Bad Boys for Life
Let’s make one thing clear up front before the headline causes too much confusion: no movie ever released during the month of January has made $100 million that same month.
Now, of course, plenty of movies have grossed upwards of $100 million during the month of January. Notably one of the more dour periods for quality movies, we often see viral December releases pouring over into January and dominating the competition, such as Avatar (which made $312.1 million in the year’s first month), American Sniper ($242.2 million) and Raiders of the Lost Ark ($163.2 million).
But because many mediocre films pour into that first month, it is much less common for a January release to even near the $100 million mark over the course of its entire domestic run, let alone during that first month. Last decade, only four movies periods—Ride Alone, Kung Fu Panda 3, Split and Glass—eclipsed the $100 million mark during their U.S. runs, and only five January-released movies ever have accomplished the feat period (without accounting for inflation).
In fact, no movie released in January has ever secured $100 million in that first calendar month.
That is until Bad Boys for Life hit theaters.
Not only will the Will Smith/Martin Lawrence vehicle be the first film to make $100 million in the calendar month of January, but it’ll also easily become the highest-grossing movie ever released in the first month of the year.
With a projected $28.8 million weekend from Box Office Mojo, the Will Smith-headed Bad Boys for Life is looking at a $115 million ten-day opening. And by the end of the month, the Bad Boys sequel will have earned about $125 million.
If that’s true, then the Will Smith movie have skyrocketed past the competition without much effort. Here’s a quick ranking of the highest-earning Januaries ever for a movie released in that month:
- Bad Boys for Life ($125 million (projected))
- Ride Along ($84.6 million)
- Split ($81.1 million)
- Taken 3 ($80.9 million)
- Paul Blart: Mall Cop ($80.7 million)
- Glass ($79.1 million)
- The Green Hornet ($79.1 million)
- The Book of Eli ($74.5 million)
- Save the Last Dance ($66 million)
- Cloverfield ($67.1 million)
As you can see, it’s not even close. And Bad Boys for Life’s stellar showing is going to help push the January 2020 box office past the $400 million mark—which has only been done five times before. When all is said and done, this month will either rank as the second- or third-best January for the box office ever.
At this pace, Bad Boys for Life will easily make over $200 million, which will also easily become the highest lifetime gross for any January release ever. Here is the current top ten:
- Paul Blart: Mall Cop ($146.3 million)
- Kung Fu Panda 3 ($143.5 million)
- Split ($138.3 million)
- Ride Alone ($135 million)
- Glass ($111 million)
- The Green Hornet ($98.8 million)
- The Book of Eli ($94.8 million)
- Save the Last Dance ($91.1 million)
- Taken 3 ($89.3 million)
- Along Came Polly ($88.1 million)
That list is full of poorly reviewed movies dumped over from the previous year. That’s the difference with Bad Boys for Life, which received favorable coverage and saw the reunion of Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. At this point, the sky is the limit for the biggest January release ever.