'Ford v Ferrari' trounces 'Charlie's Angels' to dominate the weekend box office with a strong $31 million opening

Fox‘Ford v Ferrari.’
  • Disney/Fox’s “Ford v Ferrari” won the domestic box office this weekend with an estimated $US31 million.
  • It’s the second-straight weekend that an original movie topped the box office.
  • Sony’s “Charlie’s Angels” was a major disappointment as it only took in $US8.6 million (the studio projected it to earn between $US12 million and $US13 million).
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Original movies have been showing their might of late at the multiplex.

Last weekend Lionsgate’s “Midway” surprised the industry by winning the domestic box office (but with a $US18 million opening it was the lowest November release champ in 20 years), and now the Fox/Disney release, “Ford v Ferrari,” took home the top prize this weekend.

The movie brought in an estimated $US31 million, a strong start for a $US90 million race car movie. The global take for the movie was $US52 million.

Following a 92% score on Rotten Tomatoes and award season hype surrounding its lead actors (Matt Damon and Christian Bale), director (James Mangold), and its beautiful cinematography (lensed by Phedon Papamichael), “Ford v Ferrari” just needed the grown-up audience to show up. And they certainly did.

Friday’s $US10.9 million take was fuelled by males over 25, who made up close to half of the audience on the movie’s first full day in release, according to Deadline.

It’s a much-needed win for Fox, which made the movie before the Disney/Fox merger and is one of the few from the big studio to find success since Disney took the wheel (indie shingle, Fox Searchlight, has had several successes since the merger).

When Business Insider spoke to Mangold before he premiered the movie at the Toronto International Film Festival, he said Disney was fully backing the movie and added that he believes it’s a type of title Disney wants Fox to release more of.

“It’s the kind of movie Disney hasn’t made, so it does expand their portfolio,” Mangold said.

If this is the formula by Disney going forward for Fox – big budget movies catered to the 30-and-over crowd – it also potentially makes the studio a more consistent contender for Oscar glory, which historically is a rarity outside of its animation output.

The other big release of the weekend, Sony’s “Charlie’s Angels,” had a disastrous opening.

Trying to relaunch the franchise following its successful transition from TV to movies in the early 2000s thanks to stars Drew Barrymore, Lucy Lu, and Cameron Diaz, this new “Angels” enlisted the talents of Kristen Stewart, Naomi Scott, and Ella Balinska (with Elizabeth Banks directing). But it did not excite anyone as the movie only brought in $US8.6 million. Sony was projecting a $US12 million to $US13 million opening on over 3,400 screens.

It seems “Angels” suffered the same fate as “Terminator: Dark Fate.” Audiences can sniff out a tired franchise from a mile away and with so many content options to choose from these days they are going to ignore anything they don’t have to spend money on.

Disney will certainly repeat as champs next weekend as it opens the much anticipated “Frozen II.”

Midway lionsgateLionsgate‘Midway.’

Box office highlights:

  • “Midway” came in second place with a $US8.7 million take. It now has a global total of over $US53 million.
  • Warner Bros./New Line’s “The Good Liar” had a weak opening, only taking in $US5.6 million domestically on 2,400 screens.
  • “Joker” is the first R-rated movie to cross $US1 billion at the worldwide box office, as it hit the milestone on Friday.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.