'Glass' Easily Tops Box Office on Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend Despite Poor Reviews
Universal Pictures/Jessica Kourkounis

The 'Split' sequel's estimated $40.6 million three-day opening gross is still below expectations of at least $50 million.

AceShowbiz - "Glass" is the new champion at the North American box office. Facing almost no competition from other movies, including last week's winner "The Upside", the new superhero thriller from M. Night Shyamalan debuted atop the chart with approximately $40.6 million for the three-day weekend. Universal Pictures predicts that the movie will make about $47 over the long Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend.

Made on a reported $23 million budget, the "Split" sequel was expected to make more than that considering the buzz over the 2016 predecessor, which turns out to be related to Shyamalan's other successful movie "Unbreakable" (2000). Some industry forecasts predicted at least $60 million opening gross for the movie, while the studio had a more modest expectation of $50 million.

Poor reviews have likely factored in the movie's less than stellar performance. It received a 35 percent "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes, while audiences only gave it a mediocre B on CinemaScore. Most critics complained about the unpredictable plot twists.

Still, Universal domestic distribution chief Jim Orr seems to be pleased with the movie's box office performance, stating, "It think it opened within reasonable expectations. And I believe the debate over the film will make it a water-cooler topic and contribute to a long run."

At No. 2 on the domestic chart is Kevin Hart's "The Upside", which added an estimated $15.7 million on its second weekend. Fox's animated pic "Dragon Ball Super: Broly" was another newcomer in the top ten, debuting at No. 3 with approximately $10.6 million. The Japanese anime film's performance was a surprise for the industry this week.

Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for Comscore, explains, "The enthusiasm for this movie was certainly reflected in these much bigger than expected numbers for a title that I don't think anyone was that aware of, other than the true fans. If you ask the average moviegoer if they've ever heard of 'Dragon Ball Super: Broly,' they'd have absolutely no idea what you're talking about."

"Aquaman" drops two slots to No. 4 with approximately $10.3 million, bringing its total domestic gross to $300 million so far and its worldwide total to cross $1 billion. "Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse" added an estimated $7.3 million, dropping slightly 19.8% in its sixth week.

Top Ten Movies at Weekend Box Office for Jan. 18-20:
  1. "Glass" - $40.6 million
  2. "The Upside" - $15.7 million
  3. "Dragon Ball Super: Broly" - $10.6 million
  4. "Aquaman" - $10.3 million
  5. "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse" - $7.2 million
  6. "A Dog's Way Home" - $7.1 million
  7. "Escape Room (2019)" - $5.3 million
  8. "Mary Poppins Returns" - $5.2 million
  9. "Bumblebee" - $4.7 million
  10. "On the Basis of Sex" - $3.9 million

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