The ladies of Ocean’s 8 packed a mean punch at the weekend box office.
The all-female heist film debuted in the top spot with an estimated $41.5 million, surpassing the franchise’s three previous male-led films.
The new installment features an all-star cast of Sandra Bullock, Sarah Paulson, Anne Hathaway, Rihanna, Kate Blanchett, Mindy Kaling, Helena Bonham Carter and Awkwafina. The film was directed and co-written by Gary Ross.
“The target audience — females — are just so underserved,”Jeff Goldstein, Warner Bros. domestic distribution president told The Hollywood Reporter.
In addition to having multiple Oscar winners (Bullock, Blanchett, Hathaway) and chart-topping superstar Rihanna in the cast, the movie’s positive reviews and 68% Rotten Tomatoes rating likely contributed to its good fortunes.
It was the first new installment in the Ocean’s franchise in 11 years. The first film, Ocean’s 11, opened with $38 million back in 2001. The other movies, which opened in 2004 and 2007, failed to break the $40 million mark.
So who propelled Ocean’s 8 into uncharted franchise territory? Female moviegoers, who snapped up tickets at the 4,145 locations across North America where the movie is playing.
Women made up nearly 70 percent of the audience, and nearly 70 percent of ticket holders were over age 25, according to Warner Bros. As for the racial breakdown, 56 percent of the audience was Caucasian. Hispanics made up 17 percent, Asians/other were 14 percent and African-Americans accounted for 13 percent.
The film’s impressive debut is good news for other female-centric remakes.
Elsewhere at the box office, Solo: A Star Wars Story took second place with $15 million, according to Box Office Mojo. Deadpool 2 was third with $13.6 million. Hereditary, a horror film starring Toni Collette, made a solid debut with $13 million and Avengers: Infinity War was fifth with $6.8 million.