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'Tom & Jerry' gives box office some life with $13.7M opening

'Tom & Jerry' gives box office some life with $13.7M
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A not-so-distant recovery for movie theaters could be glimpsed Sunday, as Warner Bros.’ live-action-animation hybrid “Tom & Jerry” debuted with $13.7 million in ticket sales, the best domestic opening of the year.

The better-than-expected opening came despite just 42% of U.S. theaters being open, according to data firm comScore. “Tom & Jerry” also played in 2,475 North American cinemas simultaneously as it did in the home, where it’s streaming on HBO Max for a month.

Yet “Tom & Jerry” still managed the second-best opening of the pandemic following Warner Bros.’ “Wonder Woman 1984,” which launched with $16.7 million in December while also landing on HBO Max. The next-closest debuts — “Tenet,” “The Croods: A New Age” — eked out about $10 million on opening weekend.

“With half of theaters still closed, the pandemic still a threat, and ‘Tom & Jerry’ available at home, this is a very good opening,” said David A. Gross, who runs the movie consulting firm Franchise Entertainment Research. “Under normal circumstances, this weekend would comfortably be above $35 million — a positive sign for the business and for theatrical’s pull over home entertainment.”

“Tom & Jerry” has also made $25.1 million internationally, bringing its worldwide total to $38.8 million, according to studio estimates. The film, directed by Tim Story and based on the characters created by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera, stars Chloë Grace Moretz.

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