It was the weekend to end all weekends as far as the box office is concerned now thatJoker has more than earned the number one spot. TheTodd Phillips-directed character study following failed comedian Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix) in his downward spiral and subsequent transformation into notorious Gotham criminal Joker broke October box office records with $93.5 million earned.
It’s been a hell of a journey to the top forJoker. Following a near-rapturous reception after its premiere at the 2019 Venice Film Festival, the movie has been met with scrutiny, criticism, and backlash from nearly all angles. Hand-wringing and in the case of the residents of Aurora, Colorado, rightfully so overJoker‘s depiction of violence and cagey-yet-adamant clarifications from both Phillips and Phoenix about whether the film bears any responsibility for the effects seeing that violence may possibly have on audiences also cast a shadow ahead of the movie’s October 4 premiere. Add to this reports of increased security and police presence at theaters in cities including New York City and Los Angeles and it all makes for one of the most compelling (to put it mildly) journeys we’ve seen this year.
Jokerhas been an unstoppable juggernaut since Thursday previews where it began raking in the dough. During previews alone, the movie beatVenom‘s record of $10 million earned domestically by bringing in $13.3 million. Success was seemingly all but guaranteed asJokercontinued to reel in audiences across the nation, busting through predictions in its first weekend total as it averaged $21,376 per theater in the 4,374 theaters it was shown in here in the U.S.
If you really want your mind blown (and why not? You’ve made it this far), consider that theJokerisn’t just a success here but also a massive hit overseas. The movie earned $140.5 million internationally over the course of its first weekend in theaters, reflecting earning from 39 markets including UK, Russia, Italy, Spain, Poland, UAE, Japan, Korea, Indonesia, Brazil, and Australia. Couple all of these facts and figures with a B+ Cinemascore, the proverbial cherry on top, andJokeris truly flying high as we come to the end of this first weekend in October.
Where does that leave the rest of the cinematic offerings? Well, we’ve got a fun range of movies holding it down at the top of the chart this weekend.AbominableandDownton Abbeyare currently sitting in the number two and three spots, respectively.Abominablebrought in an even $12 million in its second weekend, a 41.8% dip in earnings here in the U.S. which brings its total gross up to $38 million.Focus FeaturesDownton Abbeyadded $8 million to its domestic total, which it now sitting at $73.6 million. Meanwhile, STX’sHustlers brought in $6.3 million in its fourth weekend for a current domestic total of $91 million. Add this to its $18.7 million earnings overseas and theJennifer LopezandConstance Wu-led flick made on a $20 million budget has now pocketed $110 million globally.
IT: Chapter Twois holding steady in fifth position with $5.35 million earned over the weekend whileAd Astra($4.5 million domestic)andJudy($4.4 million domestic) hold the respective sixth and seventh box office chart spots. Rounding out the bottom of the chart isRambo: Last Blood with $3.5 million, Bollywood action filmWarbreaking into the mix with $1.6 million, andGood Boyswith $900,000, all of which was earned in domestic theaters.
At this rate, it’s unlikelyJokerwill be nudged out of the top spot in its second weekend despite newcomersGemini ManstarringWill Smith,The Addams Familyanimated movie starringOscar IsaacandCharlize Theron, andJexistarringAdam Devine all making their debuts. But I certainly won’t discount these newbies making forsome fun, new Jokercompetition.
|5.||IT: Chapter Two||$5,355,000||$202,205,157|
|8.||Rambo: Last Blood||$3,550,000||$39,823,895|