Ant-Man 3 suffers worst second week drop in MCU history

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania suffers a huge drop while Cocaine Bear takes a bite out of the competition.

When a Marvel film hits theaters, they are events. People eagerly anticipate the continuing adventures of their favorite Marvel characters and tend to go back week after week after week giving the films legs that other movies would be envious of. Even though Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania won its second weekend with $32.2 million, that number represents a 70% drop off which is officially the largest second week decline in Marvel Cinematic Universe history. Something I did not expect when I said it would “Easily win the weekend.” Of course this threequel had further to fall than its predecessors, as it opened to a franchise best $106.1 million while the original Ant-Man opened with $57.2 million and lost 56.5% in its second weekend and its sequel Ant-Man and the Wasp opened to $75.8 million and lost 61.6% in its second weekend. 

So the question now is: why did this one hit such a massive wall in its second weekend? It could be due to the lackluster critic ratings which currently have it as the second worst reviewed film in the MCU (after Eternals, which had a 62.3% second weekend drop off) although our own JimmyO was one of the critics who found enough to love in this film giving it an 8/10 in his review. If I may give my two cents: I have really enjoyed the Ant-Man movies, they have had great action and the comedy was genuinely funny, but when Quantumania ended, I couldn’t help but feel massive disappointment. It lacked a lot of the fun that the first two films had. 

I don’t think the issue lies solely with Ant-Man, but the MCU overall. From Iron Man through Endgame every film felt like it was a must see because it was building to something epic. Endgame delivered that epic conclusion, but then there was a bit of a problem: the MCU had to continue. So the next batch of films just felt… unneeded. The thing we all loved from the first few phases of the MCU was the connective tissue. The after credits scenes were phenomenal teasers for the next adventures that whet our collective appetites for what was to come. It appears Quantumania’s end credits scene has some of that connective tissue, the only problem is: I, like many other audience members, haven’t watched any of the MCU TV shows, so any connection there is fully lost on me. And, I must admit, I am not a comic book reader, only a comic book movie watcher, which I believe to be the case with most MCU audience members, so any connection to these characters and their comic book origins is also lost on me as well. I am joblo movie goer, which is why I write for! 

Perhaps when we get to the next two Avengers movies we will look back at this batch of movies as laying the groundwork for those (hopefully) amazing films and re-judge them as great launch pads for the true next saga in the MCU (despite having five current “Phases,” the MCU is currently in its second “Saga.” The first Saga was “The Infinity Saga” which was everything up to Spider-Man: Far From Home while “The Multiverse Saga” kicked off with Black Widow). I have been a first day viewer of every MCU film since Iron Man, and every studio goes through some rough patches. I just really hope Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 3 can give me the WOW! factor I once had for the MCU. But I will end on a hopeful note, as there does appear to be some movies on the MCU slate that can really get audiences excited again. Whether it is Captain America: New World Order coming next May, the relaunch of the Blade franchise next September, Deadpool 3 officially joining the MCU in November of 2024 with Fantastic Four and at some point the X-Men soon to follow. So there is a lot to look forward to, and let’s be honest, I’ll still be there on opening day!

Did you know there were other movies released this weekend? And those movies actually killed it at the box office! Coming in second place is Cocaine Bear with an impressive $23.09 million, coming in much higher than the mid teens the film was tracking towards earlier in the week. You can chalk that one up to some really solid reviews, including a 7/10 from our own Chris Bumbray. I was lucky enough to see this one on Thursday and it was exactly what I hoped it would be. The movie is called Cocaine Bear and is Rated R and what I got was an R rated movie about a bear on a bunch of cocaine that kills a bunch of people! If that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, this one is probably not for you. The films director, Elizabeth Banks, has spent her career turning in hilarious performances in films like The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Zack & Miri Make a Porno, Role Models and Pitch Perfect 2, which was also her feature directorial debut, so the fact that this film is actually genuinely hilarious is really no surprise. We will see how this one performs in the weeks to come, even though it seemed like everyone in my theater generally enjoyed the movie, the exits aren’t as impressive with an audience score currently at just 74% and a B- cinemascore. 

Third place belongs to the Kelsey Grammar starring Jesus Revolution with $15.5 million which is well over the single digits the film was tracking towards earlier in the week. These faith based movies have a great business model: keep the budget low (this one is reported to have come in under $15 million) and see your films go into profit in their first week of release. It is a sound business model! Even more impressive, audiences love these films. Jesus Revolution currently sits at a 99% audience score and a rare A+ cinemascore. The films co-director Jon Erwin was also responsible for the 2018 faith based hit I Can Only Imagine which opened to $17.1 million and legged out to an $83.4 million domestic finish. It looks like he may a similar hit on his hands.

The remainder of the top ten look to be your holdovers: Avatar: The Way of Water takes fourth place with another $4.7 million added to its massive $665.3 million domestic total. Coming in fifth place sees Puss in Boots: The Last Wish with an additional $4.1 million. Sixth through ninth place are Magic Mike’s Last Dance ($3 million); Knock at the Cabin ($1.87 million); 80 For Brady ($1.83 million) and Missing ($1.01 million) while tenth place goes to the Tom Hanks starring A Man Called Otto with $850 thousand. This film did the old school slow roll out, opening on just 4 screens before expanding to 637 and then breaking wide on 3,802 screens, which due to demand expanded to 3,957 screens the following week. That tactic worked as this more adult targeted film has amassed a healthy $62.2 million domestic and even managed to pass the $100 million mark at the worldwide box office this week. Films like Avatar: The Way of Water were always destined to be juggernauts, but it is quite nice to see something smaller like A Man Called Otto also getting back to pre-pandemic numbers.

What are your views on the state of the MCU right now? Please let us know in the comments section and don’t forget to check out this week’s poll where we ask: What is your favorite Killer Animal Movie.

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