‘Wakanda Forever’ dominates Thanksgiving box office

Disney and Marvel Studios’ Black Panther: Wakanda Forever easily fended off two new challengers and continued to dominate the domestic box office over Thanksgiving weekend, according to Comscore estimates.

Directed by Ryan Coogler, the acclaimed sequel grossed $45.9 million in its third weekend for a grand total of $367.7 million in North America. The superhero film has grossed about $676 million worldwide.

New in theaters this weekend were Disney’s Strange World, which opened in second place with $11.9 million, and Sony Pictures’ Devotion, which debuted in third place with $6 million.

Co-directed by Don Hall and Qui Nguyen, Strange World follows a family of explorers on an important expedition beyond the towering mountains that surround their hometown. The animated adventure will be voiced by Jake Gyllenhaal, Dennis Quaid, Jaboukie Young-White, Gabrielle Union and Lucy Liu.

The family film received a decent re-rating of 73% on review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes and a lackluster B-grade from viewers polled by CinemaScore. Far from it, “Strange World” fell short of early box office expectations, which were expecting it to open at $30 million.

“One of the triumphs of ‘Strange World’ is the vibrant, strange, visually stunning subterranean world that the film’s heroes encounter while trying to save their way of life,” writes Tracy Brown of the Los Angeles Times in her review.

“From its rich color palette to its cute and deadly flora and fauna, this strange, mysterious world deserves its status as the film’s title character.”

Directed by JD Dillard, “Devotion” stars Jonathan Majors and Glenn Powell as two brave Navy fighter pilots serving the United States during the Korean War. Rounding out the historical drama’s supporting cast are Christina Jackson, Thomas Sadoski, Daren Kagasoff and Joe Jonas.

The war epic earned a solid re-rating of 79% on Rotten Tomatoes, but has yet to earn a CinemaScore testimonial. “Devotion” also underperformed slightly at the domestic box office based on early estimates that put the film in the $7-8 million range.

“Tonally, ‘Devotion’ remains consistent, never striving for exaggerated emotion or sentiment, but simply trying to express something authentically moving and human,” writes film critic Katie Walsh in her review for the Los Angeles Times.

“He achieves this unequivocally by telling a compelling story of friendship during war and beyond that is both rare and genuine.”

Rounding out the domestic box office top 5 this cycle were Searchlight’s The Menu, which grossed $5.2 million in its second weekend for a total of $18.7 million in North America; and Warner Bros.’ “Black Adam,” which grossed $3.4 million in its sixth weekend for a North American total of about $163 million. Overall, Thanksgiving weekend totals at the domestic box office this year were significantly lower than before the pandemic.

Universal Pictures’ Violent Night, a holiday horror comedy starring Stranger Things’ David Harbor as Santa Claus, premieres this weekend.

https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/movies/story/2022-11-27/wakanda-forever-black-panther-2-thanksgiving-box-office-disney ‘Wakanda Forever’ dominates Thanksgiving box office

Sarah Ridley

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