Audiences Gobble Up ‘The Menu’ Thursday Night With $1M+; ‘Wakanda Forever’ Ends First Week With $220M+

EXCLUSIVE: The Searchlight absurdist genre comedy got off to a promising start with $1M+ last night in previews, we hear. That number is up there with recent comps as Barbarian which did $850K on its Thursday night before a $10.5M opening, and The Northman, another Anya Taylor Joy movie, which posted $1.35M before a $12.2M start. The opening weekend estimate for the Mark Mylod directed movie which also stars Ralph Fiennes, Nicholas Hoult and John Leguizamo among others is around $8M. If this movie gets to $10M, it would be a nice oasis for counterprogramming in the face of Disney and Marvel Studios’ mammoth Black Panther: Wakanda Forever which is expected to do a second weekend in the $70M-range. That preview number for The Menu includes some cash from Wednesday and previews that began at 5PM yesterday. The Menu is 91% certified fresh on Rotten Tomatoes and currently has a good audience score of 83%.

Wakanda Forever posted a $7.5M Thursday, -8% from Wednesday for a first week of $220.7M. The pic crossed $400M worldwide on Wednesday.

Universal’s movie about the New York Times reporters who exposed movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, She Said, isn’t expected to do much this weekend, in the low single digits. Previews from 1,600 theatres that began at 5PM were only $160K. Remember, despite any low grosses from these arthouse-type films, in the post-pandemic era, their awards season chances won’t be slowed. I mean, some of the big awards contenders don’t even report their box office grosses. She Said is 85% certified fresh critics score on Rotten Tomatoes and has a 92% audience score from the few who’ve seen it.

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