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Box office: ‘The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard’ wins the weekend in its debut; ‘A Quiet Place Part II’ drops to second place

“The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard” nabbed the top spot on box office charts, debuting with $11.6 million from 3,331 U.S. venues over the weekend.

The Lionsgate movie, a sequel to the 2017 action comedy “The Hitman’s Bodyguard,” opened in theaters on Wednesday and has collected $17 million to date. However, the film cost nearly $70 million to produce and could face challenges to get out of the red.

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Starring Salma Hayek, Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson, “The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard” is one of the rare post-vaccine era movies to play exclusively in theaters. Opening weekend crowds were mostly older men, with 55% of ticket buyers identifying as male and 66% over the age of 25.

As the only new nationwide release, the poorly reviewed “The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard” didn’t have much competition to claim No. 1 in North America. Falling not far behind, Paramount’s “A Quiet Place Part II” slid to second place with $9.4 million in ticket sales, representing a mere 22% drop from the weekend prior. After four weeks in theaters, the film -- directed by John Krasinski and featuring Emily Blunt -- has generated a strong $125 million to date.

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Ryan Reynolds, de izquierda a derecha, Salma Hayek y Samuel L. Jackson, en una escena de "The Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard" en una imagen proporcionada por Lionsgate.
Ryan Reynolds, de izquierda a derecha, Salma Hayek y Samuel L. Jackson, en una escena de "The Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard" en una imagen proporcionada por Lionsgate. (David Appleby/AP)

Elsewhere on box office charts, “In the Heights,” director Jon M. Chu’s adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hit Broadway musical, failed to sustain crowds in its second weekend of release. The acclaimed film fell to the No. 6 spot with $4.3 million in revenues, a brutal 62% decline from its inaugural outing. “In the Heights,” which is currently playing on HBO Max, has amassed $19.8 million on the big screen to date. At this rate, the $55 million-budgeted movie will struggle to reach profitability.

In third place, Sony’s family film “Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway” collected $6.1 million in its sophomore frame, bringing its domestic tally to $20.3 million through Sunday. The film has done notably better business overseas, with ticket sales hovering at $70.5 million.

The Warner Bros. horror movie “The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It” and Disney’s “101 Dalmatians” prequel “Cruella” will duke it out for fourth and fifth place once final figures are tallied on Monday. According to Sunday estimates, both films brought in $5.1 million over the weekend. The former, which is available on HBO Max, has pulled in $53.5 million at the U.S. box office. “Cruella is also available on Disney Plus for a premium $30 rental fee, brought in $5.1 million from 3,110 screens. The Emma Stone-led film has made $64.7 million in the U.S. and $95.2 million overseas.

In a box office milestone, “Godzilla vs. Kong” became the second COVID-era release to cross the $100 million mark at the domestic box office. It took the monster mashup over a month and a half to surpass that milestone. Overseas, the movie has taken in $342 million for a global haul of $442 million.

Meanwhile, indie films without blockbuster-level promotional efforts haven’t been attracting notable audiences. Among limited releases, Edgar Wright’s music documentary “The Sparks Brothers,” from Focus Features, premiered in 534 locations and brought in $265,000 -- translating to a tepid $489 per location. The similarly well-reviewed Roadside Attractions doc “Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go For It” pulled in $75,715 from 227 screens for a weak $334 per-screen average.

As the box office attempts to rebound from a tough 18-month period, Universal’s “Fast and Furious” sequel “F9” is expected to provide a much-needed shot in the arm to theater operators. Already, the high-octane tentpole is nearing the $300 million mark internationally with ticket sales currently at $292 million.

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