But sometime on Saturday, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, which grossed $4.4 million on Friday, will overtake Wirkola’s home invasion comedy-thriller and win the weekend with $16 million (give or take) from 3,855 locations. Violent Night will place second with a projected $11.5 million to $12 million, a pleasing start.
From Universal and 87North, the genre film follows a team of mercenaries who break into the wealthy Lightstone family compound on Christmas Eve, taking everyone inside hostage. But they aren’t prepared for a surprise combatant: Santa Claus (David Harbour), who proves that Nick is no saint.
Violent Night — earning a respectable B+ CinemaScore — also stars Emmy winner John Leguizamo as Scrooge, the leader of the mercenaries. Other castmembers include Alex Hassell, Alexis Louder, Leah Brady, Edi Patterson, Cam Gigandet and Beverly D’Angelo.
Otherwise, it’s a mostly frosty weekend in terms of moviegoing. Revenue is expected to be down even from 2021, when the pandemic was more of an issue for consumers. Disney’s animated pic Strange World continues to struggle and may only earn $4.5 million in its second weekend.
Searchlight’s The Menu should follow Strange World with an estimated $3.6 million from 2,810 theaters, while Sony and Black Label Media’s Devotion is expected to round out the top five with around $2.5 million to $2.8 million in its sophomore session.