'Boss Baby,' 'Beauty' outshine 'Smurfs 3' at box office


April 10, 2017
Actor Joe Manganiello, left, looks on as a performer dressed as Hefty Smurf embraces Elise Fields at Children's Hospital in the Lawrenceville section of Pittsburgh on March 17, 2017. Manganiello, who voices the character Hefty in the animated film "Smurfs: The Lost Village," visited patients at the hospital and hosted a screening of the film prior to its April 7 nationwide release. (AP)
Contributed A new leader comes to town in 'The Boss Baby'.

The Smurfs are feeling a little blue this weekend.

The third instalment in Sony's animated series, Smurfs: The Lost Village, made its box office debut in third place, with US$14 million - far behind family-friendly holdovers, The Boss Baby and Beauty and the Beast, according to studio estimates yesterday.

Featuring the voices of Demi Lovato and Joe Manganiello, Smurfs, which reportedly cost US$60 million to make, has not charmed critics either. Its earnings were worse than the 2013 opening of Smurfs 2, which went on to gross US$347.5 million worldwide, despite a US$17.5-million debut and a heftier US$105-million price tag.

But the fate of the third Smurfs is not necessarily sealed, says ComScore's senior media analyst, Paul Dergarabedian.

"There are other revenue streams for films like this," Dergarabedian said, noting international profits and home video potential that could recoup production costs.

In first place, The Boss Baby added US$26.3 million in its second weekend in theatres, bringing its North American total to US$89.4 million. Sufficient buzz and the benefit of voice star Alec Baldwin's popular portrayal of President Donald Trump on Saturday Night Live likely helped the film succeed, Dergarabedian said.

Meanwhile, Beauty and the Beast earned US$25 million to take second place at the box office. In four weeks, Disney's live-action fairy tale has brought in US$432.3 million domestically.


While the family films dominated, moviegoers had other options on a relatively quiet weekend. The tepidly reviewed buddy comedy Going in Style, starring Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine and Alan Arkin, opened in fourth place, with US$12.5 million.

The faith-based drama, The Case for Christ, also launched with US$3.9 million from 1,174 theatres.

In limited release, the Chris Evans drama, Gifted, took in US$476,000 from 56 theatres, while the World War II drama, Their Finest, grossed $77,000 from four screens in New York and Los Angeles.

The relative quiet at the box office is ending soon. The Fate of the Furious, the eighth instalment in The Fast and the Furious franchise, speeds into theatres next weekend, followed by Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2, a few weeks later.