Put on a happy face: In its fourth weekend in theaters, Warner Bros.’ “Joker” returned to the top of domestic box office charts, narrowly defeating Disney’s “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil.”
The two villains had been in a close race for first place, but Sunday estimates show “Joker” will walk away victorious with $18.9 million in ticket sales. Those rankings could change Monday morning after final tallies are reported since “Maleficent 2” is close behind with $18.5 million.
The surprise (and non-consecutive) win highlights the impressive endurance of “Joker,” which is only the third movie this year — following Universal’s “Glass” and Disney’s “Avengers: Endgame” — to secure in first place during three weekends. “Joker” recently became the most successful R-rated movie in history, collecting $849 million worldwide. Joaquin Phoenix’s gritty take on Batman’s infamous nemesis has generated $277 million in North America and $571 million at the international box office.
Since debuting last No. 1 to a disappointing $36 million, Angelina Jolie’s “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” has generated a lackluster $65 million at the domestic box office. The dark fantasy sequel continues to be a bigger player overseas, where it pulled in another $64.3 million for an international haul of $228 million. Globally, the “Maleficent” follow-up is nearing the $300 million mark.
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