Sony’s Uncharted is racking up big points in its box office debut, earning an estimated $15.4 million on Friday for a projected domestic opening of $45 million to $50 million over the long Presidents Day weekend.
The movie stars Tom Holland — who is still in theaters in the mega-blockbuster Spider-Man: No Way Home — and Mark Wahlberg. Uncharted is doing far more business than expected thanks to younger males, the demo that has been the most likely to go to the movies throughout the pandemic.
The video game adaptation based on the popular PlayStation game series from publisher Naughty Dog wasn’t exactly well-received by critics but is charming audiences, who gave it a B+ CinemaScore.
Overseas, the pic opened to $22 million last weekend in its first 15 markets. Better yet, the movie is one of the few Hollywood event movies during the pandemic to receive a release date in China, where it rolls out on March 14.
Directed by Ruben Fleischer (Venom), the movie was conceived as an origin story for the game series’ globe-trotting adventurer Nathan Drake, played by Holland.
Nathan begins the story as a bartender before he is recruited by seasoned treasure hunter Victor “Sully” Sullivan (Wahlberg) to recover a fortune amassed by Ferdinand Magellan and lost 500 years ago. What starts as a heist job for the duo becomes a globe-trotting, white-knuckle race to reach the prize before the ruthless Santiago Moncada (Antonio Banderas), who believes he and his family are the rightful heirs.
The Channing Tatum starrer Dog is also opening nationwide this weekend. The United Artists release started with $5 million on Friday for a projected $14.4 million opening over the four-day holiday weekend.
Tatum co-directed the passion project alongside his Magic Mike collaborator Reid Carolin. The movie boasts strong exits and an A- CinemaScore. It is skewing female and older.
Inspired by 2017’s HBO documentary War Dog: A Soldier’s Best Friend, the film follows Jackson Briggs, an Army Ranger desperate to see action again after getting sidelined by a brain injury that induces seizures. To get back into his commanding officer’s good graces, he accepts an assignment to drive Lulu, an Army dog who served in Afghanistan, some 1,500 miles in his lovingly restored ’84 Bronco so the canine, herself traumatized by her wartime experiences, can attend the funeral of her late handler.
Uncharted will easily top the holiday frame, followed by Dog and No Way Home. Updated numbers will be released Sunday morning.
The weekend’s third new offering, Cursed, is looking at a 10th place finish with less than $2 million for the four days.