Box office: Batman v Superman breaks records, Deadpool becomes the top-grossing R-rated movie ever worldwide

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Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice may have been worse than Man of Steel in the eyes of audiences and critics alike (Man of Steel got 56% at Rotten Tomatoes and an A- at CinemaScore, while Batman v Superman got 29% and a mere B), but the new film did a lot better than its predecessor at the box office this week.

The superhero sequel cum movie-universe jump-starter will earn an estimated $170.1 million between Thursday and Sunday nights, which easily beats the $116.6 million that Man of Steel opened to in 2013. The film also had the best opening of any Batman movie to date (previous champ: The Dark Knight Rises, 2012, $160.9 million).

Batman v Superman currently has the second-best non-summer opening ever, behind last year’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and the sixth-best opening overall, also behind Jurassic World, Iron Man 3 and the two Avengers films. The previous biggest opening in March belonged to The Hunger Games ($152.5 million in 2012), and the previous Easter record belonged to Furious 7 ($147.2 million in April 2015).

Meanwhile, Zootopia earned $23.1 million in its fourth week, thereby bringing its North American total to $240.5 million. The film is now Disney’s third-biggest non-Pixar animated hit, behind 1994’s The Lion King and 2013’s Frozen — and it is way ahead of where either of those films were in their fourth weekends.

Third place this week went to My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, which opened to an estimated $18.1 million. The original film opened in limited release in 2002 and became one of the biggest sleeper hits of all time, grossing $241.4 million; the sequel had a standard wide release and will probably be a much smaller success.

Fourth place is a tie between Miracles from Heaven and The Divergent Series: Allegiant, which earned $9.5 million each in their second weeks.

In the case of Allegiant, that figure represents a steep 67.3% drop from its already disappointing opening last week; in the case of Miracles from Heaven, it represents a drop of only 35.9%, which is on par with the second-weekend drops for its fellow “faith-based” films Risen (42.3%) and Heaven Is for Real (36.3%).

Miracles from Heaven has currently grossed $34.1 million overall.

In other news, Deadpool earned another $5 million for seventh place and a domestic cume of $349.5 million — so it’s now just a few days away from passing its fellow R-rated film American Sniper ($350.1 million). The only other R-rated film ahead of it in North America is The Passion of the Christ ($370.8 million).

Deadpool also passed The Matrix Reloaded this week to become the top-grossing R-rated movie ever worldwide. The film has earned $396.5 million overseas — which is still behind The Matrix Reloaded ($460.6 million) and Fifty Shades of Grey ($404.8 million) — but when you combine it with the domestic gross, the film’s global cume comes to $746 million, which beats The Matrix Reloaded’s $742.1 million.

Finally, about the two Bible movies playing in theatres this Easter weekend:

Risen grossed $900,000 and narrowly missed the top ten, landing at #11 instead. This brings the film’s North American total up to $36 million after six weeks. Risen has earned another $3 million overseas for a global total of $39 million.

The Young Messiah, on the other hand, grossed only $274,000, thereby raising its domestic total to $6.3 million. The film ranked #17 in its third week in North American theatres and has earned another $426,449 overseas.

Risen now ranks eighth among “faith-based” films in terms of total domestic gross…

  • 2004 — The Passion of the Christ — $370.8 million
  • 2014 — Heaven Is for Real — $91.4 million
  • 2015 — War Room — $67.8 million
  • 2014 — God’s Not Dead — $60.8 million
  • 2014 — Son of God — $59.7 million
  • 2011 — Soul Surfer — $43.9 million
  • 2006 — The Nativity Story — $37.6 million
  • 2016 — Risen — $36 million
  • 2011 — Courageous — $34.5 million
  • 2016 — Miracles from Heaven — $34.1 million
  • 2008 — Fireproof — $33.5 million
  • 2014 — When the Game Stands Tall — $30.1 million
  • 2002 — Jonah: A VeggieTales Movie — $25.6 million
  • 2015 — Woodlawn — $14.4 million
  • 2014 — Left Behind — $14 million

…and it still ranks eighth among Bible-themed films released in the past 40 years:

  • 2004 — The Passion of the Christ — $370.8 million
  • 1998 — The Prince of Egypt — $101.4 million
  • 2014 — Noah — $101.2 million
  • 2014 — Exodus: Gods and Kings — $65 million
  • 2014 — Son of God — $59.7 million
  • 2009 — Year One — $43.3 million
  • 2006 — The Nativity Story — $37.6 million
  • 2016 — Risen — $36 million
  • 1981 — History of the World, Part I — $31.7 million
  • 2016 — Hail, Caesar! — $30.1 million
  • 2002 — Jonah: A VeggieTales Movie — $25.6 million
  • 1979 — Monty Python’s Life of Brian — $20 million
  • 1980 — Wholly Moses! — $14.2 million
  • 2006 — One Night with the King — $13.4 million
  • 1988 — The Last Temptation of Christ — $8.4 million
  • 2016 — The Young Messiah — $6.3 million
  • 1985 — King David — $5.1 million
  • 2003 — The Gospel of John — $4.1 million

Next week brings us the last major “faith-based” film of the season: God’s Not Dead 2.

March 28 update: The final numbers are in, and Batman v Superman made $166.1 million in its first weekend — which is the seventh-best opening of all time, behind the five films mentioned earlier and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2.

It also turns out that Risen snuck back into the top ten after all, with $935,025.

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