Bob Odenkirk's Nobody debuts at top of US box office; Godzilla vs Kong roars overseas

Los Angeles

BOB Odenkirk, action star? It's a premise so unexpected, so curious, that it just might have enticed audiences to watch Nobody, a revenge thriller that sees an otherwise unassuming Odenkirk - who acted in Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul - kick ass and take names.

Nobody debuted atop the North American box office charts over the weekend, generating US$6.7 million from 2,460 venues. It's a solid but not stellar start as movie theatres in Los Angeles and around the US begin to reopen in earnest.

Directed by Ilya Naishuller, Nobody was well received by critics and audiences. It centres on a mild-mannered suburban dad who goes into vigilante mode after someone breaks into his house.

At the international box office, Nobody added another US$5 million, boosting its worldwide haul to US$11.7 million.

With solid word-of-mouth and without notable competition, Nobody is primed to stick around on the big screen before Universal puts the film on premium video-on-demand in a matter of weeks. The budget was just US$16 million, so it should not be difficult to get out of the red.

Although Nobody easily topped box office charts in the US, the film was hardly the biggest winner of the weekend. Outside of North America, Godzilla vs Kong kicked off internationally with a massive US$121 million from 28 countries.

The Warner Bros movie - pitting the iconic monsters against each other in the matchup for the ages - had an especially impressive start in China, where it amassed US$70.3 million over the three- day stretch. Ticket sales for Godzilla vs Kong, a co-production with Legendary Entertainment, mark the biggest opening weekend in China for a non-local film. That could bode well as the film gears up to open in the US on Wednesday in theatres and on HBO Max.

Aside from Godzilla vs Kong and another Warner Bros movie - video game adaptation Mortal Kombat (due for release in Singapore on April 8) - US movie theatre marquees will be light on new releases in early spring.

That's because Disney made a major overhaul of its film calendar last week, delaying or amending plans for several titles, including Black Widow, Emma Stone's Cruella, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, and Pixar's Luca In perhaps the biggest blow to cinema operators, Black Widow was pushed from May 7 to July 9. The Marvel superhero adventure will premiere simultaneously in theatres and on Disney Plus for a premium US$30 rental fee.

Cruella, an original story for the 101 Dalmatians villain, will similarly launch theatrically and on the company's streaming platform when it arrives on May 28.

Disney has tested several hybrid strategies amid the pandemic, most recently with the animated adventure Raya and the Last Dragon. The animated adventure, currently in cinemas, slipped to second place on box office charts with US$3.5 million in its fourth weekend of release. The film, which is also available to Disney Plus subscribers on Premier Access, has made US$28 million in US theatres and US$82 million globally.

Otherwise, a swath of holdovers rounded out box office charts. Tom and Jerry came in third place with US$2.5 million from 2,464 locations. After five weeks in theatres, the Warner Bros live-action-animated hybrid has amassed US$37 million.

At No 4 on last weekend's charts, Lionsgate's sci-fi fantasy film Chaos Walking pulled in US$1.18 million in the US for a tally of US$11.3 million. REUTERS

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