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Suicide Squad retains US top spot as Sausage Party takes huge $33.6 million

Sausage Party

Story by Jack Foley

SUPERHERO movie Suicide Squad has held onto the top spot at the US box office but the real winner of the weekend was Seth Rogen’s R-rated animated comedy Sausage Party, which came second with a massive $33.6 million.

That meant that the food-related comedy beat expectations to secure the best R-rated opening in at least a year.

In contrast, Disney’s live action remake of its 1977 animated film Pete’s Dragon struggled to excite audiences despite good reviews, taking $21 million-$22 million despite being the first new family movie to open in the US since July.

Overall, the weekend shook out with a victory of sorts for David Ayer’s much-maligned superhero film, which dropped 67% in its second weekend with $43.8 million. That still marks one of the biggest declines for a studio superhero movie, as well as for Warner Bros and DC – almost an exact repeat of the Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice drop off [of 69%].

However, Suicide Squad has now earned $465.4 million worldwide, including $222.9 million in the US, as well as $242.5 million overseas, where it took in another $58.7 million over the weekend.

In contrast, Sausage Party, which cost just $19 million to make, took $33.6 million, a massive return for Sony Pictures and its co-creators Rogen and Evan Goldberg (who have previously combined for the films This Is The End and The Interview).

Sausage Party focuses on a brave sausage who is determined to find out what happens to hot dogs once they leave the grocery store shelf.

Commenting on its success, Sony worldwide president of distribution and marketing Josh Greenstein said: “It shows that if you are really original and take risks, it can pay off really well in today’s marketplace. The humour was smart and elevated.”

Further down the US top five, at three, Disney’s Pete’s Dragon may have under-performed with its $22-21 million but it did earn critical acclaim and strong audience approval from those who turned out to see it, meaning that it could yet become a hit over time. What’s more, the film only cost $65 million, which is a relatively small outlay for a Disney title.

Commenting on the performance of the David Lowery-directed film, Disney distribution chief Dave Hollis said: “I know we are usually in more of the home-run tent-pole business, but this is a solid single, maybe a double pending the 75% of overseas business to come. If anything, this result gives us a business case to consider other library titles that warrant the singles/doubles treatment.”

The weekend’s third new entry, the Meryl Streep starring Florence Foster Jenkins, got off to a relatively subdued start, earning $6.9 million, which was about level with last summer’s Streep film, Ricki and the Flash.

The film, directed by Stephen Frears and co-starring Hugh Grant, is based on the real-life story of a New York heiress who bought a career as an opera star only to be ridiculed.

Back in the top five, Jason Bourne placed fourth with $13.6 million in its third weekend for a US total of $126.8 million.

While raunchy female comedy Bad Moms rounded out the top five with $11.5 million for a US total of $71.5 million.

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