LOS ANGELES (AP) — It’s victory for “Dunkirk” and “Girls Trip” at the box office this weekend. Both original and well-reviewed films smashed expectations and enticed diverse audiences to the theaters, even though cumulatively summer remains down from last year.
Christopher Nolan’s World War II epic brought in an estimated $50.5 million to easily top the charts, according to Warner Bros., while the raucous comedy “Girls Trip” broke the R-rated comedy slump of 2017 with $30.4 million to take second place.
“Dunkirk” was far from an inevitable summer success. But stellar reviews, awards buzz and hype around the film’s large-scale production helped drive people to the theater and large-format screens.
“We’re beyond thrilled with this exceptional achievement for ‘Dunkirk,’ ” said Jeff Goldstein, who heads distribution for Warner Bros. “The critical reception worldwide has been consistently effusive. It really propelled this movie that wasn’t an obvious win.”
Audiences were 60 percent male and 76 percent over the age of 25 for the PG-13 rated film, while IMAX audiences represented 23 percent of the market share (or $11.7 million of the total grosses from only 402 screens).
“It became a must-see event,” said Paul Dergarabedian, a senior media analyst for comScore.