‘Sonic the Hedgehog’ Speeds to #1 with a $57 Million Opening Weekend

     February 16, 2020


Paramount Pictures has a winner on its hands with Sonic the Hedgehog, the movie adaptation of the popular Sega video game of the same name. Parks & Recreation alum Ben Schwartz lends his voice to this wee mammal speedster while Jim Carrey steps into the role of his mad scientist enemy, Robotnik. Oh, and of course, James Marsden is along for the ride as a local sheriff who befriends Sonic and must help him defeat Robotnik before it’s too late. Classic.


Image via Paramount Pictures

Sonic the Hedgehog hit $57 million domestic through Sunday. Since this is a four-day holiday weekend, we’ll have to wait until Tuesday to get the complete picture on Sonic‘s opening weekend. But, for now with $57 million in the bank, Sonic the Hedgehog has officially become the video game adaptation with the highest earning opening weekend, beating Detective Pikachu‘s $53.4 million domestic opening weekend in the process. The Paramount feature opened on 4,167 screens nationwide, averaging $13,679 per screen. Overseas, the movie opened to $43 million across 40 markets, meaning Sonic had a global opening weekend total of more than $100 million. Carrying the bonus of being kid-friendly and PG-rated, Sonic also scooped up an A CinemaScore based on audience response. If our favorite blue speedy boy keeps it up, he and the movie he stars in could end up with somewhere between $65 and $70 million when the President’s Day weekend wraps.

Sonic the Hedgehog was not the only movie opening over this long holiday weekend. In an unusually jam-packed schedule fellow features Fantasy IslandThe Photograph, and Downhill also premiered, each offering something different for moviegoers. At number three is the Sony Pictures/Blumhouse release Fantasy Island, starring Lucy Hale and Michael Peña in a scary update on the popular ’70s TV show. Getting a tepid C- CinemaScore, the new take on Fantasy Island earned $12.4 million domestic over the weekend, averaging $4,454 per screen. Considering it was made on supremely lean reported budget of $7 million, these are solid results for the Blumhouse release. In fourth place is the romantic drama The Photograph, starring Issa Rae and LaKeith Stanfield. Universal’s latest brought in $12.3 million domestic, averaging $4,877 per screen and scoring a very solid B+ CinemaScore.


Image via Searchlight Pictures

As for Downhill, well, this might be the most surprising disappointment of the weekend and ultimately one of the most disappointing openings of 2020 (so far) given its pedigree. The Searchlight Pictures release opened in 10th place this weekend with $4.7 million domestic. Granted, Downhill opened in about half the number of theaters as its fellow new releases — 2,301 screens nationwide — so that may have been a contributing factor to its opening weekend total. However, the feature is also saddled with a brutal D CinemaScore and a 41% on Rotten Tomatoes. What happened?! Despite boasting the star power and box office pull of leads Will Ferrell and Julia Louis-Dreyfus, the film based on the 2014 international comedy Force Majeure seemingly couldn’t stick the landing. Reviews for the U.S. adaptation co-directed and co-written by Nat Faxon (The Descendants) and Jim Rash (Community) come to the overall consensus that parts of the film work better than the whole and side with its source material as the still-superior feature. Yes, Downhill‘s box office fortunes could change if it ups its theater count or catches some strong word-of-mouth buzz. For now, things are going, well, downhill.

Elsewhere in this weekend’s top 10, Birds of Prey is holding on to its number two spot with $17.1 million earned domestic in its second weekend. Overseas, the Warner Bros. film earned $23 million and showed on 14,923 screens across 78 markets. All told, Birds of Prey‘s worldwide total at the end of weekend two is $142.9 million. Also, at number eight is Parasite. Following its stunning performance at the 2020 Oscars, where it won Best Picture among other big awards, the film has expanded across the U.S. and is currently showing on more than 2,000 screens. The Neon feature earned $5.5 million domestic, bringing its stateside total up to $43.2 million.

You can check out the full top 10 weekend box office chart below. For more, check out our Sonic the Hedgehog review plus cast interviews with Ben Schwartz, Jim Carrey, and James Marsden.

Rank Title Weekend Total
1. Sonic the Hedgehog $57,000,000 $57,000,000
2. Birds of Prey $17,115,000 $59,273,302
3. Fantasy Island $12,400,000 $12,400,000
4. The Photograph $12,270,000 $12,270,000
5. Bad Boys For Life $11,305,000 $181,327,306
6. 1917 $8,090,000 $144,414,984
7. Jumanji: The Next Level $5,700,000 $305,716,286
8. Parasite $5,500,500 $43,188,044
9. Dolittle $5,050,000 $70,501,515
10. Downhill $4,671,000 $4,671,000

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