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Box Office: ‘Fate of the Furious’ Dominates Tom Hanks’ ‘The Circle’

Variety logo Variety 4/29/2017 Dave McNary
This image released by Universal Pictures shows Charlize Theron, left, and Vin Diesel in "The Fate of the Furious." (Universal Pictures via AP):   © The Associated Press  

Universal’s “The Fate of the Furious” is cruising to its third straight box office crown with $18.5 million at 4,077 North American sites this weekend, doubling the opening of Tom Hanks-Emma Watson thriller “The Circle.”

Saturday estimates showed Pantelion’s romantic comedy “How to be a Latin Lover” over-performing in its debut with $12 million at only 1,118 venues. Great India Films’ launch of Bollywood action sequel “Baahubali 2: The Conclusion” — a sequel to 2015’s “Baahubali: The Beginning” — is also showing impressive results with $9.1 million at just 450 locations.

“The Fate of the Furious,” the eighth film in Universal’s sturdy “The Fast and the Furious” franchise, has dominated the domestic box office for the past two weeks. The ensemble actioner, starring Vin Diesel, Dwayne Johnson, and Charlize Theron, should wind up the weekend with nearly $192 million in its first 17 days.

“The Circle,” jointly handled by STX and EuropaCorp, is heading for about $9.3 million at 3,163 locations. It’s performing below expectations, which had been in the $10 million to $15 million range. The movie, which premiered on Wednesday at the Tribeca Film Festival, has a relatively inexpensive $18 million budget.

“The Circle” stars Hanks as the quietly villainous founder of a Silicon Valley social media company, with Watson portraying an employee who finds herself in a dilemma over ethics. Audiences were unimpressed and gave “The Circle” a thumbs down with a D+ CinemaScore grade — well below the norm. Dave Eggers co-wrote the screenplay, based on his novel of the same name. James Ponsoldt (“The Spectacular Now”) directed and produced.

Pantelion, a joint venture between Lionsgate and Mexico-based Televisa, is releasing “How to Be a Latin Lover,” which had expected to bow to about $7 million at 1,118 sites. The film marks the feature directorial debut of Ken Marino, and stars Eugenio Derbez, Salma Hayek, Rob Lowe, and Kristen Bell.

Friday audiences were impressed as the film earned an A CinemaScore grade overall. Customers for “Latin Lover” were 55% female and 75% over 25.

Fox’s fifth weekend of “The Boss Baby” continued to draw well with $8.1 million at 3,739 locations, good enough for fifth place. The animated comedy from DreamWorks Animation will finish the weekend with $147 million domestically.

Disney’s seventh weekend of “Beauty and the Beast” will follow in sixth with around $6 million, lifting its domestic total to nearly $480 million. “Beauty” is the ninth-largest domestic grosser of all time, trailing “Finding Dory” at $486 million.

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