‘Ant-Man’ inches past ‘Pixels’ to take first place spot

26 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Ant-Man’ inches past ‘Pixels’ to take first place; ‘Southpaw’ bests ‘Paper Towns’.

LOS ANGELES – “Ant-Man” has claimed first place at the box office for the second weekend in a row, narrowly besting new opener “Pixels.” The Marvel and Disney superhero pic brought in $24.8 million over the weekend, bringing its domestic total to $106.1 million according to Rentrak estimates Sunday. The opening of Adam Sandler comedy “Pixels” is heading for a moderate $25 million opening weekend in the U.S., comfortably ahead of teen romance “Paper Towns,” but trailing superhero holdover “Ant-Man.” According to projections Friday, Disney and Marvel’s “Ant-Man” could notch its second first-place finish.“Pixels,” the video game action comedy starring Adam Sandler, packed a puny punch in its box office debut and Marvel’s superhero saga “Ant-Man” claimed its second consecutive weekend triumph this weekend with an estimated $24.8 million. The film, directed by Peyton Reed and starring Paul Rudd as the titular hero, pulled in an estimated $7.2 million on Friday. “Paper Towns,” an adaptation of the young adult novel by John Green and starring Nat Wolff and Cara Delevigne, grossed an estimated $6.3 million on Friday.

Sony’s “Pixels” is on track for roughly $10 million at 3,723 locations on its opening day, leaving it in line with recent projections in the mid-20s. Meanwhile, the R-rated boxing drama “Southpaw” surpassed expectations, earning $16.5 million out of the gates and beating out the YA adaptation “Paper Towns,” which earned about $12.5 million — a far cry from the $48 million debut of “The Fault in Our Stars” last year.

Directed by Christopher Columbus, “Pixels” portrays an alien invasion of Earth by classic arcade game characters such as Pac-Man, Donkey Kong, Centipede and Space Invaders. “Pixels,” which has been savaged by critics, also stars Kevin James, Peter Dinklage and Josh Gad. Deeds,” “Big Daddy” and “The Waterboy.” Recent efforts like “Blended,” “That’s My Boy” and “Jack and Jill” have all failed to gain traction with moviegoers however. Even audiences gave it a so-so “B” CinemaScore. “Pixels” was aimed at family crowds, the same audience that better-reviewed holdovers “Ant-Man,” “Minions” and Pixar Animation’s “Inside Out” targeted, and that took a toll, too.

Universal’s holdover “Minions” looked likely to finish in third with about $21 million — enough to push the animated comedy past $260 million by the end of the weekend. Insiders said it’s unclear if Thursday night’s tragic theater shootings in Louisiana during a “Trainwreck” screening would hold down business during the weekend. “All of us at Universal Pictures send our heartfelt sympathies to the victims of this senseless tragedy and their families in Louisiana,” the studio said in a statement.

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