UK box office preview: will ‘Maleficent: Mistress Of Evil’ topple ‘Joker’?

Screen | 10/18/2019 | Ben Dalton
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Villains will battle at the UK box office this weekend as Disney sequel Maleficent: Mistress Of Evil looks to topple the Clown Prince of Crime, Joker, from the top spot.

The follow-up to 2014’s Maleficent sees Angelina Jolie return as the titular sorceress as she and her goddaughter Aurora (Elle Fanning) begin to question the complex family ties that bind them.

Title - May - £2 - Previews - Opening

The first title opened to £6.6m in May 2014, although £2.8m of that came from previews and an opening on the Wednesday prior to its first weekend. Its first weekend total was £3.8m.

Joker took an outstanding £9.7m last weekend, bringing it to £30m after just two weekends. Crucially, it held well, with its 22% drop proving the best of any comic book-inspired film of 2019.

Drop - Size - £7 - % - Fall

Another drop of that size would put it at £7.6m; while a 50% fall (a rough benchmark for judging how well a film has performed) would give it £4.9m.

For comparison with the third weekends of other comic book adaptations this year, Alita: Battle Angel fell 39%; Captain Marvel dropped 49%; Shazam! fell 55%; Avengers: Endgame dropped 69%; and Spider-Man: Far From Home fell 47%.

Title - Joker - Character - Christopher - Nolan

Another title to heavily feature the Joker character, Christopher Nolan’s 2008 The Dark Knight, fell 39% on its third weekend, with £4.1m moving it along to a huge final gross of £49.1m.

Joker would need a 60% drop to fall below the first Maleficent’s £3.8m and with its performance to date, awards buzz and enduring ‘water-cooler’ interest, that seems unlikely.

Maleficent - Mistress - Evil - Film - Start

However, it is possible that Maleficent: Mistress Of Evil will outperform the first film’s start. Opening on Friday will boost its weekend takings while Jolie is still one of the biggest stars in the industry, with a strong supporting cast including Fanning, Michelle Pfeiffer, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Screen Stars of Tomorrow Harris Dickinson, Ed Skrein...
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