‘In the Heights’ Struggles as ‘A Quiet Place Part II’ Makes More Noise at Box Office

In the Heights (Credit: Warner Bros.)

In the Heights has an A-list creative team and stellar reviews from critics. Yet the Warner Bros. movie musical made a muted debut this weekend at the box office.

Instead of taking the top spot — as had been expected by analysts — Jon M. Chu’s adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s musical opened in second place behind A Quiet Place Part II, which is now in its third weekend.

Paramount horror sequel A Quiet Place Part II earned an estimated $11.6 million this weekend, bringing its total domestic haul to $109 million, according to box office tracking company Comscore.

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A Quiet Place Part II (Credit: Paramount Pictures)
A Quiet Place Part II (Credit: Paramount Pictures)

In the Heights came in a close second with $11.4 million from Friday to Sunday, well below industry expectations, which had the film debuting in the $15 million to $20 million range.

“Wild ranging predictions for an opening weekend that ran the gamut from the low teens to over $24 million tells us how complex the movie marketplace remains,” Comscore Senior Media Analyst Paul Dergarabedian told Urban Hollywood 411. “That spread shows the volatile nature of this still COVID impacted movie marketplace that has only about 76 percent of locations open and capacity restrictions in play.”

In the Heights opened wide in 3,456 in locations for a per theater average of $3,300. Outside North America, it earned another $200,000 on 476 screens. The PG-13 musical stars Anthony Ramos, Corey Hawkins, Leslie Grace, Jimmy Smits, Daphne Rubin-Vega and Olga Merediz.

Domestically, the film was released simultaneously on HBO Max because of the pandemic, which may have kept some fans at home. Although it should be noted that Warner Bros.’ The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It also opened simultaneously last weekend on HBO Max and the film still opened with $24.1 million.

Heading into this weekend, In the Heights received considerable buzz and scored a stellar 96 percent positive rating from critics on review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes. Yet it could not overcome fan excitement surrounding the competition.

“A Quiet Place Part II is a knockout of a movie and has become a must-see event because it’s only in theaters and thus the FOMO (fear of missing out) factor is off the charts for this wild ride of a horror movie and that’s continuing to drive fans to the multiplex,” Dergarabedian added.

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With In the Heights ringing up just $11.4 million, there will likely be some hand-wringing at Warner Bros. as to why the movie musical failed to fly higher.

Elsewhere at the box office, Sony’s Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway also made a lackluster debut, opening in third place with $10.4 million from 3,346 locations. The animated family film features a voice cast that includes James Corden, Rose Byrne, Domhnall Gleeson, David Oyelowo, Damon Herriman, Elizabeth Debicki and Margot Robbie.

The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It, now in its second weekend, took in another $10 million for a fourth place finish and Cruella rounds out the top five with $6.7 million in its third weekend for a total domestic take of $56 million.

Also worth noting, Hidden Empire Film Group’s The House Next Door: Meet The Blacks 2 opened in seventh place with a $1 million haul. The indie horror sequel is playing in 420 locations.

Below is the box office chart provided by Comscore.

Box Office Chart for the weekend on June 13, 2021. (Credit: Comscore)