Now You See Me 2, starring Jesse Eisenberg, Mark Ruffalo and Woody Harrelson, opened in third place with US$23 million domestically.
The Conjuring 2, directed by James Wan, easily topped its closest competitor Warcraft, which disappointed with poor reviews and fell just shy of estimates, taking second place with $24.4 million (£17.1 million).
Warcraft’s China screenings have been so good in fact that it has reached RMB1 billion six hours quicker than Furious 7 did a year ago. The film took in another $50 million internationally.
The success of Warcraft oversees further sees China becoming the largest market, which experts predict will happen by the end of 2017. Factor in overly positive reviews (with an aggregate RT score above 70%), The Conjuring 2 almost matched the weekend earnings of its predecessor, which opened three years ago.
According to Box Office Mojo, The Conjuring 2 pulled in an impressive $12,070 per-screen average from 3,343 theaters.
In China, the film, taken from the “World of Warcraft” video game franchise, has made a staggering $156 million in its first five days.
Of these three new releases, only The Conjuring 2 is a hit with the critics, earning a solid 74% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, while Now You See Me 2 has a middling 36% rating and Warcraft has a 27% score, although it did rise from its dismal 16% score earlier this week.
The big story at the overseas box office this weekend was the huge opening for “Warcraft” in China, where it set a record for reaching one billion yuan faster than any other imported movie at the Chinese box office. That’s not a ton less than Now You See Me’s debut gross of $29.3 million, but the sequel reportedly cost between $15-$25 million more to make. For the supernatural horror subgenre that dollar amount makes it the fourth-highest debut of all time, behind Paranormal Activity 3 ($52.5M), The Conjuring ($41.8M) and Paranormal Activity 2 ($40.8M). Rounding out the top 5 will be Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2 with $14.8 million and X-Men: Apocalypse with $10 million. The original caper thriller performed far above expectations with $350 million worldwide in 2013.
Next week sees the release of Pixar’s Finding Nemo sequel, Finding Dory.
Next weekend, “Finding Dory” and “Central Intelligence” will be released into theaters, and both are expected to put up big numbers.
If you observe, Hollywood movies like The Jungle Book, Batman vs Superman, Captain America: Civil War, X-Men, etc., movies have got enormous response in India.