The 355’s glamorous spies were no competition to the cinema’s reigning web slingshot. Spider-Man: No Way HomeBox office dominance continued into its fourth weekend in theaters, adding another $33 million, according to studio estimates on Sunday. With $668.8 million in North American ticket sales to date, Spider-Man: No Way Home is now the sixth highest-grossing release of all time domestically. Globally, it ranks eighth with $1.5 billion and counting.
The only major new movie this weekend was Universal’s The 355, an original spy thriller starring Jessica Chastain, Lupita Nyong’o, Diane Kruger, and Penelope Cruz, which debuted in third place with $4.8 million from 3,145 North American theaters. Directed by Simon Kingberg, reviews for the film about a global coalition of female spies are less than great: it has a 27% on Rotten Tomatoes.
But audience ratings were more enthusiastic, especially from women, and about a third of those in attendance this weekend were over the age of 45 — a target audience that hasn’t gone to cinemas much during the pandemic. With a holiday weekend approaching, Jim Orr, Universal’s head of domestic distribution, said, “We think we’re going to have a nice runway.”
The 355 came after the animated Sing 2, also distributed by Universal, which grossed an estimated $12 million in theaters on its third weekend, bringing the worldwide total to $190.8 million.
Of ommicron cases rise, Hollywood has cautiously entered 2022. January’s biggest new release, the Spider-Man spin-off Morbius, recently moved to April.
“There is a bit of uncertainty in the market because of the ommicron variant,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Comscore. “Studios want to protect their crown jewels and give them the best chance of success in the cinema. Such a delay shows that they are not giving up on the theaters. But studios are very aware of this market and what the challenges can be.”
And while January is now destined to be quiet at the box office, Dergarabedian said Spider-Man has been a “beacon of hope” for the industry.
“It shows that audiences want to go back to the cinema,” he said. “We could have a very strong box office year, but time will tell.”
Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday in U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Comscore. The final domestic figures will be announced on Monday.
1. Spider-Man: No Way Home, $33 million.
2. Sing 2, $12 million.
3. The 355, $4.8 million.
4. The King’s Man, $3.4 million.
5. American Underdog, $2.4 million.
6. The Matrix Resurrections, $1.9 million.
7. West Side Story, $1.4 million.
8. Ghostbusters: Afterlife, $1.1 million.
9. Licorice Pizza, $1 Million.
10. House of Gucci, $632,348.