the way, fell to fourth place with $9.3 million. Its 24-day total is now $112.3 million.

Paramount’s horror entry last week, Rings, fell hard in its second week, to $5.8 million and seventh place.

A Dog’s Purpose lost just 30 percent of its opening weekend (compared to the more typical 50 percent), but still dug its way to No. 6 with $7.4 million.

The top five movies earned $149.7 million, according to early estimates, down more than 21 percent from a year before when Deadpool debuted with $132.4 million. Overall, the box office for the top five is down nearly 19 percent from this same point last year.

While Lego Batman may have brought in the most money overall, it does appear that – at least by early estimates – the movie that earned the most per theater is KEDi, a Turkish film that shows an ancient city from the perspective of a cat. It opened on a single screen and generated $40,510, compared to the more than $13,600 per screen Lego Batman did.

Can Batman continue to rule the box office? Next weekend’s wide releases are ones that have not received a lot of attention ahead of time. Probably the most prominent of them is Gore Verbinski’s A Cure for Wellness starring Dane DeHaan and Jason Isaacs.

Also opening is Ice Cube’s latest movie, Fist Fight, which also stars Charlie Day, Tracy Morgan and Jillian Bell.

And finally, there’s the American and Chinese co-production The Great Wall that already has earned $218.2 million internationally. It stars Matt Damon, Willem Dafoe and Andy Lau.

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Michael Hinman

Michael Hinman

Managing Editor at GeekNation
Michael began what has become nearly 19 years of entertainment reporting as the founder of SyFy Portal, which would become Airlock Alpha after he sold the SyFy brand to NBC Universal. He's based out of New York City where he is the editor of a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper in the Bronx.