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World Box Office, Bad Guys Win

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The massive talent of Nicolas Cage and the brute force of the Vikings were no match to criminal animals at the box office.

The Bad Guys, a heist animated comedy about a group of animal thugs who try to reform themselves as model citizens, trounced the competition with $24 million and landed at the top. In his critically praised feature directing debut, Pierre Perifel tapped a talented voice cast that portrays lovable rogue characters: Sam Rockwell (Mr. Wolf), Awkwafina (Ms. Tarantula), Anthony Ramos (Mr. Piranha), Craig Robinson (Mr. Shark), and Marc Maron (Mr. Snake).

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 continued to power its way in the North American box office, earning $15.2 million to stay in second place. The sequel, headed by Jim Carrey, back as Dr. Robotnik, and Ben Schwartz (voice of the titular Sonic), has collected $145.8 million after three weeks.

Although its performance does not bode well for the Wizarding World of JK Rowling, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore still managed to secure the third slot. Eddie Redmayne’s return as Newt Scamander drew $14 million for a total of $67.1 million so far.

Amid this onslaught of crooked animals, hedgehogs, and beasts, a tale of dueling Vikings, led by Alexander Skarsgård, could only debut in fourth place with a $12 million haul. Directed by Robert Eggers, The Northman also stars Nicole Kidman, Claes Bang, Ethan HawkeAnya Taylor-Joy, Willem DafoeBjörk, and Gustav Lindh.

The 1-2-3- finish of wholesome fare points to the return of the families to their neighborhood cineplexes after the pandemic. So even the critics’ darling, Nicolas Cage’s The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent, bowed only at number five.

With an audience that’s skewed toward male adults like The Northman, the meta-comedy in which Nicolas gamely pokes fun at his persona, image, and career, picked up $7.1 million.

Box office analysts are predicting that with continued good word of mouth, the film, directed by Tom Gormican and costarring Pedro Pascal, Tiffany Haddish, and Neil Patrick Harris, may have legs.

Making up the rest of the top ten were, in order, Everything Everywhere All at Once, $5.4 million; The Lost City, $4.375 million; Father Stu, $3.3 million; Morbius, $2.25 million; and Ambulance, $1.8 million.

Internationally, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore continues to find better reception in other countries to emerge on top. The David Yates-directed third installment in the Fantastic Beasts movie series netted $38.3 million in over 60 territories and hit the $200 million offshore benchmark.

Based on the top ticket sales, Newt Scamander and Arbus Dumbledore (Jude Law) still have a loyal following in these markets: France, Japan, Germany, the United Kingdom, and China.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is poised to cross the $300 million milestone offshore after collecting $19 million. The Lost City, the surprise hit pairing of Channing Tatum and Sandra Bullock, continues to find its bearing overseas with $17.1 million, for a global tally of $128.1 million.

Also notching a $100 million international milestone is India’s KGF: Chapter 2 which drew $1.6 million. Directed by Prashanth Neel, the Indian Kannada-language period action movie’s actual worldwide earnings are $114. 9 million.

The news is still grim in China where COVID-19 cases are still on the rise, keeping many movie theaters shut down.

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