Jordan Peele’s ‘Nope’ Opens To $44M, As Original IP Breaks Through At Box Office – Sunday Update

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3rd Update, Sunday AM: Nopedespite its B CinemaScore and 79% PostTrak, did not exactly fall apart between Friday and Saturday. If you back out those $6.4M previews out of Friday’s $19.59M, that means the Jordan Peele pic’s first day was $13.19M, and with Saturday at $13.95M, that’s a 6% rise. All of this results in a $44M opening.

While not the 17% rise that Us got over its Friday to Saturday (sans previews), Nope didn’t crater.

While not Us, it’s a respectable result for an original movie, and Universal has shown a talent to make and support those types of movies where some other motion picture studios fall flat. Again, the start for Nope is higher than late summer 2019’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood ($41M), also a piece of original IP, and higher than Warner Bros.’ Elvis ($31.2M), another adult counterprogramming title this summer.

All films this weekend grossed an estimated $125.1M, which is 37% ahead of weekend 29 a year ago. However, as we expected, it’s 53% below the same frame in 2019, which saw all titles make $263.9M, led by Disney’s Lion King. Still, there’s also another win for Universal this weekend, as six of their movies controlled 56% of the weekend box office.

Nope is the fifth Universal horror movie during the Covid era after Black Phone, Halloween Kills, Candyman and Forever Purge. The pic is the second top R-rated opening during Covid, after Halloween Kills ($49.4M). Said Universal Domestic Distribution Boss Jim Orr, “Jordan Peele is a master storyteller and with Nope, another example of his unique voice. He and his incredible cast led by Daniel Kaluuya and Keke Palmer thrilled audiences across North America this weekend with a film that is a true ‘see it on the big screen’ theatrical experience.’”

Nope was more guy-leaning than previous Uni horror pics at 57%, vs. Candyman (53%), Us (50%), and Get Out (48%) and older, meaning more over 25 at 63%, vs. Candyman (58%), Us (61%) and Get Out (59%). The 18-34 through yesterday turned out at 68%. The robust turnout of Black audiences at 33% for Nope is in line with these three other horror pics, as well with Caucasians at 35%, Hispanic and Latino at 20%, and Asian at 8%.

Broken out, guys over 25 repped 38% of the audience (78% score), women 25+ were 25% (75% score), guys under 25 were 20% (77% score) and women under 25 were 17%, but gave Nope its highest grade at 89%. Those 25+ at 25% came with a spouse/partner, while 16% came with date in that age range, and 17% came alone according to PostTrak.

Four hundred Imax screens drove 12% of the gross, or $5.2M, with 800 PLF screens repping another 20% of Nope’s ticket sales.

Top markets were L.A., NY, Dallas, San Francisco, Chicago, Atlanta, Washington D.C., Houston, Philadelphia, and Phoenix.

While distribution sources believe that this movie can get over $100M stateside, the question is with this production cost of $68M (before P&A) whether Nope profits like Peele’s other movies. For those movies opening under $50M, Uni typically sends them to PVOD after 17 days, followed by Peacock thereafter. However, on Nope, I understand it’s PVOD post theatrical 31 days, which is good because the Peele pic and Sony’s Bullet Train are the only marquee offerings during the late summer/early fall dry spell at the box office. Uni has a turnkey windows system, with monetizing opportunities in a subsequent Amazon window, to make bank. However, Peele’s movies only make a third of their global take abroad.

Nope become the first R-Rated movie to receive a push via NBCUniversal’s Symphony program, which markets tentpoles throughout the conglom’s subsidiaries.

Of note, there was the Jupiter’s Claim saloon attraction at Universal Studios Hollywood. That set marks the first time that a Studio Tour attraction opened day and date with a Uni movie release. It will be staged within Universal Studios’ backlot, alongside other big movie sets, such as War of the Worlds, the Psycho house, and Courthouse Square from Back to the Future.

There were also spots running across NBCUni programming, such as American Ninja Warrior, America’s Got Talent, Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Late Night with Seth Meyers, NASCAR and WWE Raw.

In April, there was a custom spot that aired during NBA playoffs with Steph Curry, and in June, a new quartet of spots blanketed the NBA Finals. Similar to the Super Bowl, it was an opportunity to go after a wide guy audience with Nope. The four spots communicated a broad range of emotional tones. Each of the spots can be viewed here: Hell NoRainbowOnce Upon a Time in HaywoodChoices.  

