Sorry, Nic Cage. With ‘Bad Guys’ and ‘Sonic,’ animation rules domestic box office

A cartoon image of a wolf, a frog, a snake and a shark taking a selfie
Wolf (voiced by Sam Rockwell), left, Piranha (Anthony Ramos), Snake (Marc Maron), Tarantula (Awkwafina) and Shark (Craig Robinson) in DreamWorks Animation’s “The Bad Guys.”
(DreamWorks Animation)

DreamWorks Animation and Universal Pictures’ “The Bad Guys” debuted atop the domestic box office this weekend with $24 million, according to estimates from measurement firm Comscore.

Another animated film, Paramount Pictures’ “Sonic the Hedgehog 2,” nabbed second place in its third weekend, adding $15.2 million for a North American cumulative of $145.8 million. Rounding out the top three is Warner Bros.’ “Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore,” which sustained a 67% drop in ticket sales and grossed $14 million this weekend for a North American cumulative gross of $67.1 million.

Directed by Pierre Perifel, “The Bad Guys” centers on a band of former criminals — a wolf, a piranha, a snake, a tarantula and a shark — on a mission to improve their villainous reputations.


Nicolas Cage stars as himself in the meta action comedy “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent,” a concept that works as long as he’s on-screen.

April 20, 2022

Leading the star-studded voice cast of the cartoon adventure are Sam Rockwell, Anthony Ramos, Awkwafina, Marc Maron and Craig Robinson. The family film posted a solid 85% score on review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes and a favorable A grade from audiences polled by CinemaScore.

Also new to theaters this weekend were Focus Features’ “The Northman” and Lionsgate’s “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent,” which landed in fourth and fifth place, respectively. “The Northman” launched at $12 million domestically, while “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent” opened with $7.2 million.

Helmed by director Robert Eggers, “The Northman” stars Alexander Skarsgård as a Viking prince on a journey to avenge his father’s death.

Among the stacked supporting cast of the action flick are Anya Taylor-Joy, Claes Bang, Björk, Ethan Hawke, Willem Dafoe and Nicole Kidman. The period epic received a glowing 89% on Rotten Tomatoes and a lackluster B grade from audiences polled by CinemaScore.

Alexander Skarsgård is in full-blown Old Norse berserker mode, starring with Nicole Kidman and Ethan Hawke in Robert Eggers’ “The Northman.”

April 20, 2022

Finally, Tom Gormican’s “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent” stars Nicolas Cage as a fictional version of himself who must channel his most famous onscreen characters in order to rescue himself and his loved ones.

The cast of the meta comedy also boasts Pedro Pascal, Sharon Horgan, Ike Barinholtz, Alessandra Mastronardi, Jacob Scipio, Lily Sheen, Neil Patrick Harris and Tiffany Haddish. Tied with “The Northman,” the Cage vehicle notched an 89% on Rotten Tomatoes, as well as a B-plus from audiences polled by CinemaScore.


Opening in wide release next weekend is Open Road Films’ crime thriller “Memory,” starring Liam Neeson.