Lionsgate reports that Divergent took in $22.8 million on Friday following (and including) its $4.9 million Thursday night haul. BoxOffice projects the film will bring in $54 million for the weekend. Those figures are solid and put the $80 million production budgeted flick on course for a profitable global run, although pre-release sales and tracking had indicated a more sizable domestic opening closer to the level of the original Twilight (which banked $69.6 million on opening weekend in November 2008).
On the bright side, Divergent's word of mouth so far appears to be clashing with the critics: the YA adaptation's Rotten Tomatoes score sits at a rough 41 percent as of Saturday morning, but its Flixster audience score is a much stronger 81 percent--including those who haven't seen the film, but are still anticipating it.
This weekend's second wide opener, Muppets Most Wanted, debuted to $4.66 million yesterday. That's a modest start to a run that will inevitably be muted by the current success of Mr. Peabody & Sherman and next month's Rio 2. The film's critical response (77 percent on Rotten Tomatoes) seems to line up with early audience approval (80 percent on Flixster). Enthusiasm and interest dropped from 2011's revival, The Muppets, and the film should still bring in what BoxOffice is projecting to be $17.5 million this weekend.
Last week's top film, Mr. Peabody & Sherman, kicked off its third weekend with $2.72 million yesterday. That's down 50 percent from the same day last week and brings the animation's domestic total up to $72 million after 15 days. BoxOffice projects Peabody will bring in $11.5 million this weekend.
Need for Speed was down 66 percent from its opening day to $2.24 million on Friday. The video game adaptation has grossed $24.9 million domestically in its first 8 days. BoxOffice projects a $7.5 million sophomore frame.
300: Rise of an Empire pulled $2.4 million for its third Friday, bringing its domestic cume up to $87.5 million. BoxOffice projects an $8.2 million weekend.
Meanwhile, The Grand Budapest Hotel expanded into 304 theaters this weekend and earned $1.88 million on Friday for a $6,184 per-theater average. Wes Anderson's latest flick has totaled $8.1 million thus far. BoxOffice is projecting a $6.2 million weekend.
Freestyle reports that God's Not Dead grossed $2.82 million from 780 locations on Friday. BoxOffice projects an $8 million weekend.
Additional reporting by Daniel Garris