By Brent Lang
LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - "Pan" walked the plank over the Columbus Day Weekend.
Warner Bros. spent $150 million to bring the Neverland adventure to screens and millions more in marketing, but the big budget fantasy mustered a puny $15.5 million opening. That debut puts "Pan" alongside "The Fantastic Four" and "Tomorrowland" in the pantheon of the year's most punishing flops.
"It's a huge misfire," said Jeff Bock, box office analyst with Exhibitor Relations, adding, "We won't see another Peter Pan film for awhile."
"Pan's" backers weren't the only ones having a rough weekend. Sony's "The Walk" stumbled in its wide release, expanding from 448 Imax and premium large format theaters to more than 2,500 locations, and eking out $3.7 million in the process. The biopic about Philippe Petit's daring high-wire walk between the Twin Towers cost $35 million to produce and has clear Oscar ambitions. It has made $6.4 million in its initial two weeks in theaters.
With the new major studio releases teetering, Fox's "The Martian" stabilized overall ticket sales. The space thriller slipped a modest 32% in its second weekend, nabbing $37 million and pushing its domestic total to $108.7 million. Sony's "Hotel Transylvania 2" also showed impressive endurance, racking up $20.3 million in its third weekend and bringing its stateside haul to $116.8 million.
The top five was rounded out by Warner Bros.' "The Intern" and Lionsgate's "Sicario," which earned $8.7 million and $7.3 million, respectively. "The Intern" has generated $49.6 million in receipts, while "Sicario's" total stands at $26.7 million.
In limited release, Universal's "Steve Jobs" scored, pulling in $521,000 across four theaters for a per-screen average of $130,236. That ranks as the best theater average of the year.
Bruised by poor reviews and the continued strength of "Hotel Transylvania 2," "Pan" failed to deliver family crowds. Roughly 55% of its opening audience was female and 52% of ticket buyers were over 25 years old. The film rolled out across 3,515 locations. "Pan" was originally slated to open in July, but Warner Bros. pushed the film back into October citing the need for more time to complete the visual effects work. The film's cast includes Hugh Jackman, Rooney Mara, and Garrett Hedlund. Joe Wright, best known for prestige fare like "Atonement," directed the picture.