The two official trailers of Nope racked up 120 million global digital views to-date, and were attached to such big pics in theaters as The Batman, Doctor Strange and The Multiverse Of Madness, Top Gun: Maverick, Jurassic World Dominion and Thor: Love and Thunder. 

High-Impact digital takeovers included a Snapchat Grenade, as well as a Meta Blast across Facebook and Instagram and a YouTube Reach Accelerator, Twitter Spotlight Trend, and TikTok Top View.

RelishMix grades the social media reach of Nope at 180M at a 6.4, which is in the range of such horror movies as Us (6.9), A Quiet Place (6), and Halloween Kills (6.3). Social media champs from the cast include Keke Palmer with 28.3M across Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter, along with Steven Yeun, who’s new to social in the last few months for the movie at 4.8M fans, Peele at 3.2M, and Daniel Kaluuya at 548K.

Palmer getting ready for the world premiere drew over 145K views:

@kekepalmer

#NOPE 😍💋

♬ original sound – Keke Palmer

Weekend estimates as of Sunday AM:

1.) Nope (Uni) 3,785 theaters, Fri $19.59M/Sat $13.9M/Sun $10.4M/3-day $44M/Wk 1

2.) Thor: Love and Thunder (Disney) 4,370 (-5) theaters, Fri. $6.4M, Sat $8.9M Sun $6.8M , 3-day $22.1M (-53%)/Total $276.2M /Wk 3

3.) Minions: Rise of Gru (Uni) 3,816 theaters (-298), Fri $5.2M, Sat $6.9M, Sun $5.5M, 3-day $17.7M (-34%), Total: $297.8M/Wk 4

Daisy Edgar-Jones in 'Where the Crawdads Sing'

4.) Where the Crawdads Sings (Sony) 3,650 theaters, Fri $3.1M, Sat $3.9M, Sun $3.2M, 3-day $10.33M (-40%)/Total $38.3M/Wk 2
Great hold here for a female skewing movie during the pandemic, even better than the -45% decline Note Book had, and that was over a July 4th weekend. Industry outlook sees Crawdads’ final domestic B.O. in the $60M range.

5.) Top Gun: Maverick (Par) 3,160 (-132) theaters, Fri $2.7M Sat $4.1M Sun $3.2M , 3-day $10M (-19%), Total $635.5M/Wk 9

6.) Elvis (WB) 3,105 (-200) theaters, Fri $1.8M, Sat $2.55M, Sun $1.9M, 3-day $6.3M (-21%) Total $118.3M/Wk 5

7.) Paws of Fury (Par) 3,481 +6) theaters, Fri $1.1M, Sat $1.5M Sun $1.2M, 3-day $3.87M (-39%)/Total $13.7M/Wk 2

8.)  The Black Phone (Uni) 2,055 (-222) theaters, Fri $1.07M , Sat $1.36M, Sun $1M, 3-day $3.45M (-36%)/Total $78.5M/Wk 5

9.) Jurassic World Dominion (Uni) 2,165 (-495) theaters, Fri $870K, Sat $1.2M, Sun $860K, 3-day $2.96M (-43%), Total $365.5M/Wk 7

10.) Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris (Foc) 1,001 (+21) theatres, Fri $410K, Sat $540K, Sun $400K, 3-day $1.35M (-31%)/Total $4.65M/Wk 2

2ND UPDATE, Saturday AM: Nope‘s box office figures haven’t changed that dramatically. In fact, Universal is calling the Jordan Peele movie slightly lower, with a Friday of $19.5 million and a $44.5 million opening. The pic received a “B” CinemaScore and 79% Comscore/Screen Engine PostTrak exits, on par with Peele’s previous film, Us.

I think many (involved with the pic and in the industry) were hoping for at least $50M. But this type of start isn’t to be complained about, specifically for an original movie.

As mentioned, the pic is the longest of Peele’s movies, and winces from the media have been that the pic is uneven, and doesn’t deliver on the level of Get Out and Us — both of which had endings that kept moviegoers buzzing. It happens with auteur filmmakers when they’re on a hot streak; not every movie is a home run. But again, we shouldn’t be complaining about a mid-$40M start. Hopefully, this R-rated horror sci-fi movie isn’t more frontloaded than many are already projecting.

