Box Office: ‘Argylle’ Beats ‘Lisa Frankenstein’ in Slowest Super Bowl Weekend of All Time

Matthew Vaughn’s spy thriller “Argylle” emerged victorious over newcomer “Lisa Frankenstein” in a moribund box office with both films struggling to show signs of life.

“Argylle” claimed the No. 1 spot again with $6.5 million from 3,605 North American venues, marking a steep 62% decline from its disappointing debut. After two weeks of release, Apple’s big-budget caper has generated $28.8 million at the domestic box office and a dismal $60 million globally. It cost $200 million to produce and stands as the year’s first big bomb.

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Horror-comedy “Lisa Frankenstein” cratered in second place with $3.8 million from 3,144 venues — a terrible start for any movie in wide release. However, Focus Features only spent $13 million to make the film, which may cushion box office shortcomings.

That’s a relief for the studio because neither critics nor audiences responded to the movie, which holds a 50% on Rotten Tomatoes and “B” on CinemaScore. “Juno” screenwriter Diablo Cody wrote “Lisa Frankenstein,” which was directed by Zelda Williams (daughter of Robin Williams) in her feature debut. The PG-13 love story follows a misunderstood teenager (Kathryn Newton) whose high school crush (Cole Sprouse) happens to be a corpse.

Super Bowl weekend, which hosts the biggest TV event of the year, usually marks a slow time for moviegoing, and this Sunday’s matchup between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers is no exception. Ticket sales ground to a near halt with roughly $42 million, the lowest collective haul ever for the weekend that coincides with the big game, according to Comscore. By comparison, revenues in 2023 managed to top out at $51 million, while pre-pandemic years of 2020 and 2019 were able to generate $84 million and $75 million, respectively. Paging Taylor Swift to boost ticket sales like she has reportedly driven up football ratings.

“That’s extremely quiet for any weekend of the year, including Super Bowl weekend,” says David A. Gross, who runs the movie consulting firm Franchise Entertainment Research. “‘Dune 2’ cannot come fast enough.”

Sony’s superhero adventure “Madame Web” and Paramount’s Bob Marley biopic “One Love” open on Feb. 14, but moviegoing isn’t expected to pick up in earnest until Denis Villeneuve’s “Dune: Part II” debuts in March. For now, ticket sales are down nearly 15% from 2023, according to Comscore.

Although the year is young, this was also the lowest-grossing weekend of 2024. As a sign of the complete lack of box office competition, David Ayer’s action thriller “The Beekeeper” remained in the top three for the fifth consecutive weekend, while Timothee Chalamet’s “Wonka” stayed in the top four for the ninth weekend in a row.

“The Beekeeper,” starring Jason Statham, landed in third place with $3.46 million from 3,057 venues, bringing its North American tally to $54.7 million. The Amazon MGM film has earned $79.2 million at the international box office for a decent global tally of $133.8 million.

“Wonka” added $3.1 million from 2,764 venues, boosting its domestic tally to $205 million. The Warner Bros. film, which carries a $125 million price tag, has grossed $587 million worldwide. The fantasy musical, an origin story about the fictional chocolatier Willy Wonka, has become a financial success thanks to its impressive staying power.

Universal and Illumination’s animated comedy “Migration” took the fifth spot with $3.02 million from 2,684 theaters this weekend. After eight weeks of release, the family film has grossed $110 million in North America and $235 million globally. It cost $70 million.

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