'John Wick 3' knocks down 'Avengers: Endgame' with $57 million debut
May 19 2019 06:27 PM
John Wick
John Wick

Reuters/Los Angeles

Earth's Mightiest Heroes put up a good fight, but John Wick put an end to the three-week box office reign of ‘Avengers: Endgame.’

Propelled by positive reviews, ‘John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum’ beat expectations with a debut of $57 million from 3,850 North American locations. That was enough to nab the box office crown from ‘Avengers: Endgame,’ Marvel's latest juggernaut that collected $29.4 million during its fourth weekend of release.

‘Parabellum,’ the third installment of the action franchise, opened well above its predecessors 2014's ‘John Wick’ ($14.4 million) and 2017's ‘John Wick: Chapter 2’ ($30.4 million). In Parabellum, Keanu Reeves returns as the titular ex-hitman who finds himself on the run from assassins. Stuntman-turned-director Chad Stahelski helmed the movie, written by series-creator Derek Kolstad. Halle Berry and Laurence Fisburne also star.

‘John Wick 3’ was a much-needed win for Lionsgate. The studio suffered a string of flops with its big-budget reboot of ‘Robin Hood’ with Taron Egerton, a ‘Hellboy’ remake, and Liam Neeson thriller ‘Cold Pursuit.’

‘Avengers: Endgame,’ which slid to second place on domestic box office charts, has now earned $771 million in North America, passing ‘Avatar’ and its $761 million haul to become the second-highest grossing movie at the domestic box office behind ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ ($937 million). It's still the No. 2 biggest title worldwide, following just ‘Avatar’ with $2.78 billion.

‘John Wick 3’ opened alongside Universal and Amblin's ‘A Dog's Journey’ and Warner Bros. and MGM's ‘The Sun Is Also a Star.’

‘A Dog's Journey’ arrived below expectations, launching at No. 4 with $8 million from 3,200 venues. It's pacing significantly below 2017's ‘A Dog's Purpose,’ the original film in the saga about a canine's adventure to find meaning. That movie debuted with $18 million and went on to earn $64 million at the domestic box office. It became a big hit with international audiences, grossing $140 million overseas.

This weekend's final new wide release, ‘The Sun Is Also a Star,’ collapsed with a disastrous $2.6 million bow from 2,073 theaters. The YA romance drama, based on Nicola Yoon's novel, received mixed reviews. It earned a lackluster B- CinemaScore, as well as a 51% on Rotten Tomatoes. ‘Grown-ish’ actress Yara Shahidi stars as a brainy student who forms a relationship with a charming exchange student (‘Riverdale's’ Charles Melton), as her family faces deportation.

Ticket sales are have fallen around 10% behind last year, according to Comscore. Hollywood is banking on some big blockbusters, as well as a few surprise hits, to boost revenues during the busy summer movie season.

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