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‘Baby Driver’ Dings ‘Transformers’ For Thursday Top Spot With $3.3M; ‘Wonder Woman’ Whips ‘Batman V. Superman’

Deadline logo Deadline 6/30/2017 Anthony D'Alessandro
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UPDATE, Friday 6:55 AM: Sony-TriStar/Media Rights Capital’s Baby Driver eased 41% on Thursday for a day’s gross of $3.3M bringing its two-day run to $9M. The Edgar Wright-directed movie easily beat Paramount’s Transformers: The Last Knight for the second day in a row; that Michael Bay movie earning an estimated $2.99M and a week-and-half tally of $85M.

A number of rival distributors around town are excited by Baby Driver; its original auteur sensibility and how it stands out from the crowd of franchise films. Many see the movie, given its great reviews and word of mouth, easily reaching a low $20M opening by Sunday and having a long journey ahead at the summer box office.

Warner Bros./DC’s Wonder Woman slotted third with $2.68M, -3% from Wednesday, and has now officially beat Batman v. Superman‘s domestic take at the box office ($330.3M) with a running cume of $330.5M at the end of four weeks. Her end game stateside lies around $360M. Wonder Woman is now the fifth-highest grossing WB release at the domestic B.O., and once she takes out American Sniper ($350M), she’ll be the fourth-highest. Among DC titles, Wonder Woman ranks third behind The Dark Knight ($534.9M) and The Dark Knight Rises ($448.1M).

Disney/Pixar’s Cars 3 was fourth on Thursday with $2.5M, -11%, for a running cume at the end of two weeks at $111.2M.

We’ll have previews figures for Despicable Me 3 and The House soon.

Writethru Thursday AM following Wednesday PM post: Sony-TriStar/Media Rights Capital’s Baby Driver is landing within the range we saw it at yesterday afternoon, with $5.7M at 3,226 locations making it the No. 1 movie on Wednesday. CinemaScore audiences also gave the movie an A- grade on opening night, but the pic’s core audience of under 25 embraced Baby Driver with a solid A grade.

Like PostTrak on Tuesday night, CinemaScore showed guys turning up at 57% to Baby Driver with women at 43%. Those under 25 repped the majority of ticket buyers at 52%. The under 18 demo, who numbered 18%, also gave Baby Driver an A. Forty-four percent came out because they enjoy action movies, while the acting ensemble of Ansel Elgort-Jon Hamm-Kevin Spacey-Jamie Foxx was responsible for pulling in 26% of the audience. Sixteen percent told CinemaScore that they bought tickets because they’re fans of director Edgar Wright.

It’s not often that a major studio opens an economically-priced action title on a Wednesday (this one cost $34M after Georgia rebates), which makes Baby Driver a challenge to comp. Currently, insiders are comparing Baby Driver to a number of summer R-rated comedies, but still that’s not perfectly exact. Baby Driver‘s first-day is higher than Entourage‘s first day of $5.37M. But that movie was branded IP, saw the turnout of its fans on opening day with its daily business collapsing thereafter with a 3-day of $10.2M and five day of $17.7M. Sony is still seeing Baby Driver in the teens through five days, but the industry is thinking a $20M+ tally by the end of Sunday.

Unlike Entourage, Baby Driver has critics and a solid word of mouth working in its favor and the movie could see an uptick in its daily Friday and Saturday grosses off that (except for Thursday which is always a down day percent wise for any Wednesday opener). An R-rated comedy like We’re the Millers had a 47% Rotten Tomatoes score (better than Entourage‘s 33% Rotten) and an A- CinemaScore. Millers opened to $6.77M and saw a surge on Friday and Saturday respectively with $8.5M and $10.3M. Final 5-day was $37.9M.

In regards to online ticket sales, Baby Driver was the No. 2 top ticket sold on Wednesday on Fandango behind Despicable Me 3 and sales weren’t showing any signs of flagging. In a Fandango moviegoer poll, 90% are looking forward to the film’s wild car stunts, 82% are Kevin Spacey fans, 66% have seen at least one of director Edgar Wright’s movies while 53% said the Baby Driver soundtrack increased their interest in seeing the movie.

