sony High-speed train, with Brad Pitt, seen $4.6M in Thursday previews that began at 3 p.m. in 3,596 locations. The pic is estimated to fetch around $30 million this weekend as the last big tentpole of the summer before a two-month drought without four quad movies.
Interestingly, although it’s not necessarily a mockup since it was the IP brand, it’s that High-speed train director David Leitch had previews that weren’t that far off from what his fast furious spin off Hobbs & Shaw released in early August 2019, or $5.8 million.
Alongside the late summer Thursday previews, High-speed train is ahead of ThemeThursday ($4M, opening $45.4M) and also last year The Suicide Squad at $4.1 million (though the latter title was day and date on HBO Max and saw a $26.2 million debut).
The critics are sour High-speed train at 53% on Rotten Tomatoes, but audiences like it more at 83% on RT.
Universal/Dreamworks’ Easter Sunday with Jo Koy saw $500,000 in 2,400 theaters which began at 5 p.m. yesterday. Thursday preview comps for Easter Sunday are around that of Marry me (even though it was day and date on Peacock) which was $525,000, and before August 2019 The art of racing in the rain which was $450,000. The family comedy is expected to open at an average figure this weekend. Critics are not fans of Easter Sunday 32% rot on rotten tomatoes.
Universal launched the marketing campaign for Easter Sunday in March, which saw trailer placements ahead of Jo Koy’s sold-out “Funny is Funny” comedy tour to entice his fanbase to see the films in theaters. An interactive QR code was displayed on the screens of his stand-up shows, sending them to the film’s Fandango page. Jo Koy also showed up at CinemaCon in late April leaving exhibitors in stitches and sharing how Steven Spielberg saw universal comedy in stand-up history.
The cinematic campaign also included a 30-second spot in Game 6 of the NBA Finals, a placement in seven TV premieres, including The Bachelorette, Better Call Saul, So You Think You Can Dance, The $100,000 Pyramid and What we do in the shadows. In addition, Easter Sunday sponsored an episode of family quarrel which featured Jo Koy and her real-life family versus Lydia Gaston and her real-life family. High impact digital placements were delivered on Meta (Facebook/Instagram), TikTok Top Feed as well as a digital presence on YouTube, Female Lifestyle and Cinephile sites.
There was a partnership within the AAPI community included a #GoldOpen VIP event which included a screening and Q&A part of Gold House’s Meta Gold Talk series. There was also a comedy showcase hosted by Jo Koy highlighting upcoming AAPI comics and a Rise for Comedy VIP comedy night in partnership with Rideback Ranch that featured over 300 journalists, influencers and talent (including Simu Liu, Awkwafina and Lisa Ling). This event included a panel on Representation in Entertainment hosted by Kathy Lim (Director of Media and Journalism for the McCarthy Foundation), a comedy ensemble including Ronnie Chang, Jimmy O. Yang.
Among the films in regular release, Warner Bros.’ DC League of Super Pets led Thursday and the week with $2.2 million and $33.8 million respectively. Universal Nope was second with a second Thursday take of $1.56M, -26% from Wednesday, and a second week of $27.4M and a total of $87.3M. Uni finished third with Minions: The Rise of Gru with a fifth Thursday of $1.46M, -8% from Wednesday, a fifth week of $17.9M and a cumulative total of $325.8M. Disney/Marvel’s Thor: Love and Thunder was 4th yesterday with a fourth Thursday of $1.3M, -12% from Wednesday and a fourth week of $19.9M for a cumulative total of $306.8M. from Paramount Top Gun: Maverick in its tenth Thursday, it saw $1.17 million, -3%, for a weekly total of $13.5 million and a cumulative total of $654.1 million.