The North American box office was on fire on Friday; in what is shaping up to be the largest overall June weekend of all time without adjusting for ticket price inflation.
Leading the way was Monsters University, which grossed an estimated $30.51 million on Friday according to Disney. It should be reminded that the opening day figure includes an estimated $2.6 million from late night shows that began at 8 p.m. on Thursday night. Compared to past Pixar sequels, the opening day performance for Monsters University was 19 percent stronger than the $25.72 million opening day of 2011's Cars 2 and 26 percent below the $41.15 million opening day of 2010's Toy Story 3. BoxOffice is currently projecting an opening weekend of $81.0 million for Monsters University, which would rank as the fifth largest June opening weekend of all-time without adjusting for ticket price inflation.
Paramount's World War Z was also off to a big start on Friday with an estimated second place take of $25.0 million. That figure includes an estimated $3.6 million from late night shows that began at 8 p.m. on Thursday night. The expensive Brad Pitt vehicle is on course to exceed expectations this weekend, as the mixed buzz in the lead-up up to the film's release ultimately had no effect on the film's opening day performance. The opening day take for World War Z was 16 percent stronger than the $21.47 million opening day take of last year's Prometheus. BoxOffice is projecting an opening weekend take of $62.0 million for World War Z.
After dominating the box office for the past week, Warner's Man of Steel fell to third with an estimated $12.7 million on Friday. Through Friday, the domestic total for the superhero franchise re-launch stands at $181.49 million. Man of Steel was down a sharp 71 percent from last Friday, as the one-two punch of Monsters University and World War Z clearly took a toll on the film. However, Man of Steel is likely to pick up the pace as the rest of the weekend continues. BoxOffice is projecting a third place take of $43.5 million. That would represent a 63 percent decline from last weekend; a bit sharper than the 61 percent last year's The Dark Knight Rises fell in its second weekend.
Sony's This Is The End placed in fourth with an estimated $4.1 million. The ensemble R-rated comedy was down 41 percent from last Friday. That represented a very healthy hold, especially given the collective start of Monsters University and World War Z. With a ten-day take of $48.89 million through Friday, This Is The End is running 13 percent behind the $56.13 million ten-day start of 2008's Pineapple Express and will continue to quickly make up ground in the overall comparison now that is has overtaken Pineapple Express in day to day comparisons. This Is The End is on pace to gross $12.8 million this weekend.
On the heels of last weekend's very solid start in platform release, A24's The Bling Ring was unable to maintain momentum upon expanding into limited release on Friday. The Sofia Coppola directed film grossed an estimated $682,074 for the day. That gave the film a daily per-location average of $1,049 from 650 locations. BoxOffice is projecting a weekend take of $1.75 million for The Bling Ring, which would be noticeably softer than the $4.86 million grossed by A24's Spring Breakers (with a per-location average of $4,401 from 1,104 locations) during its first weekend of major expansion back in March.