Sonic On Top for 2nd Week While Dolittle Hits No. 2 During Half-Term – UK Box Office Report

This week we have seen a rise in success for family friendly adventure/comedies in UK cinemas due to the school holidays. 

Sonic the Hedgehog dropped 11.8% from last week (£4.76m), but with a strong £4.2m earning this weekend it still had enough to hold on to the UK box office’s top spot – its 11.8% drop being one of the most impressive week-to-week audience holds of the past 12 months.

Ahead of Sonic, the most recent video game adaptation to hit the big screen was Detective Pikachu back in 2019, totaling at £13.6m in the UK over the course of its entire run. Sonic has already easily surpassed the Warner Bros movie with a total standing at £14.6m and with a few more weeks of 7-figure earnings likely to follow. This makes Sonic the Hedgehog the most successful video game adaptation to date; a sequel reportedly already in the works as a result.

Elsewhere in the chart, Dolittle took a drop of 30% from last week (£3.01 million), yet has found itself in second place with this weekend’s earnings of £2.03 million. Robert Downey Jr’s portrayal as the welsh vet is enough to make audiences up and down the country watch this star-studded adventure-comedy. Close behind Sonic at £14.1m for its overall run, it is comfortably sat at number 4 on the highest grossing films in the UK for 2020; a fact that studio Universal Pictures will welcome given its relatively poor North American and International performance – at $200million worldwide, it has only just surpassed its production budget of $175million.

After 7 weeks of release, BAFTA Best Picture winner 1917 still features in this week’s top ten, and sits happily as the highest grossing film of the year to date. This weekend’s £1.1m adds to the ever-growing total of £41.6m for this World War I epic – audiences are clearly going back for more of Sam Mendes’ critically acclaimed drama. 

Weekend UK box office chart 21st – 23rd February 2020:

Film title Weeks of release Weekend total Total UK box-office to date
1. Sonic the Hedgehog (Paramount) 2 £4,171,243 £14,688,537
2. Dolittle (Universal) 3 £2,032,270 £14,066,921
3. Parasite (StudioCanal) 3 £1,722,236 £8,397,639
4. Call of the Wild (Walt Disney Studios) 1 £1,465,400 £1,465,400
5. Emma. (Universal) 2 £1,156,255 £4,571,310
6. 1917 (Entertainment One) 7 £1,083,286 £41,616,330
7. Birds of Prey (Warner Bros.) 3 £772,416 £7,706,341
8. Like a Boss (Paramount) 1 £520,059 £520,059
9. Brahms: The Boy II (Entertainment Films) 1 £506,773 £506,773
10. Bad Boys For Life (Sony) 6 £432,194 £15,281,621

The highest grossing UK films of 2020 thus far:

Film title Release date Total
1. 1917 10th January 2020 £41.6 million
2. Bad Boys For Life 17th January 2020 £15.2 million
3. Sonic the Hedgehog 14th February 2020 £14.6 million
4. Dolittle 7th February 2020 £14.1 million
5. The Gentlemen 1st January 2020 £11.6 million

After 2019 was dubbed “The year of Disney” with successes such as Avengers: Endgame, The Lion King and Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker, the studio giant has had a seemingly quiet start to the year as Universal take a strong hold of the top ten. This week Dolittle and Emma., both Universal pictures, make it to the top ten, where new Disney/Fox release Call of the Wild is the only Disney release to feature. This is all likely to change in the upcoming months with Disney releases Mulan and Pixar co-production Onward heading into cinemas. 



This coming weekend sees many new releases that are sure to be successes at the UK box office. 

This Friday, the much anticipated The Invisible Man is having a worldwide release, and with a surprisingly low budget of just $7m it is likely to do well at the box office.

A contemporary adaptation of the novel of the same name by H.G Wells, and a remake of the 1933 classic, The Invisible Man stars Elisabeth Moss as the victim of her ex-husband who has found a way to make himself invisible and threaten her in the most terrifying ways. 

New biographical drama Dark Waters opens in the UK this Friday (28th). After a successful opening in North America back in November 2019 ($11.2m), this Todd Haynes directed film starring Mark Ruffalo and Anne Hathaway, seems likely to do well should audiences be found to still have a taste for an Oscar-like drama. Other films of a similar nature such as 2019’s Official Secrets (£2.4m) and Just Mercy (£1.5m), reflect that there is an audience for law based dramas here in the UK.

Will Ferrell and Julia Louis-Dreyfus star in Downhill, a black comedy from the directors of The Way Way Back. Downhill is remake of the Swedish film Force Majeure and follows a family as they encounter a near death experience whilst holidaying in the Alps. Force Majeure opened in October 2014 with a worldwide release of £3.1m, a total that Downhill has already surpassed with a domestic opening of $7.4m and an expected big release here in the UK this Friday. 

Two independent films will also be getting their UK release this week after both receiving critical acclaim at festivals and preview screenings; Portrait of a Lady on Fire and The True History of the Kelly Gang will both be released in select cinemas this Friday (28th). 

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Charlie Gardiner
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