Family pic Puss in Boots: The Last Wish took its seat at the Christmas table on Wednesday with an opening-day gross of $3.2 million at the domestic box office, which is being impacted by bad weather across the country.
The sequel to the 2011 film Puss in Boots, a spin-off of the Shrek franchise, came in No. 2 as Avatar: The Way of Water easily held at No. 1 with $14.3 million Tuesday.
From Disney and 20th Century, James Cameron’s Avatar 2 finished the day with a domestic total of $182.9 million. The film has been doing big business this week, and scored the second-best Wednesday of 2022. Overseas, the juggernaut earned another $39.5 million for a foreign tally of $426.8 million and $609.7 million globally.
The Way of Water is widely expected to dominate the Christmas corridor overall, while Puss in Boots 2, from DreamWorks and Universal, hopes to lure families. Portending good word of mouth, the film earned an A CinemaScore.
Heading into its debut, tracking suggested The Last Wish could claw its way to $30 million to $35 million for the six-day holiday (Wednesday-Monday), but what are being called a historic series of storms could dampen moviegoing during what’s traditionally a huge corridor for theaters.
Overseas, Puss In Boots: The Last Wish has already opened in 25 International markets to-date and has grossed nearly $14 million. It opens in an additional 28 markets this weekend, including China, Mexico, Spain and Germany.
Also on Wednesday, Darren Aronofsky’s specialty darling The Whale, starring Brendan Fraser, expanded into 603 theaters. The film placed No. 5 with $682,596 for an early domestic total of $1.3 million.
On Thursday, this year’s relatively small parade of Christmas movies continues as Paramount’s star-studded Babylon and TriStar’s Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance With Somebody host Thursday night previews before opening everywhere Friday.