In a surprise upset, How to Be a Latin Lover is beating The Circle at the North American box office, although no new film will be able to run The Fate of the Furious off the road.
Fate of the Furious will stay atop the chart in its third weekend with an estimated $18.5 million for a domestic total of $192 million through Sunday and more than $1 billion globally. The action pic grossed $5.1 million Friday.
How to Be a Latin Lover followed with a Friday haul of $3.9 million from 1,000 locations for a projected $12 million weekend, well ahead of expectations. The comedy stars popular Mexican actor Eugenio Derbez opposite Salma Hayek and is from Pantelion Films, a joint venture of Lionsgate and Televisa.
Derbez, whose 2013 film Instructions Not Included was a sleeper hit, boasts a devoted fan base. The film follows Derbez as a man who made a career of seducing rich older women who finds himself dumped after 25 years of marriage and must move in with his estranged sister. Rob Lowe, Kristen Bell, Raphael Alejandro, Raquel Welch and Rob Riggle also star in the film, which earned an A CinemaScore.
Directed by James Ponsoldt, The Circle has a far wider footprint but is getting skewered by a rare D+ CinemaScore. The $18 million movie, starring Beauty and the Beast's Emma Watson and Tom Hanks, earned a meager $3.2 million Friday from 3,163 theaters for a $9 million debut.
The Circle, from EuropaCorp, is set in the near future at a tech company called The Circle, where a new employee (Watson) uncovers a dark agenda that will affect the lives of her friends, family and society at large. It debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival Wednesday. EuropaCorp acquired the project for $8 million from producers Parkes+MacDonald and Image Nation Abu Dhabi, with STX handling domestic distribution duties.
Like How to Be Latin Lover, Indian pic Baahubali: The Connection is also impressing despite smaller footprint. The sequel to the 2015 blockbuster even beat The Circle Friday with $4.5 million from 450 theaters. For the weekend, it is expected to come in at $8.5 million.
Elsewhere, Blumhouse's genre label BH Tilt is releasing Sleight, a thriller about a street magician that had a strong debut at Sundance in February. The film is tracking to earn $1.5 million from 500 theaters. Starring Jacob Latimore and Dule Hill, the film revolves around a young street magician who must use his wits and tricks to save his sister from kidnappers. It's helmed by J.D. Dillard.
The big headline overseas this weekend will be Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, which is opening in 37 markets a week ahead of landing in North America, where it kicks off the summer box office season on May 5. The superhero sequel is projected to take in $90 million-$100 million in is foreign debut after earning $22 million Tuesday-Thursday in a smattering of markets.
April 28, 12:45 p.m. Updated with revised weekend projections.
April 29, 7:50 a.m. Updated with revised weekend projections and Friday numbers.