Coming in with a weekend gross of $38 million it is by far the lowest grossing debut for a film in the series, a series which has corroded far faster than many other. The first "Fifty Shades of Grey" opened in 2015 with $85 million domestically before grossing $571 million in global box-office receipts. The film received largely negative reviews from critics but a so-so B-plus CinemaScore from moviegoers.
Overall the marketplace is still down around 1.8 percent for the year and around 27 percent from the same weekend last year, which, comScore senior media analyst Paul Dergarabedian notes, saw the launch of "The Lego Batman Movie, " "Fifty Shades Darker',' and "John Wick: Chapter 2, " all of which opened over $30 million".
"We are exhilarated with the results", said Jim Orr of the franchise's distributor, Universal Pictures.
Indeed, younger female audience members were the driving force in pushing the three Fifty Shades films to their current collective worldwide total of US$1.09 billion. But ticket sales for the final movie adaptation were solid, declining only 16 percent from initial results for its series predecessor, "Fifty Shades Darker", a year ago.
Based on Beatrix Potter's children's stories about a mischievous bunny, Peter Rabbit stars James Corden in the title role, along with Domhnall Gleeson, Rose Byrne, and Daisy Ridley. The film also earned mixed reviews, receiving an A- on CinemaScore and a 58% "rotten" on Rotten Tomatoes.
"The 15:17 To Paris", the third of this weekend's big new releases, follows at #3.
The dramatic thriller is about the true story of three American soldiers and lifelong pals as they thwart a terrorist attack on a train.
Clint Eastwood had a tougher weekend with "The 15:17 to Paris".
Rounding out the top five, Fox's "The Greatest Showman", also in its eighth week, added $6.4 million for a cumulative $146.5 million.
Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle, starring Dwayne Johnson and Jack Black, fell from No. 1 to fourth place with $9.8 million in it's eighth week on release, bringing its domestic take to healthy $365.6 million. Internationally, it added a further $98.1 million from worldwide markets.