Turnout here was 58% guys, and a massive 70% with the moviegoing demo of 18-34. Us saw a more even split between men and women at 50-50, and an audience where men and women over 25 showed up at 31% each. Diversity polls as 35% Caucasian, a huge 32% Black moviegoers, and 21% Latino and Hispanic and 12% Asian/other (very similar to Us). Nope played best on the coasts, particularly the West, with nine of the top 10 theaters coming from New York City nd L.A. Imax and PLFs are driving 35% of ticket sales so far.

Box office firm EntTelligence reports that Nope has had 1.4M admissions so far, off an average ticket price of $13.21. Huge turnout post-8 p.m. (it is a horror movie), with 31%. The majority of the audience came between 5-8 p.m. at 43%.

‘Nope’ Review: Jordan Peele Reteams With Daniel Kaluuya For Sci-Fi/Horror Mashup, But Keke Palmer Steals The Show

Here’s how the weekend looks:

1.) Nope (Uni) 3,785 theaters, Fri $19.5M, 3-day $44.5M/Wk 1

2.) Thor: Love and Thunder (Disney) 4,370 (-5) theaters, Fri. $6.4M (-54%), , 3-day $21.2M (-54%)/Total $275.3M /Wk 3

3.) Minions: Rise of Gru (Uni) 3,816 theaters (-298), Fri $5.1M (-37%),  3-day $16.8M (-37%), Total: $296.9M/Wk 4

4.) Where the Crawdads Sings (Sony) 3,650 theaters, Fri $3.1M (-57%),3-day $9.77M (-43%)/Total $37.7M/Wk 2

5.) Top Gun: Maverick (Par) 3,160 (-132) theaters, Fri $2.7M (-21%), 3-day $9.45M (-23%), Total $635M/Wk 9

6.) Elvis (WB) 3,105 (-200) theaters, Fri $1.8M (-21%), 3-day $6.1M (-24%) Total $118.1M/Wk 5

7.) Paws of Fury (Par) 3,481 +6) theaters, Fri $1.1M (-54%), 3-day $3.8M (-39%)/Total $13.7M/Wk 2

8.)  The Black Phone (Uni) 2,055 (-222) theaters, Fri $1.05M (-36%), 3-day $3.4M (-36%)/Total $78.5M/Wk 5

9.) Jurassic World Dominion (Uni) 2,165 (-495) theaters, Fri $840K (-43%), 3-day $2.85M (-45%), Total $365.4M/Wk 7

10.) Mrs. Harris Goes to Pari(Foc) 1,001 (+21) theatres, Fri $410K (-42%),  3-day $1.34M (-31%)/Total $4.6M/Wk 2

UPDATED, Friday midday: Universal’s Nope, its R-rated third teaming with filmmaker Jordan Peele, is looking at a $20 million first Friday, including last night’s $6.4M previews, on its way to a $45M start in U.S. and Canada at 3,785 theaters.

That’s the best domestic debut for an original screenplay since Peele’s own Us ($71.1M), on its way to upset even the three-day of Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, which debuted to $41M in pre-pandemic July 2019. Still, it’s noteworthy for original work in a franchise-heavy summer: Other movies aimed at adults in the fall will require the loud wattage of positive reviews out of the fall film festival circuit to cross over and find audiences. Some studios are already positioning such movies like Bros and The Woman King for such traction.

We’ll see if more people say “yes” to Nope; tracking spotted a $50M opening, though the lower than the 90% percentile reviews of Peele’s other pics could be curbing business.

‘Nope’ Review: Jordan Peele Reteams With Daniel Kaluuya For Sci-Fi/Horror Mashup, But Keke Palmer Steals The Show

Social media analytics company RelishMix counted a social media universe for Nope close to 180M across Facebook, Twitter YouTube Instagram and TikTok — outpacing Us, which opened with an SMU at 111.3M; Halloween Kills at 107.8M; and the first A Quiet Place at 99.1M. The campaign for Nope was jump-started with a Super Bowl spot that clocked close to 22M views in the 24 hours following the game, strong for the only horror title alongside tentpoles Doctor Strange 2 at 93.1M views and Jurassic World Dominion at 86.8M.

