Box Office: ‘Despicable Me 4’ Suiting Up to $120 Million Five-Day Debut, ‘MaXXXine’ Scores $3.2 Million Opening Day

The Minions are going bananas for the holidays, with “Despicable Me 4” projecting a five-day opening of $120 million for the Fourth of July weekend. Playing in 4,428 locations, the sixth installment in Illumination and Universal’s animated series took in an additional $27 million on Friday.

It’s another triumph for the reliably commercial franchise, albeit notably pacing behind the previous entry “Minions: The Rise of Gru.” Bolstered by the viral trend “#Gentleminions,” involving young adults dressing in formal wear to attend screenings, “Rise of Gru” scored the biggest Independence Day weekend opening of all-time in 2022, with $123 million domestic over a four-day holiday window.

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“Despicable Me 4” will still land one of the biggest Friday-to-Sunday grosses of the year, projecting $72.4 million over the three-day frame. That’d be the fourth-highest domestic opening of 2024, behind “Inside Out 2” ($154 million), “Dune: Part Two” ($82 million) and “Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire” ($80 million).

That’s a fantastic start for “Despicable Me 4,” which cost $100 million to produce — a fraction of the $200 million budgets that are routinely attached to animated features from Illumination’s rivals like Disney and Pixar. And with a glowing “A” grade through audience survey firm Cinema Score, it’s clear that franchise fans feel that this entry lives up to previous ones. The Minions are crowdpleasers and they’ll be sticking around theaters for the rest of the summer.

Also opening this weekend, rivals are projecting A24’s horror entry “MaXXXine” will earn about $8 million across the three-day frame and Wednesday previews. That’s a big step up from the debuts of director Ti West and star Mia Goth’s previous horror collaborations, “X” ($4.2 million) and “Pearl” ($3.1 million). Both of those features have gained a following since bowing in 2022 and that’s coming into play with the box office bump for “MaXXXine.” Reviews lean positive for the ’80s-period piece slasher, which sees Goth joined by a starry ensemble including Elizabeth Debicki, Lily Collins, Halsey, Michelle Monaghan, Giancarlo Esposito and Kevin Bacon.

Meanwhile, Angel Studios is back at the box office with the debut of “Sound of Hope: The Story of Possum Trout,” a drama about a Texas minister and his church’s efforts in the foster care system. A year ago, the distributor was the runaway king of the box office for the Fourth of July with the child-trafficking thriller “Sound of Freedom.” Rivals expect some much more modest figures for “Possum Trout” though, projecting $7 million over its first four days from 2,200 locations.

Pixar’s “Inside Out 2” is still going strong in second place at the box office, despite its animated rival “Despicable Me 4” dominating the charts. The Disney release passed the $500 million domestic milestone on the Fourth and it added $10.6 million more on Friday. The animated sequel is expected to drop less than 50% this weekend, showing some superlative holding power among the summer competition.

“A Quiet Place: Day One” is tiptoeing into third place, projecting $21.3 million for the three-day frame. Paramount’s horror prequel will surge past $90 million domestic on Sunday, with the $100 million milestone coming up fast sometime over the next few days.

Sony and Columbia’s hit “Bad Boys: Ride or Die” rounds out the top five, projecting another $7 million for the three-day frame. The Will Smith and Martin Lawrence action sequel has now passed $170 million domestic.

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