Hollywood (July 26, 2017): The cinematic gamble of Christopher Nolan’s latest – an original, period war movie with sparse dialogue and little in the way of traditional hero tropes – is paying off so far. Dunkirk bested expectations to kick off at the American box office with $50.5 million, according to studio estimates.
As for the film’s subject, the second world war has been commercially unproven in recent years, and Churchill, released in June, was a box-office fizzle. On the other hand, it had the advantage of novelty: cinemagoers can hardly complain about a surfeit of films on the conflict.
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Far outstripping the competition (even movies playing on more screens), the new film is a success for Nolan, even if it’s not his best opening (that would be a little film called The Dark Knight Rises). In a savvy alternative programming move, Girls Trip also did well, earning $30.3 million and plenty of warm reviews. With a $19 million budget, this one looks set to be profitable and will likely spawn sequels.
In returning challenger terms, Spider-Man: Homecoming was the victor, slipping just one place to third and adding $22 million. War For The Planet Of The Apes, meanwhile, fell from first place to fourth, nabbing $20 million in the process. Homecoming, which had a week’s head start is well ahead in overall earnings, making $251 million to Apes’ $97 million.
Despicable Me 3 tumbled from third to sixth on $12 million, while Baby Driver added $6 million in seventh. The Big Sick continued to perform, dropping a couple of places to eighth on $5 million.
Wonder Woman has finally begun to fall down the charts a little, but with the top spot among the year’s superhero releases to date, that’s not a problem. The movie earned $4.6 million and passed $389 million domestically this weekend.