“The Predator” is the weekend’s top movie at the box office, with the Shane Black-directed reboot of the Arnold Schwarzenegger classic edging into the #1 spot with a $24-million domestic opening.
While that was enough to dethrone “The Nun” from its status as box-office champ, Variety points out that “The Predator” will have to perform far better in international markets in order to recoup its hefty $88-million budget.
“The Predator” premiered amidst controversy at the Toronto International Film Festival when star Olivia Munn called out director Shane Black for hiring a registered sex offender to act in the film, without informing any of the cast and crew about the status of actor Steven Wilder Striegel.
While the controversy certainly didn’t appear to help ticket sales, a studio exec doesn’t believe it hurt the film either.
“I don’t think it dissuaded anyone who wasn’t predestined to go,” Chris Aronson, head of domestic distribution at 20th Century Fox, told Variety. “I think it had minimal, if any, impact.”
Meanwhile, “The Nun” sank to the #2 spot with a second-weekend take of $18.2 million, for a two-week total of an impressive $85 million.
Rounding out the top 5 are: “A Simple Favor” at #3 with an opening-weekend gross of $16.05 million; “White Boy Rick” in fourth place with a take of $8.8 million in its debut weekend; and “Crazy Rich Asians” at #5, adding an additional $8.7 million in its fifth week of release for a domestic total of just under $150 million (a blockbuster number for a film with a budget of just $30 million).