It took the combined star appeal of Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum, their surprise screwball comedy chemistry, and the allure of a treasure hunt in exotic jungle locations to topple The Batman.
The Lost City, a crowd-pleasing action-adventure-comedy, aided by game performances of Daniel Radcliffe and Brad Pitt, bowed at the top with $31 million. Those numbers were considered a record debut for a female-driven release in the COVID era.
Directed by the Nee Brothers – Aaron and Adam – The Lost City stars Sandra as a romance novelist whose hunky book cover model (Channing), and a former Navy SEAL (Brad), attempt to rescue her from a billionaire kidnapper (Daniel).
Box office watchers thought The Batman would keep reigning until Jared Leto’s Morbius arrives on April 1.
Although it has dropped to second place, The Batman still drew $20.5 million, which increased its domestic tally to $332 million so far. That bolsters the record of Robert Pattinson’s first Caped Crusader outing as the second biggest hit of the COVID-19 health crisis period. The champ is Spider-Man: No Way Home, of course.
RRR (Rise! Roar! Revolt!), an Indian Telugu language epic, stunned box office analysts when it landed third. The 1920s-set film, which imagines two Indian revolutionaries, Alluri Sitarama Raju (Ram Charan) and Komaram Bheem (Rama Rao), in an epic superhero story, collected $9.5 million. Those figures qualified the S.S. Rajamouli-directed patriotic saga to claim having one of the biggest North American bows ever for an Indian film.
Tom Holland’s other big blockbuster during the pandemic, Uncharted, has legs and continues to hang in fourth place with $5 million. A treasure hunt movie like The Lost City, Uncharted has earned a total of $133.5 million so far in the United States and Canada.
The anime film, director Sunghoo Park’s Jujutsu Kaisen O, fell to fifth place after picking up $4.58 million. But screenwriter Hiroshi Seko’s movie adaptation of the popular “Jujutsu Kaisen” manga series has already taken a total of $27.7 million, which augurs well for the anime genre in the domestic market.
Comprising the rest of the top ten were, in order, X ($2.23 million), Ti West’s slasher film; Dog ($2.1 million), which makes Channing join Tom in having two movies in the top ten box office chart; Spider-Man: No Way Home ($2 million); Sing 2 ($1.28 million), the highest-grossing animated film in the pandemic era; and Infinite Storm ($751,296), a drama adventure featuring Naomi Watts, Sophie Okonedo, Denis O’Hare and Billy Howle.
Internationally, RRR broke debut numbers for a local release in India. News reports cite unconfirmed opening stats of $46 million. If those figures stay after being verified, RRR is the worldwide box office chart leader.
The Batman stays solid in offshore territories, grabbing $25 million in more than 70 markets. The acclaimed Marvel Cinematic Universe movie has now collected overseas and global revenues of $340.9 million and $672.9 million, respectively. The top countries for Matt Reeves’ film include Brazil, Mexico, France, and Australia.
In China, Moonfall, the action/adventure/sci-fi starring Halle Berry, Patrick Wilson, and John Bradley, debuted at number one with $9.7 million. The world’s biggest film market, still reeling from a COVID-19 spike which shuttered many theaters, has released two other recent Hollywood films: The Batman ($17.9 million so far), followed by Uncharted ($13.6 million overall).