By Brent Lang
LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - Melissa McCarthy pushed "Spy" to a $30 million debut in an otherwise humdrum weekend at the box office.
That was on the lower end of projections for the Fox espionage satire, which outfits globe-trotting intrigue with cat sweaters, but it was enough to dislodge last week's champ, "San Andreas," from its first place perch. The Warner Bros. disaster movie secured a second-place berth with $26.4 million, and has rumbled its way to a domestic total of $99 million in two weeks of release.
Overall, a weekend that saw three box office newcomers failed to generate enough heat to lift ticket sales to year-ago numbers when "Fault in Our Stars" debuted to $48 million. That's the third straight week of declines, but the streak will likely snap next weekend when "Jurassic World" is projected to roar to more than $100 million.
"Spy" cost $65 million to produce and rolled out across 3,711 locations. It reunites McCarthy and director Paul Feig, who have previously collaborated on "The Heat" and "Bridesmaids." Chernin Entertainment produced the film, which co-stars Jason Statham, Jude Law, and Rose Byrne.
Among new releases, Gramercy premiered "Insidious: Chapter 3," another low-budget package from horror impresario Jason Blum, to $23 million across 3,002 theaters. That's a third place finish, and, like other Blumhouse films such as "Sinister" and "The Purge," "Insidious: Chapter 3" will enjoy capacious profit margins. It cost a meager $10 million to produce and attracted a crowd that was 54% female and 69% under the age of 25.
"It's a very solid start," said Jim Orr, president of distribution for Focus Features, which maintains the Gramercy genre label. "Blumhouse just owns this space and they've crafted another incredibly scary movie."
After a five year absence, the stars of the long-running HBO series "Entourage" reunited for a big screen bacchanal that was savaged by critics. The thrill appears to be largely gone for the boys. "Entourage will make $17.8 million over its first five days in theaters and $10.4 million for the weekend, less than the $20 million that Warner Bros. had hoped to crack. Checking in on the state of Vincent Chase's career, liver, and sex life set Warner Bros. back a modest $27 million in production spending.
The opening weekend crowd was 64% male and 90% under the age of 50, perhaps the least surprising demographic data ever. Warner Bros. distribution chief Dan Fellman noted that the film's grosses moved up 3% on Saturday, a sign he argued that word-of-mouth is bolstering the picture.
"It's found its audience now," he said. "This little bit of a burst we saw gives us some momentum as we move into the heart of summer."