Suppose you were to ask someone which Universal Pictures film released in 2023 would gross over $1 billion at the box office. In all likelihood, they would mention either Fast X or Oppenheimer. However, it now seems that The Super Mario Bros. Movie will be the first to achieve this feat.
Having completed its third week of theatrical run, the Nintendo film has amassed $434 million in domestic earnings with a whopping $871 million worldwide take - and growing. This places it on course to exceed the $1 billion milestone, making it the first film of 2023 to accomplish this achievement. This feat will also mark Illumination's third film to surpass the $1 billion mark, following Despicable Me 3 and Minions.
The Super Mario Bros. Movie made its debut on April 5 and had a tremendous opening weekend during Easter, setting the record for the biggest opening weekend of the year with a whopping $204 million in revenue. The animated film continues to perform impressively at the domestic box office, generating $92 million in its second week and $58 million in the most recent week, with only a 36.9% drop in earnings.
Furthermore, The Super Mario Bros. Movie has now become the second-fastest animated film to reach the $400 million milestone at the domestic box office, lagging only three days behind The Incredibles 2. Moreover, it has secured its place as the third highest-grossing Universal Pictures film at the local box office to date, trailing behind Jurassic Park ($653.4 million) and E.T. The Extraterrestrial ($437.1 million).
Warner Bros.' critically acclaimed horror flick, Evil Dead Rise, which is the fifth movie in the Evil Dead franchise, came in second at the domestic box office this weekend, earning $23.5 million in revenue. Despite the initial plan of debuting the film on the rebranded Max streaming platform, the studio changed its strategy and opted for a big screen release, which turned out to be a wise move.
Evil Dead Rise has grossed $40.3 million globally, with 58% of its audience comprising males and 67% falling within the 18–34 age range. The largest demographic is 25–34, constituting 36% of the audience. Given the production budget of $19 million, the film has a reasonable probability of crossing the $100 million mark, which would set a new record high for the Evil Dead franchise.
Guy Ritchie's action thriller, The Covenant, secured the third spot, with a box office collection of $6.2 million. The film, which is the second release by the English director this year, features Jake Gyllenhaal in the lead and is produced by MGM. The film has been well received by critics, and CinemaScore audiences have awarded it an average grade of A.
John Wick: Chapter 4 and Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves came in at fourth and fifth positions on the box office charts, respectively. This weekend, John Wick: Chapter 4 added $5.8 million to its total domestic earnings, bringing it up to $168.8 million. Meanwhile, Honor Among Thieves, the fantasy heist comedy film, earned $5.4 million this weekend, pushing its total domestic earnings to $82.1 million.
Ari Aster's surreal horror flick Beau Is Afraid managed to move up to the ninth position on the box office chart, earning just over $3 million. Although this marks a whopping 782.3% increase in earnings from the previous weekend, it's worth noting that the film only opened in four theaters during its debut weekend.
As an arthouse film, it's unlikely that the Joaquin Phoenix-led film, with a production cost of $35 million, will be able to recoup its investment.