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Box Office: 'Furiosa' Just Barely Beats 'The Garfield Movie' in Disastrous Memorial Day Weekend — the Worst in Decades

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Garfield has another reason to hate Mondays.

In a box office nail biter, "Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga" narrowly emerged victorious over "The Garfield Movie" on North American charts. On Sunday, Warner Bros. and Sony both claimed its own movie ranked No. 1 with roughly $25 million over the weekend and an estimated $31 million through the Memorial Day holiday on Monday.

With Monday's estimates, "Furiosa" ended up generating $26.2 million over the weekend and $32 million for the four days. "Garfield" was shockingly close behind with $24 million over the weekend and $31.1 million over the four days.

No matter the final order, it's the worst Memorial Day weekend in nearly three decades — excluding 2020 when theaters were entirely closed due to COVID. Box office comparisons to the same holiday weekend in 2023 are particularly tough — down by nearly 36% — given that Disney's "The Little Mermaid" remake took the crown with $118 million, one of the best debuts for the holiday. Overall, this Memorial Day stretch adds to Hollywood's summer woes as ticket sales remain 22% behind 2023 and a concerning 41% behind 2019, according to Comscore.

It's a particularly disappointing showing for "Furiosa," the fifth entry in director George Miller's post-apocalyptic "Mad Max" series. The R-rated film, which stars Anya Taylor-Joy and Chris Hemsworth, was expected to lead with $40 million to $45 million over the holiday stretch. And even that wouldn't have been a stellar start given the film's $168 million price tag. Globally, "Furiosa" has earned $65 million. At this rate, it'll struggle to live up to the franchise's previous entry, 2015's "Mad Max: Fury Road," starring Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron, which opened to $45 million (not during a holiday weekend) and ultimately grossed a modest $380 million globally. Despite great reviews, analysts believe that "Furiosa" faltered because prequels rarely do as well as direct sequels, especially when they don't have the original stars. And this action epic failed to expand beyond its core demographic of older male moviegoers.

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For "Garfield," which cost $60 million, it's a decent start for a family film while arriving on the lower end of projections of $30 million to $35 million. The movie has already generated $66.3 million overseas and $91.1 million globally, so it's well positioned in its theatrical run. Chris Pratt voices the titular cat who hates Mondays and loves lasagna in "The Garfield Movie," which was financed and produced by Alcon Entertainment.

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