The Russo Brothers Captain America: Civil War cruised to the top of the box office for the second weekend in a row.  Facing no new direct competition, the Marvel/Disney tentpole slipped a decent (for a huge blockbuster) 59% as it earned an estimated $72.5 million, driving its domestic total to $295.8 million.  In spite of Civil War’s solid hold, the continued strong performance of The Jungle Book, and a better than expected debut for Jodie Foster’s Money Monster, the total box office was down nearly 30% from the same weekend last year when Pitch Perfect 2 opened with $69.2 million followed by Mad Max: Fury Road with $45.5 million and Age of Ultron in its third weekend with $38.9 million.

Ten days in, Captain America: Civil War is performing pretty much like a Marvel summer movie kick-off film should.  Civil War’s second weekend drop is very similar to those experienced by Avengers: Age of Ultron (-59.4%) and Iron Man 3 (-58.4%), and the film’s 2nd frame total is the eighth best all time (not adjusted for inflation).  It will be interesting to see if Civil War’s excellent reviews and the buzz created by the first screen appearance of the Black Panther (and the new screen Spider-Man) will translate into a slightly better showing at the box office over the long run, but don’t expect Civil War to challenge the original Avengers massive $623 million domestic take--something over $400 million (like Age of Ultron’s $459 million total) is much more likely, which would put Deadpool’s best-in-2016 total of $362 million in definite jeopardy.

Overseas Civil War grossed another $156 million outside of North America for a total of $645 million and a global haul of $941 million, well ahead of the now dead-in-the water Batman v. Superman ($870 million), which dropped out of the top ten this week.  While Civil War won’t face direct superhero movie competition next weekend (that comes on the 27th with the release of X-Men: Apocalypse), there will be three new potentially successful challengers at the box office including the well-reviewed (88% positive on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes) The Nice Guys, a battling buddies cop drama featuring Ryan Gosling and Russel Crowe written and directed by Shane Black (Lethal Weapon, Iron Man 3), the raunchy R-rated comedy Neighbors 2, which not only has the success of the first Neighbors film going for it, it actually managed to get a 66% positive rating on RT (no mean feat for a comedy sequel), plus the Angry Birds movie.

Jon Favreau’s live-action adaptation of The Jungle Book continued its impressive run, finishing second in its fifth weekend of release as it earned $17.8 million and brought its domestic total to $311.8 million.  It’s only a matter of time before The Jungle Book outdistances Disney’s 2010 adaptation of Alice in Wonderland ($334 million), and it’s doing even better overseas where it has earned $516.3 million for a worldwide total of $828 million.  Soon The Jungle Book will brachiate past Batman v. Superman on both the domestic and foreign fronts, giving Disney three out of the top five releases so far in 2016.  By the way, Civil War’s current gross brings the overall total of all 13 Marvel Studios films to $10 billion—Warner Bros. has a long way to go before the modern DC Extended Universe can match that total.

Weekend Box Office (Studio Estimates): May 13-15, 2016


Weekend Gross



Total Gross



Captain America: Civil War







The Jungle Book







Money Monster







The Darkness







Mother's Day














The Huntsman: Winter's War














Barbershop: The Next Cut







The Boss






Jodie Foster’s Money Monster in which George Clooney plays a motor-mouthed TV financial pundit (ala Jim Kramer) is perhaps the only adult-skewing drama with more than just art house ambitions that is launching this month, and the film did a bit better than expected with a $15 million opening with an OK $4,832 per-venue average.  This sort of adult drama is becoming something of an endangered species at the box office (though the same type of dramatic material is flourishing on cable and Netflix), so it’s good news that Money Monster managed an opening on par with that of Steven Spielberg’s Bridge of Spies, but the real test for this $28 million drama will come in the weeks ahead.

The micro-budgeted horror film The Darkness, which cost about $4 million to produce and which opened in just 1,755 theaters earned $5.2 million, a strong performance considering the film has a rare 0% positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and received only a lousy “C” CinemaScore from genre movie fans.  Expect The Darkness to fade fast.

The ensemble comedy Mother’s Day, which got a big holiday bounce last weekend, dropped 70.6%, as it earned $3.3 million, bringing its domestic total to $28.8 million.  Expect this seasonal film to drop out of the top ten quickly.

The same cannot be said for the number six film, Zootopia, which has been in the top ten for 11 straight weekends.  This weekend the animated feature earned $2.8 million bringing the film’s domestic total to $331.8 million, as it moved past Batman v. Superman to take the #2 spot among films released so far in 2016.  Worldwide Zootopia has earned $969.8 million, which means it still has a shot at passing The Lion King ($987) million and gaining second place on the list of “original” films that were not based on a property from another medium, but created especially for the screen.

The rest of the top ten, The Huntsman: Winter’s War (-34.7%), Keanu (-42.2%), Barbershop: The Next Cut (-40.2%), and The Boss (-38.3%) all suffered small percentage losses, but their totals last weekend were so small that the small percentage declines really don’t matter--the bottom half of the top ten was very weak in this session.  Keanu, in particular, deserved a better fate, which it may find in the aftermarket.

Be sure and check back here next week when the well-reviewed cop buddy movie The Nice Guys opens along with the R-rated comedy sequel Neighbors 2, and the Angry Birds movie, which is produced by David Meisel, the money man behind the rise of Marvel Studios (see “The Secret Origin of Marvel Studios”).