The Rock is at it again.
The action-movie star, whose real name is Dwayne Johnson, led the new Warner Bros. release “Rampage” to the top of the box office this weekend, recording $34.5 million in ticket sales at U.S. and Canadian theaters, researcher ComScore Inc. estimated Sunday in an email. “A Quiet Place,” last weekend’s winner, fell to second place with $32.6 million.
The Rock deployed his powerful social-media machine to generate interest in the movie, reaching out to his 103 million Instagram followers and handing Time Warner Inc.’s film division one of its best openings of the year. His December 2017 film, “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle,” brought in $951 million worldwide for Sony Pictures.
Analysts at Box Office Pro were forecasting sales of $36.5 million for “Rampage.” The picture cost $120 million to produce, according to Box Office Mojo, another researcher. The movie generated $114.1 million worldwide, a haul that could help make the movie profitable for Burbank, California-based Warner Bros. Critics were split, according to aggregator Rottentomatoes.com.
Johnson stars as Davis Okoye, a primatologist trying to protect a once gentle ape that scientists turn into a rampaging giant. Johnson’s character teams up with geneticists trying to prevent a catastrophe.
The other new wide release of the weekend was the poorly reviewed horror movie “Truth or Dare,” from Blumhouse Productions, which landed in third place with sales of $19.1 million. That beat Box Office Pro’s prediction of a $13.5 million debut.
Part of Comcast Corp.’s Universal Pictures, Blumhouse is known for its horror successes, but the latest release about the classic kids’ game got favorable reviews from just 15 percent of critics, according to Rottentomatoes.com.
‘A Quiet Place,” featuring real-life husband and wife John Krasinski and Emily Blunt in a horror story about a family forced to live in silence, is delivering a much needed boost to Viacom Inc. Its Paramount Pictures unit was in sixth place among major studios in domestic ticket sales heading into the weekend. The film exceeded Box Office Pro’s forecast of $28.5 million.