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Anime film takes No. 2 spot at box office

Worldwide phenomenan can't knock off 'Black Adam'

"One Piece Film: Red" surprised many by finishing No. 2 at the U.S. box office last weekend.

Greg W. Locke

Whatzup Features Writer

Published November 9, 2022

Ugh, the dreaded Black Adam. Once again this The Rock-led superhero flick has nabbed the No. 1 spot at the U.S. box office, selling another $18.5 million, despite being a truly awful piece of cinema. 

So far, Black Adam has garnered $137 million in the U.S. and just under $320 million worldwide. Good job, The Rock. When you run for president we’ll definitely all vote for good ‘ol Black Adam, the adult in tights.

Also at the box

Goro Taniguchi’s animated fantasy-action-adventure flick One Piece Film: Red (great job on the title, guys), surprised many by taking the No. 2 spot at the box office, selling $9.4 million in the U.S. over its first weekend. 

This one is selling big around the world, and is one of the highest grossing films in Japan ever. Ever. It’s been No. 1 at their box for 11-plus weeks. I’m happy for anime fans. You guys deserve little victories, too. 

Explain the appeal of anime to me by emailing me at I’m sincerely curious. I know anime, manga, etc. is a huge market around the world and I’ve just never understood the appeal despite trying to figure it out. To an old man like myself, it just looks like a bunch of people drawing in the exact same style. I know there’s something there, though. I want to “get” it. 

Charming Hollywood normie rom-com Ticket to Paradise took the No. 3 at the box, selling another $8.5 million, upping the George Clooney and Julia Roberts vehicle to a solid $47 million in the U.S. and $137 million worldwide. 

Those are very good numbers for a rom-com in 2022. I, for one, love a good rom-com. I hope this means more will get the green light. Am I crazy to say they should try to do another Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan picture? 

Smile and Prey for the Devil rounded out last weekend’s horror-heavy box office, selling right around $4 million apiece. 

Smile should hit the $100 million domestic mark ($200 million worldwide) any day now. Whoa. That’s a lot of money for an inexpensive flick. The magic of horror, I guess. 

Also of note, Martin McDonough’s The Banshees of Inisherin expanded over the weekend and ended up selling $2 million in the U.S. Not great numbers so far, considering this is the followup to McDonough’s Best Picture-winning Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.

New this week

This weekend is all about one movie: Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

I’m one of those people who didn’t get the appeal of the first one. I mean, I get the cultural significance and am happy it exists, but I did not think it was a great film. Here’s hoping this one is better. Even if it’s not, look for this one to do big money for the next several weeks, and likely get some Oscar nominations. Oh well. 

Also look out for some smaller releases, such as Bar Fight, Sam & Kate, Burning at Both Ends, A Couple, Rose All Day, Homebody, and The Pay Day

Oh, and some small movie called The Fabelmans, made by some guy named Steven Spielberg, will start to screen in major markets. Fingers crossed this one is amazing. I could go for a big, brilliant Spielberg film right now. He might be cheesy, but Spielberg also knows his way around the whole “movie magic” thing about as well as anyone. Ever. Also, wouldn’t it be great to see a film made for adults kill at the box office? I’m pretty sure none of the actors in this film have to wear tights or save the world. Hopefully that doesn’t chase you away.


This past weekend, I had a long subway ride. Lots of time to kill, so I started combing through a spreadsheet I keep of the films released in 2022, as well as a list of films coming out soon. I gotta say, this has been one of the worst years at the movies ever. Truly miserable. 

One good thing I did notice is a massive shift in diversity of filmmakers. Not only are non-white filmmakers finally getting funding for their films, but I’ve never seen so many female filmmaker names in my life. Wonderful. 

Hopefully, with COVID clearly calmed down, we can get the quality back up. Way up. 

Anyhow, stay tuned for your usual year-end ScreenTime lists.


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