NEW YORK • Hollywood had a bumpy weekend.
In its first three days of release, DreamWorks Animation's high-stakes Kung Fu Panda 3 may have left money on the table at home in search of riches abroad.
The Finest Hours, yet another ocean disaster movie, failed to attract an initial audience big enough to justify its cost. And tumbleweeds blew through theatres playing Jane Got A Gun, produced by and starring Natalie Portman.
Kung Fu Panda 3 took in about US$41 million (S$58 million) at North American theatres, a sturdy result, especially for a sequel to a sequel.
Even though the movie was No. 1 at the box office, that total marked a big decline for the series.
Kung Fu Panda 2 collected about US$50 million in initial ticket sales in 2011, after adjusting for inflation and the original arrived to US$66 million in 2008.
One explanation: DreamWorks and its distribution partner, 20th Century Fox, chose an unusual January release date for the third instalment - the other two arrived in the summer - to take advantage of a prime release window in China, where the New Year holiday is beginning.
Still, Kung Fu Panda 3, which cost at least US$140 million to make, beat Leonardo DiCaprio's The Revenant to second place, while Star Wars: The Force Awakens was at No. 3. The Finest Hours, which cost Walt Disney Studios about US$80 million to make, only managed US$10.3 million in ticket sales in fourth place. It stars Chris Pine and Casey Affleck in a rescue off the coast of Cape Cod.
Fifty Shades Of Black (Open Road), a spoof that cost about US$5 million to make, took in about US$6.2 million. And Jane Got A Gun (the Weinstein Co.), which suffered production difficulties and cost US$25 million to make, collected US$908,000.
NEW YORK TIMES, BLOOMBERG