LOS ANGELES -- Despite five new wide releases opening this weekend, only one managed to make an impression at the box office.
Universal's R-rated comedy "Good Boys" opened in first place with $21 million, surpassing analyst projections of $12 million to $15 million, according to estimates from measurement firm Comscore.
The film's result makes it the best original comedy opening of the year as well as the first R-rated comedy to open at No. 1 since the studio released "The Boss" in 2016. Universal now has the two biggest original comedy openings this year with "Good Boys" and "Little."
Produced by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, "Good Boys" stars Jacob Tremblay, Keith L. Williams and Brady Noon as three precocious 12-year-old boys getting ready for their first kissing party. Directed by Gene Stupnitsky in his feature directorial debut, it was well-received with a B-plus CinemaScore and an 80% "fresh" rating on review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes.
"Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg flawlessly depict an awkward phase that everyone can relate to with not only outrageous laughs but quite a bit of heart as well," said Jim Orr, Universal's distribution chief. "Further, when you have Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, the creative minds behind some of the most iconic comedies of the last decade, there's no doubt people will be talking about this one for a long time."
Universal has distributed the biggest original comedy openings of the last three years with this film, including last year's "Blockers" ($20.5 million) and "Night School" ($27.2 million) and 2017's surprise hit "Girls Trip" ($31.2 million). The latter two films were the highest-grossing domestic comedies of their respective years. "Universal has a rich history of successful comedies," said Orr. "To be able to add 'Good Boys' to our canon is amazing."
The studio now matches Disney with six films that have opened at No. 1 this year: "Good Boys," "Glass," "Us," "How to Train Your Dragon 3," "Secret Life of Pets 2" and "Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw."
In second place, Universal's "Hobbs & Shaw" added $14.1 million in its third weekend. Globally, the film has reached $437 million in worldwide receipts.
At No. 3, Disney's "The Lion King" added $11.9 million in its fifth weekend. The film has earned $1.43 billion to date worldwide.
In fourth place, Sony's "The Angry Birds Movie 2" earned $10.5 million over the weekend after opening on Tuesday for a cumulative $16.2 million. It was well-received with a B-plus CinemaScore and a 76% "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes, but fell well short of its predecessor's $38.2 million opening in May 2016.
Rounding out the top five, "Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark" added $10.1 million in its second weekend.
At No. 6, Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures' "47 Meters Down: Uncaged" opened below expectations of $11 million to $14 million with $9 million. It earned many negative reviews with a 50% "rotten" rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a C-plus CinemaScore. Its predecessor, "47 Meters Down," opened with $11 million in 2017 on its way to $44 million.
In seventh place, Paramount's "Dora and the Lost City of Gold" added $8.5 million in its second weekend. At No. 8, Sony's "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" added $7.6 million in its fourth weekend.
In ninth place, "Blinded by the Light" opened with $4.5 million. Directed by Gurinder Chadha ("Bend It Like Beckham"), the film follows a Pakistani teenager in Britain who turns to the music of Bruce Springsteen to cope with racial and economic turmoil. Despite the poor box office, it received an A-minus CinemaScore and a 90% "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
At No. 10, Fox's "The Art of Racing in the Rain" added $4.4 million in its second weekend.
Opening out of the top 10, "Where'd You Go, Bernadette" made $3.4 million.
Directed by Richard Linklater, the film stars Cate Blanchett as an agoraphobic mother who suddenly goes missing on the eve of a family vacation to Antarctica. It earned tepid reviews with a B CinemaScore and a 43% "rotten" rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
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