The surprise (and non-consecutive) win highlights the impressive endurance of Joker, which is only the third movie this year, following Universal’s Glass and Disney’s Avengers: Endgame — to secure in first place during three weekends
Put on a happy face: In its fourth weekend in theaters, Warner Bros.’ Joker returned to the top of domestic box office charts, narrowly defeating Disney’s Maleficent: Mistress of Evil.
The two villains had been in a close race for first place, but Sunday estimates show Joker will walk away victorious with $18.9 million in ticket sales. Those rankings could change Monday morning after final tallies are reported since Maleficent 2 is close behind with $18.5 million.
The surprise (and non-consecutive) win highlights the impressive endurance of Joker, which is only the third movie this year — following Universal’s Glass and Disney’s Avengers: Endgame — to secure in first place during three weekends. Joker recently became the most successful R-rated movie in history, collecting $849 million worldwide. Joaquin Phoenix’s gritty take on Batman’s infamous nemesis has generated $277 million in North America and $571 million at the international box office.
Since debuting last No. 1 to a disappointing $36 million, Angelina Jolie’s Maleficent: Mistress of Evil has generated a lackluster $65 million at the domestic box office. The dark fantasy sequel continues to be a bigger player overseas, where it pulled in another $64.3 million for an international haul of $228 million. Globally, the Maleficent follow-up is nearing the $300 million mark.
STX’s horror thriller Countdown had the strongest start among new offerings, placing fifth with $9 million from 2,675 venues. The PG-13 film, about a nurse who downloads an app that predicts when a person is going to die, cost $6.5 million.
Sony’s R-rated action drama Black and Blue launched at No. 6 with $8 million from 2,062 theaters. Directed by Deon Taylor, the $12 million film follows a rookie cop (Naomie Harris) who inadvertently captures the murder of a young drug dealer on her body cam.
Behind-the-scenes turmoil appeared far more interesting than the movie itself for this weekend’s final newcomer, The Current War.
The historical drama arrived in theaters two years after Harvey Weinstein premiered at the 2017 Toronto Film Festival. The Current War was shelved and sold after sexual abuse allegations were leveled against Weinstein and his company shuttered. David Glasser, the former COO of The Weinstein Company, released the film through his 101 Studios banner.
The Current War earned a dismal $2.7 million from 1,022 screens, marking one of the lowest openings for a nationwide release. Directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon, The Current War depicts a tense battle between electricity giants Thomas Edison (Benedict Cumberbatch) and George Westinghouse (Michael Shannon) — who teams up with Nikola Tesla (Nicholas Hoult) — as the men determine whose electrical system will power the modern world.