On social media, RelishMix observed that the online chatter for the movie is “clearly favorable especially on Facebook and on many of the YouTube reposts” with fans of the Fast and Furious series intrigued by the pic’s car stunts. Baby Driver‘s soundtrack is receiving strong mentions, as well as its actors Foxx, Hamm, Flea and Elgort.

RelishMix also points out that Baby Driver‘s 115M social media universe across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube views bests the average SMU for an action genre title which typically counts an SMU of 67M. YouTube videos are going viral at a rate of 35:1, blowing the action movie average of 7:1 away. Baby Driver benefits from a socially active cast including Foxx (18M), Elgort (11.7M), Spacey (8.4M) and Eiza Gonzalez (5M).

Baby Driver opens in Wright’s UK this weekend, which is always a favorable territory with the director after the U.S., as well as Netherlands and Romania. Spain happens next weekend, with Australia and New Zealand following.

Paramount’s Transformers: The Last Knight was second with $3.25M on Wednesday, -43% from Tuesday, and a running cume of $82.1M. Disney/Pixar’s Cars 3 took $2.8M in third, -31%, at 4,256 venues for a running cume of $108.6M in its second week. Warner Bros./DC’s Wonder Woman was fourth with $2.77M at 3,933, -29%, with $327.9M. It will pass Superman v. Batman very soon.

Here’s an Instagram post from Lily James on set of Baby Driver:

1st Update, Wednesday, 8:06AM: Sony is reporting $2.1M in Tuesday night previews for Edgar Wright’s TriStar/Media Rights Capital action title Baby DriverThat money will be rolled into the film’s opening-day gross as it expands to 3,226 venues today.

Number-wise, that’s slightly more than what Warner Bros.’ Entourage, another R-rated title, took in on its Tuesday preview night ($2M) two summers ago. Baby‘s number also is higher than the $1.2M Tuesday night of WB’s R-rated Vacation reboot. But those movies are quite different in that they’re branded IPs, and were panned by critics. Entourage made $17.66M in five days, while Vacation made $21M.

Baby Driver is different: It’s original, beloved by critics (98% certified fresh), and fanboys adore Wright. Sony thinks they’re in the low-teen millions over five days, but many believe this $34M-budgeted pic can get to $20M in five days.

Early buzz is strong, with last night’s audience giving Baby Driver four out of five stars, according to comScore/Screen Engine’s PostTrak. Guys were present at 57%, women at 43% with 51% under age 25. Men under 25 (31% of all ticket buyers) love the movie the most, with an 88% total positive score, followed by older men (26%) with 81% positive, females under 25 (20%) at 78% and females over 25 (23%) -at 65% positive. Fifty-five percent said the movie met their expectations, while 37% said Baby Driver exceeded their expectations. Forty-six percent bought tickets because Baby Driver is an action movie, while 21% said they came out for the cast as a whole.

We heard last night that Baby Driver already was surging over Transformers: The Last Knight in hourly advance tickets sales for the weekend. As a riveting, romantic original title at the stale summer franchise box office, many truly would like to see Baby Driver rally at the B.O. Even Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 director James Gunn is telling his social media followers to check out the movie:

On Friday, Baby Driver faces off against Illumination/Universal’s Despicable Me 3 ($90M+) and New Line/Village Roadshow/Warner Bros.’ The House ($12M-$16M).

Last Knight was the top film on Tuesday, drawing $5.67M at 4,069 venues for a week’s cume of $78.9M. Disney/Pixar’s Cars 3 was second with $4.1M at 4,256 theaters and a running total of $105.8M. Warner Bros.’ Wonder Woman grossed $3.9M at 3,933 venues for a total of $325.09M — just nickels from overtaking SuicideSquad‘s final cume ($325.1M) today.

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