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Jordan Peele

No, Jordan Peele’s “Nope” is not a flop at the box office.

Jordan Peele, of all the directors, shouldn’t be surprised that the talk about how well “Nope” did at the box office has brought up a lot of hot takes.


The director’s cerebral science-fiction thriller made $44 million in its first weekend at the box office. It easily topped the domestic charts and had one of the biggest opening weekends for a film that wasn’t based on an existing IP in years.


Even so, people are still talking about the movie’s first weekend in theatres, with some saying that “Nope’s” first weekend numbers were “disappointing” or “lackluster.” “Nope” made a lot of money in its first weekend, just like any good Peele movie. And to be fair, the movie had a lot to live up to at the box office. Daniel Kaluuya and Keke Palmer played siblings who find something scary on their family’s ranch.


A senior ComScore analyst named Paul Dergarabedian says, “The bar has been set so high.”

People have a lot of hopes for Peele’s new movie because of his last movie, “Us,” a horror movie about people who look like them. Since “Us’s” $71 million opening weekend was much bigger than expected, box office watchers were hopeful that “Nope’s” $45 million to $55 million opening weekend estimates would also be crushed. Even though “Nope’s” first weekend wasn’t even close to what “Us’s” was, $44 million is a good start for an original R-rated movie.


When it comes to new ideas, you would have to go back to early 2019 when “Us” came out to find a movie with a more successful opening weekend that had an original screenplay. That means “Nope” got off to a better start than new movies from some well-known directors, like Quentin Tarantino’s star-studded “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” ($41 million in July 2019), Rian Johnson’s murder mystery “Knives Out” ($26 million in November 2019), Christopher Nolan’s mind-bending “Tenet” ($9 million in August 2020, when the pandemic is at its worst), M. Night Shyamalan’s


Jeff Bock, an analyst with Exhibitor Relations, says that the huge opening weekend for “Us” is an outlier. “It’s not fair to compare what came before ‘Nope’ just because it was made by the same person.”


The excitement for “Us” was through the roof because it was Peele’s follow-up to “Get Out,” which won an Oscar and was a cultural phenomenon that people talked about for months. It’s not surprising that a lot of people went to see the director’s second movie, a nightmare that makes people nervous. Peele’s third full-length movie showed that audiences liked him a lot, but “Nope” brought box office expectations back down to Earth.


David A. Gross, who runs the movie consulting firm Franchise Entertainment Research, says, “The opening isn’t as big as ‘Us,’ but it’s still very impressive.” “The weekend number is a lot higher than usual for the genre.”


Analysts of the box office, however, say that “Nope” is by far Peele’s most expensive movie. The movie cost $68 million, which is a lot more than “Get Out,” which cost $4.5 million, and “Us,” which cost $20 million. $68 million is a lot of money for a horror movie, and that doesn’t include marketing or other promotion costs, so “Nope” will have to do well at the box office for a long time to pay for itself.


Peele’s first two movies, “Get Out” and “Us,” took very different paths to make $175 million in the U.S. and $255 million around the world. “Get Out” had a smaller opening, and people talked about it a lot, so it stayed in theatres for a while. “Us,” on the other hand, made most of its money during its first weekend in theatres. Since these movies cost less to make, there wasn’t much at stake when it came to making money.


Horror movies usually don’t sell as many tickets after the first weekend, but “Get Out” and Blumhouse’s twisted thriller “The Black Phone” were exceptions. In this way, word-of-mouth will be very important for “Nope,” which won’t be out in theatres around the world until the middle of August. “Nope” got good reviews from critics, but audiences only gave it a “B” CinemaScore, the same grade as “Us.” (Peele likes to make his audiences feel uneasy, which could explain why the exit polls aren’t all that happy.) “Get Out,” on the other hand, got an “A-.”


It also helps that it only has to compete at the box office with B.J. Novak’s true-crime-based “Vengeance” (July 29) and David Leitch’s star-studded “Bullet Train” (August 5).

“It’s not about the opening weekend for Jordan Peele. “It’s all about buzz and word of mouth,” says Dergarabedian. “It’s a new movie, so people will need more time to find out about it.”

For Peele, “Nope” is proof that his name alone is enough to get people to go see his movies. He has had the top three opening weekends at the box office, and his movies have made more than $550 million at the box office around the world. He is very important to Hollywood because he makes scary movies that also make people think… and talk about them. Every time Peele makes a new movie, there are at least a dozen articles that go over every detail to figure out what the ending means. Today, when comic book movies and mindless action-packed blockbusters are often at the top of the box office charts, dialogue like that is rare.


Exit polls show that Peele has become very important because his movies are liked by people of all ages and backgrounds. PostTrak says that about 35% of the people who bought tickets were white, 20% were Hispanic, 33% were African American, and 8% were Asian. About 68% of the audience was between 18 and 32 years old.


There is also data to show that Peele’s brand is getting more and more popular. PostTrak says that 22 percent of people who went to see “Get Out” did so because of the director. By the time “Us” came out in theatres, that number had grown to 40 percent, and a shocking 56 percent of people who saw “Nope” said they did so because of the director.


Dergarabedian says, “Those are Tarantino, Wes Anderson, and Steven Spielberg numbers.” He means that only a few directors have that kind of power. “He has caused such a huge stir.”

Nicole Cherie Hesse

Nicole Cherie Hesse is a Journalist at Flaunt Weekly.

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