On the back of substantial national TV advertising spend over the last four weeks, Paramount Pictures' "The Lost City" climbed to the top of the North American theatrical movie ranking with a $31 million take in its opening weekend, according to Comscore.
Warner Bros.' "The Batman" moved down to second place -- after three weeks atop the charts -- to a still decent $20 million take, now at a total $332 million for North American theaters.
Third place goes to a new debut, Sarigama Cinemas’ “RRR.” ("Rise Roar Revolt" -- a fictional story about two Indian revolutionaries, which took in an estimated $9.5 million. With just 1,200 locations, it averaged a healthy per-theater average of $7,917.
Sony Pictures' "Uncharted," now in its sixth week, took in another $5 million -- now totaling $133.6 million.
Over the last four weeks, "The Lost City" has led all theatrical movies in estimated national TV impressions -- 680.7 million impressions, according to iSpot.tv. It has amassed 894.5 million impressions since starting its national TV ad campaign on February 4.
For its entire run, the movie has spent an estimated $27.2 million in national TV advertising -- $3.1 million over the past two weeks.
National TV advertising impressions for all movie spending during the first three months of this year are still less than half that of pre-pandemic first three months of 2019 -- 16.6 billion (from 43,388 total airings), down from 36.6 billion in 2019 (108,414 airings).
However, total estimated spend for theatrical movies in the first three months of this year is virtually at the same level as in 2019 -- an estimated $367 million, according to iSpot.tv, compared to 368.5 million in 2019).
This year’s spend is four times that of last year’s total of $87.8 million -- reflecting a period still deep in pandemic-related disruptions.