Box Office: ‘Tenet’ Crossing $100 Million Internationally

Christopher Nolan’s “Tenet” will cross the $100 million mark internationally on Saturday. The twisty thriller has made just over $20 million in China so far this weekend.

The Chinese historical war epic “The Eight Hundred” is currently jockeying with “Tenet” for first place at the box office in the Middle Kingdom. Warner Bros., the studio behind “Tenet,” is not releasing domestic numbers until Sunday. The film opened in the U.S. this week, but will not screen in major markets such as Los Angeles and New York City where theaters remain closed due to coronavirus.

The film has been seen as an important test for the hard-hit exhibition business. Theater owners are pegging a larger re-opening to “Tenet” and believe that Nolan’s reputation for delivering sprawling, visually-stunning adventures will help reinvigorate a business that has been largely shuttered since March when the virus upended life. It’s unclear if enough theaters will be open for Warner Bros. to turn a profit on “Tenet,” which cost close to $200 million. However, the expectation is that the movie will gross north of $20 million in the U.S. in its inaugural weekend. The hope is that with little competition, “Tenet” will be able to show impressive endurance, ultimately putting up a gross that pushes it into the black.

In the U.S., Fox and Disney’s “The New Mutants” grossed $800,000 on Friday, bringing the superhero film’s total to $9.5 million. Searchlight’s “The Personal History of David Copperfield” netted $100,000, pushing its total to $763,473.

“Tenet” stars John David Washington, Robert Pattinson, Kenneth Branagh, and Elizabeth Debecki. The strong overseas results are welcome news for Warner Bros., which is dealing with a headache related to the production on “The Batman.”