Box Office: The Conjuring 2 conjures big bucks

Australian exhibitors should have had more faith in Malaysian-born Australian film director James Wan

Australian exhibitors should have had more faith in Malaysian-born Australian film director James Wan across the Queen’s Birthday long weekend which helped boost cinema takings in all states except WA which celebrated the holiday a week earlier.

Wan’s The Conjuring 2 only made it onto 207 screens, but what a presence it had.

#1 $3.52m The Conjuring 2

Movie fans were fascinated by the activities of paranormal investigators in The Conjuring 2. So much so that the modest opening on 207 screens returned an impressive $17,000 screen average. That was close to double the next best across the weekend. The horror movie managed to outpace the opening of the much-hyped TMNT: Out of the Shadows by over three to one in terms of dollars earned.

#2 $2.46m Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows

The widest opening over the weekend was this latest instalment in the long-running franchise which has delivered on every platform. Given the scope of the publicity tour from stars Stephen Amell and Will Arnett the $2.46m debut was probably a disappointment, given it was present on 500+ screens which returned an average of $4,783, the smallest of any movie in the top five.

#3 $2.05m Now You See Me 2

The second weekend has delivered just over $2m as the movie pushes close to $6m to-date. A healthy screen average sits just under $8,000.

#4 $1.61m Money Monster 

A second weekend near the top for the Jodie Foster-directed thriller with George Clooney and Julia Roberts indicating there is still some value in “old” Hollywood star power.

#5 $1.50m Hunt for the Wilderpeople

The New Zealand hit added 50 screens over the weekend as its earnings climbed 30% to $1.50m. A weekend second-best screen average over $9,000 suggests there is still a fair bit of demand too.

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