The Meg has surpassed all box office expectations this weekend to become Warner Bros. biggest domestic opening of 2018, thus far.
The Hollywood Reporter points out that this is the third summer in a row to have a shark movie surpass expectations at the box office. The Meg joins 47 Meters Down (2016) starring Mandy Moore and The Shallows (2017) starring Blake Lively, as the most recent shark movie to take a surprising chunk out of the box office.
Li Bingbing, Rainn Wilson, Ruby Rose, Winston Chao and Cliff Curtis co-star in the movie, which follows a group of scientists trying to stop a mammoth shark from causing destruction. Heading into the weekend, tracking showed The Meg opening to around $20 million. In addition to besting predictions, the film prospered despite receiving a B+ CinemaScore, versus an A. The pic skewed slightly male (52 percent), while nearly 70 percent of the audience was over 25.
The Meg outperformed Steven Spielberg’s nostalgia-fest Ready Player One and the glamorous ladies of Oceans 8. The folks behind The Meg may take particular delight in outperforming Spielberg, as he was the director behind the biggest shark movie in cinematic history, Jaws (1975).
The film earned $45.3 million stateside and $101.5 million internationally; The Meg doubled the expected domestic opening. China’s Gravity Pictures helped produce the picture and are handling distribution in the Middle Kingdom. Thankfully, the Middle Kingdom was rather receptive and The Meg was awarded a $50.3 million debut. IMAX sales brought in $13.6 million with nearly half of that coming from China.
The Meg managed to earn back nearly its entire budget opening weekend and with no real box office competition for weeks to come, The Meg is expected to turn a nice profit. To put it into perspective, The Shallows made with $119 million on a $25 million budget and 47 Meters Down made $44.3 million on a $5.5 million budget.
The Meg boasts an impressively diverse cast with the popular Chinese actress, Li Bingbing and the charismatic Jason Statham as our leads up against a giant shark. The Meg has all it needs to continue swimming.
Did you catch The Meg opening weekend? If so, let us know your thoughts about the movie in the comment section below!