This past weekend at the box office was a case of counterprogramming to the extreme. According to studio estimates Sunday, the R-rated horror comedy “Cocaine Bear” snagged $23.1 million in its opening weekend, while Marvel's “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” earned $32.2 million in its second weekend.
The “Ant-Man” sequel experienced a steep 69.7% drop in its second weekend, the worst decline for an MCU film, falling faster than “Black Widow” (67.8%). This may be attributed to its poor reviews and audience scores. In contrast, “Cocaine Bear” surprised many with its success, exceeding expectations with a $35 million budget and a trailer watched globally by more than 90 million people. The movie is based on a real-life story of a bear that died in the Georgia mountains in 1985 after eating a duffle bag of cocaine that had fallen from a smuggler's plane.
Meanwhile, Lionsgate's “Jesus Revolution” also opened strongly, raking in $15.5 million over the weekend and in advance screenings. The movie stars Kelsey Grammer and Joel Courtney and dramatizes the movement of Christian hippies in the late '60s and early ’70s. It earned an A+ CinemaScore and proved popular with Christian audiences.
Overall, the weekend's box office was dominated by two very different films, both of which exceeded expectations. While “Cocaine Bear” managed to turn a bizarre true-life tale into a tongue-in-cheek box office hit, “Jesus Revolution” was a hit with Christian moviegoers. Next week, Michael B. Jordan's “Creed III" is expected to take the top spot.