“Crazy Rich Asians” topped the North American box office for a second weekend in a row, as a new Melissa McCarthy vehicle failed to live up to already-meager expectations.
Powered in part by pent-up demand for a studio film led by Asian stars, “Crazy Rich Asians” (Warner Bros.) sold about $25 million in tickets between Friday and Sunday — a decrease of only 6 percent compared to its opening weekend. That kind of audience “hold” is extremely rare and indicates exceptional word-of-mouth sales; most films drop between 30 percent and 60 percent from weekend to weekend.
“Crazy Rich Asians” has now collected about $76.8 million in North America, according to comScore, which compiles box office data. Warner has already started to develop a sequel to the film, which has been heralded as a watershed moment for representation on the big screen. A romantic comedy, “Crazy Rich Asians” is the first Hollywood movie with an all-Asian cast and a contemporary story since “The Joy Luck Club” in 1993.
So far, ticket sales for “Crazy Rich Asians” have been less impressive overseas, where the film has only taken in about $7.1 million in a handful of smaller territories. Large countries like Britain will follow in the weeks ahead, although it is unclear whether China, the world’s second-largest film market behind North America, will grant Warner’s request to import the movie. China operates a quota system for foreign films.
For the weekend, the science-fiction thriller “The Meg” (Warner) was second at the domestic box office, collecting about $13 million, for a three-week total of $105.3 million ($408.6 million worldwide).
And Ms. McCarthy’s career continued to cool with “The Happytime Murders” (STXfilms), an R-rated comedy that fizzled in third place with about $10 million in ticket sales. STXfilms and its financing partners spent roughly $40 million to make the movie, which received poor reviews and finds Ms. McCarthy cavorting with puppets designed by the Henson Company.
Ms. McCarthy’s box office results have been on a downward slide. “Spy” arrived to $29 million in 2015, followed by “The Boss” with $23.6 million in 2016. “Life of the Party,” released earlier this year, had initial ticket sales of $18 million.