‘Dear Evan Hansen’ opens 2nd to ‘Shang-Chi’ in theaters

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The superhero pic has topped the charts for 4 consecutive weekends and this weekend surpassed “Black Widow” to develop into the very best earner of the pandemic.

“Dear Evan Hansen” could have been a success on Broadway, however the filmed adaptation of the Tony-winning present is off to a gradual begin on the field office in its first weekend in theaters. The Universal musical that is taking part in solely in theaters grossed an estimated $7.5 million from 3,364 areas, in accordance to studio estimates on Sunday. 

First place once more went to Disney and Marvel’s “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” which added $13.3 million in ticket gross sales in North America, bringing its home complete to $196.5 million. The superhero pic has topped the charts for 4 consecutive weekends and this weekend surpassed “Black Widow” to develop into the very best home earner of the pandemic. 

With little in the best way of high-profile competitors this weekend, “Dear Evan Hansen’s” $7.3 million was sufficient to land it in second place. While critics have been lower than impressed, audiences that did end up this weekend have been followers and gave it an A- CinemaScore. Women made up an estimated 62% of the viewers in accordance to exit polls. Directed by Stephen Chbosky and written by Steven Levenson, “Dear Evan Hansen” is a couple of highschool scholar with social anxiousness dysfunction. 

“We are tremendously proud of ‘Dear Evan Hansen’ and everything about it,” mentioned Universal’s head of distribution Jim Orr. “With an exceptional film and great audience scores, we think that’ll lead to a better than normal run at the domestic box office.”

Despite its prestigious pedigree and star-studded cast together with Julianne Moore and Amy Adams, “Dear Evan Hansen” has develop into considerably of a punching bag on social media since its premiere on the Toronto International Film Festival earlier this month. At the center of the jokes is the truth that the movie has a 27-year-old Ben Platt, who originated the position, taking part in a young person. 

“Musicals have always had mixed results at the box office,” mentioned Paul Dergarabedian, the senior media analyst for Comscore. “It’s really difficult to pin down and project what a musical might earn on opening weekend, especially in this marketplace.”

Earlier this year, the variation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “In the Heights” underwhelmed on the field office regardless of stellar critiques — nevertheless it was additionally streaming on HBO Max concurrently.

The single-digit opening weekend of “Dear Evan Hansen” remindedsome of “Cats” which opened to $6.6 million in December 2019. But “Dear Evan Hansen” value considerably much less — $28 million vs. $95 million — in addition to the truth that “Cats” launched to worse critiques in a pre-pandemic atmosphere. 

“‘Cats’ is a completely different movie released in a completely different marketplace. I don’t think comparisons are necessarily fair,” Dergarabedian mentioned. “It’s more about the audience making a choice.”

There can also be “The Greatest Showman” exception. The Hugh Jackman musical defied all field office logic in 2017 and 2018 when it opened to a deathly $8.8 million however went on to gross over $434.9 million globally. Justin Paul and Benj Pasek have been the songwriting duo behind each “The Greatest Showman” and “Dear Evan Hansen.”

Aside from “Shang-Chi,” September has been gradual for many films. The No. 3 film this weekend was “Free Guy,” which has been in theaters for seven weeks and the sixth place spot went to “Jungle Cruise,” in its ninth week. But greater blockbusters are coming to North American theaters beginning in October, with the “Venom” sequel out this upcoming Friday, the James Bond movie “No Time to Die” following on Oct. 8 and “Dune” on Oct. 22.

“This is the proverbial calm before the storm. October looks to be perhaps one of the biggest months of the year at the box office,” Dergarabedian mentioned. “It’s going to be like summer in October in movie theaters.”

And “Dune” is already up and operating in 32 markets abroad. The adaptation of Frank Herbert’s sci-fi novel has grossed $76.5 million in two weeks. 

Estimated ticket gross sales for Friday via Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, in accordance to Comscore. Final home figures will probably be launched Monday. 

1. “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” $13.3 million.

2. “Dear Evan Hansen,” $7.5 million.

3. “Free Guy,” $4.1 million.

4. “Candyman,” $2.5 million.

5. “Cry Macho,” $2.1 million.

6. “Jungle Cruise,” $1.7 million.

7. “Malignant,” $1.5 million.

8. “Copshop,” $1.3 million.

9. “Paw Patrol,” $1.1 million.

10. “Love Story,” $893,765. 

Follow AP Film Writer Lindsey Bahr on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ldbahr