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What happened to the box office during Thanksgiving weekend, from ‘House of Gucci’ to ‘Ghostbusters: Afterlife’

What to watch and what not to watch, that is the question

Paul Rudd attends the premiere of “Ghostbusters: Afterlife.”
Paul Rudd attends the premiere of “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” at AMC Lincoln Square 13 on Monday, Nov. 15, 2021, in New York.
Evan Agostini, Invision via Associated Press

Moviegoing has yet to return to pre-pandemic times and this was before the news about omicron, a new COVID-19 variant, sparked concerns.

Per The Hollywood Reporter, combined domestic ticket sales for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend hit their lowest level in a quarter of a century, excluding the year 2020.

  • Revenues from Wednesday to Sunday for the holiday week came in at $142 million compared to $263 million in 2019.
  • “The box office recovery is very much a work in progress, even if it’s headed in the right direction,” said Comscore analyst Paul Dergarabedian in the report.

The roster of films for the weekend included — “Encanto,” “Ghostbusters: Afterlife,” “House of Gucci,” “Resident Evil: Welcome to Racoon City,” and “King Richard,” which were a clear mix of family-friendly fun and gripping adult drama.

Here’s a quick breakdown of how films performed at the box office over the weekend.

What moviegoers watched

‘Ghostbusters: Afterlife’ (released Nov. 19)

Winner of the Thanksgiving week, this movie grossed $95.3 million in the first 10 days which included a $44 million debut, per The Hollywood Reporter.

Per Forbes, the movie is a “successful kid-friendly fantasy adventure” that works for “Ghostbuster” fans and those new to the movies.

‘Encanto’ (released Nov. 24)

The Walt Disney animated movie made $40.3 million across the five-day holiday, per The Associated Press. Though it didn’t do as well as other Disney movies — such as “Coco” with $72 million and “Ralph Breaks the Internet” with $84 million — it still did great for an animated movie during the pandemic, the report added.

The movie tells a magical tale that displays the Latin culture with precision. It is a children’s movie with a deeper political message waiting to be unraveled, per The New York Times.

‘House of Gucci’ (released Nov. 24)

Per The Hollywood Reporter, it made $14.2 million over the Thanksgiving weekend. Lady Gaga as the star lured younger adults to see the project as 45% of ticket buyers were between the age of 18 and 34, the report added.

Lady Gaga and Adam Driver as fashion heirs paired with a scandalous and witty story, per Indiewire, can easily rival a soap opera though it has a bigger budget.

What moviegoers skipped

‘King Richard’ (released Nov. 19)

A Warner Bros. film, which is also available on HBO Max, opened to a disappointing $5.7 million a week before Thanksgiving. The holiday weekend didn't help in the revival, per The Hollywood Reporter.

This adult drama stars Will Smith as Richard Williams, the father of Serena and Venus Williams. According to The Guardian, he gets to the heart of the character in this watchable biopic.

‘Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City’ (released Nov. 24)

According to The Hollywood Reporter, this Sony production made $8.8 million for a five-day domestic debut.

Per Forbes, this unrequested and unrequired “Resident Evil” reboot doesn’t represent the interest of the general audience, instead referring to previous movies and the game it is based on.