Let’s hope that Zac Efron doesn’t have any real EDM aspirations, because America has spoken, and it wants him to step away from the mixer. Just how badly did the star’s new DJ drama do at the box-office this weekend? Put it this way: The Adventures Of Pluto Nash was a bigger hit. We Are Your Friends, Efron’s latest ode to the transformative power of brohood, grossed $1.8 million on more than 2,300 screens. That’s the third worst wide-release debut in history, behind only that famously underperforming Oogieloves movie and the butt-ugly animated flop Delgo. Has the High School Musical crowd grown out of its crush? Or is this some sort of calculated attempt on the part of Efron Nation to get their idol out of the frat house of twentysomething stardom and back into the crooners ghetto of East High School, where he’ll be all theirs again?
Either way, the film did much worse than even the most skeptical of box-office analysts could predict. War Room, on the other hand, exceeded expectations to become the biggest debut in the illustrious career of the Kendrick brothers, the team behind such previous faith-based success stories as Fireproof and Courageous. Though it couldn’t quite win the weekend—Straight Outta Compton held down the top spot for a third weekend in a row, adding another $13.2 million to its haul—the Christian melodrama did manage to land in second place with a robust $11 million, despite a very under-the-radar marketing campaign. Those assuming that the evangelical box-office bubble had burst are singing a new (gospel) tune this morning. Churchgoers are still moviegoers, and their market demands will continue to be met.
With the only other new wide release, No Escape, opening to just $10.3 million (and that’s with a two-day head start on the competition), this proved to be the lowest grossing weekend at the movies all year, behind even that three-day stretch when Chappie had a book. But the globe kept turning for one studio: Universal’s record-breaking year just got a little more record-breaking, as Minions crossed $1 billion in worldwide ticket sales and became the third-highest-grossing animated movie in international box-office history. Watch your back, Frozen and Toy Story 3, because those little plush doofuses are coming for you.
For more detailed numbers, visit Box Office Mojo.