‘Onward’ Tops Coronavirus-Affected Weekend Box Office with a Mere $10.5 Million

     March 15, 2020

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Global concerns over the spread of the coronavirus have begun making a noticeable impact on box office sales domestic and international. Even amidst theater chains like AMC Theaters and Regal Cinemas either scaling back audience capacities at theaters, those who are still heading to the movies seem to be choosing uplifting, family-friendly fare — which might explain why Pixar’s Onward was the surprise winner this weekend with $10.5 million earned.

A $10.5 million domestic weekend is not the ideal outcome for a Pixar movie currently ending its sophomore weekend in theaters. However, Onward has been beset with a slower-than-normal earning pace both here in the U.S. and at the international box office. Combined with growing coronavirus concerns and a 73% dip from last weekend, $10.5 million domestic earned from 4,310 locations is, frankly, a surprise. Overseas, Onward earned $6.8 million from 47 territories, bringing the film’s global total to just $101.7 million in two weeks.

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Image via Lionsgate

Lionsgate release I Still Believe, a faith-fueled drama based on the true story which inspired Christian singer Jeremy Camp‘s hit “I Still Believe”, rose to #2 at the box office race this weekend, making $9.5 million here in the United States. The film, which stars KJ Apa (Riverdale) and Britt Robertson (Tomorrowland) as a couple who fight through the highs and lows of young love and a troubling cancer diagnosis. Opening in 3,250 domestic theaters, receiving an “A” CinemaScore from audiences and holding 99% audience score on Rotten TomatoesI Still Believe also averaged $2,923 per theater.

Coming in a very close second is fellow new release Bloodshot. Decidedly very different in tone from this weekend’s box office winner, Bloodshot is adapted from the Valiant Comics series of the same name and stars Vin Diesel, Guy PearceEiza Gonzalez, and Sam Heughan. Diesel plays Ray Garrison, a soldier who is brought back to life with special nanotechnology and tasked with a special mission. In another weekend slot, the Sony Pictures release might have stood a better chance with sales. However, an already-slow March box office combined with movie theater capacity restrictions and, in some cases, closures, has resulted in the $45 million feature bringing in $9.3 million domestic. Opening in 2,861 theaters nationwide, Bloodshot averaged $3,251 per theater. The film also nabbed a “B” CinemaScore and a 78% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes.

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Image via Universal Pictures

Biting political satire The Hunt ended up in fifth place this weekend, with $5.3 million domestic earned. The Universal feature stars Betty Gilpin (GLOW) and Hilary Swank on opposite sides of a modern-day take on short story “The Most Dangerous Game”, where liberal “elites” hunt “deplorables” and one woman ends up fighting back in a big way. The movie, directed by Craig Zobel and written by Damon Lindelof and Nick Cuse, was delayed back in 2019 following backlash over the perceived message from the film’s first trailer. Now, opening during what will likely be the first of many extraordinarily slow box office weekends, The Hunt is averaging $1,757 per theater from 3,028 locations total.

Other movies in this weekend’s top 10 have been hit with week-to-week dips in the 60-70% range — a very noticeable percentage, even in this current moviegoing climate. Universal/Blumhouse feature The Invisible Man is holding on at #4, weathering a 60% week-to-week drop with $6 million earned domestically, bringing its three-week total up to $64.4 million. Aside from Onward‘s killer 73% drop, #9 pic Emma starring Anya Taylor-Joy had one of the highest dips at 71% and added $1.4 million domestic to its total current $10 million total.

For more, you can read up on our reviews of Bloodshot and The Hunt.

Rank Title Weekend Total
1. Onward $10,532,000 $60,290,687
2. I Still Believe $9,500,000 $9,500,000
3. Bloodshot $9,300,000 $9,300,000
4. The Invisible Man $6,000,000 $64,419,685
5. The Hunt $5,320,000 $5,320,000
6. Sonic the Hedgehog $2,575,000 $145,806,328
7. The Way Back $2,415,000 $13,435,873
8. The Call of the Wild $2,241,000 $62,106,911
9. Emma. $1,370,000 $10,005,975
10. Bad Boys for Life $1,100,000 $204,292,401

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