AceShowbiz - Even Brad Pitt's star power failed to deliver an impressive opening for "Bullet Train". The action comedy film from "Deadpool" helmer David Leitch has landed at No. 1 on North American box office with a lackluster debut.
The stylized "John Wick"-ian romp collected an estimated $30.1 million on its first weekend against its reported budget of $85.9-90 million. Internationally, it brought in approximately $32.4 million for a projected $62.5 million worldwide.
"A big film like this with lot of expectations should have had stronger debut," says Jeff Bock, senior media analyst with Exhibitor Relations. "That said, there's not a lot of competition in August, so 'Bullet Train' should have a good window to make its mark in the coming weeks."
The problem with "Bullet Train" is that critics were not into it. The movie scored a mediocre 54% approval rating on review-aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, with many reviewers faulting the movie for being overly derivative. Moviegoers responded better to the film though, with audiences polled by CinemaScore giving the film an average grade of "B+" on an A+ to F scale, while PostTrak gave the film an 82% overall positive score, with 63% saying they would definitely recommend it.
"Bullet Train" is the last big-budget, major studio film this summer. There will be months of drought in blockbuster movies before superhero movies, including "Black Adam" and "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever", debut in theaters.
"We need to manage expectations," Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for ComScore, says in anticipation of this. "The next three months aren't going to be like the previous three months. It's going to be a long time before we get another blockbuster."
Back to this week's box office, Universal and Amblin's "Easter Sunday" is the weekend's other major release. The comedy, starring Jo Koy as a Filipino-American man who returns home to celebrate Easter with his bickering and loving family, debuts at No. 8 with a mediocre opening of approximately $5.2 million.
Elsewhere in the top five, "DC League of Super-Pets" steps down one place to the runner-up spot with an estimated $11.2 million. Jordan Peele's third feature film and latest horror flick "Nope" falls another place to No. 3 with approximately $8.5 million.
Meanwhile, "Top Gun: Maverick" reached a milestone as it has now surpassed "Titanic" as the seventh-biggest film ever at the domestic box office. With additional $7 million on its 11th weekend, the Tom Cruise-starrer has now earned $662 million in ticket sales while placing sixth on this week's chart.
Top 10 of North America Box Office (Aug. 05-07, 2022):