The unstoppable juggernaut that is “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” is expected to add another $80 million to its total over the weekend, based on Friday’s ticket sales. That would be a drop of just 45% from last weekend’s three-day total of $146 million, which is particularly impressive since mammoth opening weekends are typically a feature of front-loaded franchise movies, which are followed by a sharp drop-off in subsequent weeks. Instead, the brothers Mario seem to be enjoying the best of both worlds: a huge opening in the typical range of a Marvel Studios movie, with the stamina of kid-oriented animated movies like recent sleeper hit “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish.”
To recap, “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” has already smashed through a bunch of box office records. It had the biggest ever opening weekend for a video game movie, and within a week had already become the biggest video game movie of all time. Per Deadline, the film is expected to gross an estimated $659 million by the end of this weekend, with $318 million of that coming from international markets. It’s already the highest-grossing movie of the year, both domestically and worldwide, and has set a high target to beat for the tentpoles still to come this year.
“The Super Mario Bros. Movie” received mixed reviews from critics, with a Rotten Tomatoes score of 58 percent, but it has an “A” CinemaScore from audience exit polling — indicative of a crowd-pleaser. It certainly doesn’t hurt to have one of the most recognizable characters in the world on the posters, but coupled with the success of “The Last Wish,” things are looking very positive for animated movies.
A final word on that note: this weekend also saw the U.S. release of Makoto Shinkai’s “Suzume,” which is expected to gross a respectable $4.7 million to $5 million across 2,170 screens — though that’s just a cherry on top of the $256.1 million it has already made in its home country of Japan.