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Angelina Jolie’s “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” is heading for an opening weekend of about $35 million at 3,790 North American locations — significantly below forecasts, early estimates showed on Friday.
The fantasy sequel should still win the domestic weekend box office handily, denying Joaquin Phoenix’s “Joker” a third consecutive victory. “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” will also top the launch of another sequel, Sony’s “Zombieland: Double Tap,” which is coming in above expectations at about $28 million in a battle for second with “Joker.”
Disney - Maleficent - Mistress - Evil - Weekend
Disney’s “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” had been forecast to launch around $45 million this weekend. The original “Maleficent” debuted with $69 million at the domestic box office in 2014 and went on to become a box office smash, earning more than $750 million globally from a $180 million budget.
The cast includes returnees Elle Fanning, Sam Riley, Imelda Staunton, Juno Temple and Lesley Manville, and newcomers Michelle Pfeiffer, Ed Skrein and Chiwetel Ejiofor. Joachim Ronning, who co-directed “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales,” helmed “Maleficent 2.” The story centers on Maleficent and her goddaughter Aurora (played by Fanning) and the impact of Aurora’s upcoming marriage.
Maleficent - Mistress - Evil - Markets - Weekend
“Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” is also opening in all major international markets this weekend.
“Zombieland: Double Tap” showed decent drawing power, making $2.9 million on Thursday night and easily besting “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil’s” $2.3 million. The raunchy “Zombieland: Double Tap” is opening at 3,450 domestic locations. It’s the first major studio comedy since “Good Boys” bowed in mid-August and wound up as 2019’s top-grossing live-action comedy with $82 million.
The original “Zombieland” debuted...
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