As far as the online chatter for Nope, RelishMix says, “Convo attempts to connect the dots of the puzzle from trailers and interviews into a coherent string for UFOs mixed into a range of genres. Some are positively intrigued with others who argue in threads that the premise is over-stretched — while racial mentions are also frivolously thrown around and ignored as ignorance. Call-outs declare Peele the next ‘Stephen King’ or ‘M. Night’ — with level of expectations from his comic levels of creative experimentation. ‘Nope, yup, nope, yup’ references are endless on social and in the press along with other appreciation that the trailers do not spoil the journey. Fans understand from materials, that they’ll experience a vast range in Keke Palmer’s character and they also know that they are going to see multi-dimensional performances from Daniel Kaluuya and this ensemble. Plus, non-horror fans are excited to see the next generation of cinema continue to unfold.”

In second at the domestic box office this weekend, Disney/Marvel’s Thor: Love & Thunder looks to do $5.7M in its third Friday at 4,370 theaters, off 58% from a week ago for an estimated weekend between $19M-20M, and running total of $274.5M.

Universal/Illumination’s Minions: The Rise of Gru at 3,816 is seeing $5.1M in its fourth Friday, -38% from a week ago, for a three-day of $16.6M and a running total of $296.7M.

Sony’s Where the Crawdads Sing at 3,650 locations is counting between $2.6M-$3M and a second weekend between $8.6M-$10M, -41% on the high end, for a running total of $38M.

Paramount’s Top Gun: Maverick booked at 3,160 theaters in its ninth weekend is seeing a $2.5M Friday and $8.85M three-day total, -28%, for a running cume by Sunday of $635.4M.

The Melrose Ave. lot’s Paws of Fury at 3,481 theaters counts a $1M Friday for a second weekend of $3.34M, -47%, and a 10-day total of $13.2M.

PREVIOUSLY, Friday, 7:33 a.m.: Jordan Peele’s third feature as director, Nope, grossed $6.4 million on Thursday night from 3,250 theaters that began screenings at 4 p.m.

That’s a good start for a Peele movie, just 14% off from the $7.4M his last horror pic, Us, made in previews in March 2019. That pic posted a $71.1M opening, the best start for an R-rated original horror movie at the domestic box office.

Nope‘s previews are well ahead of Get Out‘s $1.8M, which was a movie that audiences discovered in its opening weekend and flocked to, sending its opening to $33.3M.

Nope is Peele’s longest movie to date at 2 hours and 15 minutes. The movie’s critical scores on Rotten Tomatoes are, so far, the lowest of his three films, but the numbers are pretty good at 81% next to Us‘ 93% Certified fresh and the Oscar-nominated Get Out‘s at 98% certified fresh. The audience score on Rotten Tomatoes for Nope currently sits at 78% next to Us‘ 60% and Get Out‘s 86%

Nope is expected to make around $50M. It may come in less than that given the runtime here for a horror movie, and should the critical scores ease. The film was made for $68M in the Santa Clarita Valley in Southern California before P&A.

Disney/Marvel’s Thor: Love and Thunder led Thursday among regular films in release with an estimated $3.8M at 4,375 theaters, off 15% from Wednesday for a running two-week total of $254M, 13% ahead of Thor: Ragnarok versus the same time frame.

Universal/Illumination’s Minions: Rise of Gru did $3.6M at 4,114 theaters, -4% from Wednesday, for a running three-week total of $280.1M, 1.8% ahead of 2015’s Minions over the same period. Minions ended its stateside run at $336M.

Sony’s Where the Crawdads Sing posted a $2.3M Thursday at 3,650 theaters, -8% from Wednesday, for a first-week total of $28M. That’s 31% ahead of the $21.3M first-week take of summer weepy The Notebook which ultimately finaled at $81M at the domestic box office.

Paramount/Skydance’s Top Gun: Maverick at 3,292 grossed $1.6M yesterday, -4% from Wednesday, for a running eight-week total of $625.5M.

Warner Bros’ Elvis saw a fourth Thursday of $1.2M, -10% from Wednesday, for a running total of $112M.

Paramount’s animated family movie Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank posted $777K yesterday, +1.3%, for a first-week total of $9.8M.

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