Christopher Nolan's Tenet, the first major studio release to launch during the pandemic, has topped $280 million worldwide, dominating a mild US box office run with $3.4 million at 2,850 locations in its fourth weekend to go past $41 million domestically in four weeks, reports Variety.
About 70 percent of US movie theatres are currently open, while those in the country's top markets, Los Angeles and New York, remain closed. Theatres that are operating are limiting audiences to a maximum of 50 percent capacity to distance moviegoers from one another.
The $200 million espionage epic is making up for its disappointing domestic run overseas, where the top five offshore hubs for Warner Bros. film are China ($64.3M), UK ($19.6M), France ($18M), Germany ($14.6M) and Korea ($13.1M), reports Deadline.
In celebration of its 40th anniversary the, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back hit the big screen again. The iconic film collected an impressive $908,000 from 2,097 cinemas.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Empire Strikes Back placed high up on the chart behind Tenet, 20th Century's The New Mutants ($1.1 million), Unhinged ($1 million) and K-pop pic Break the Silence: The Movie, the latest concert doc about South Korean boy band BTS. Break the Silence, playing in 560 locations, opened to an estimated $960,000.
Shawn Robbins, chief analyst at Box Office Pro, said it's no surprise that the American moviegoing business is subdued amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
"This weekend is continuing what's now expected to become a trend of quieter weekends at the domestic box office in the early autumn weeks following numerous release delays since Tenet opened," he said.
"It's another good news, bad news scenario as Tenet itself and other films are displaying stronger legs than typically seen in pre-pandemic times, but the volume of total business in the market is lacking due to modest consumer awareness, the absence of four-quad films, and no promotional engine usually driven by the Los Angeles and New York markets," he added.