Alex Garland’s ‘Civil War’ ignites Box Office, shatters A24 records

Alex Garland’s dystopian thriller “Civil War” has defied expectations with a $25.7 million opening weekend, becoming A24’s highest-grossing debut and the year’s biggest R-rated start. 

The film, starring Kirsten Dunst, explores a violently divided US and has sparked intense curiosity among audiences. “Civil War” particularly resonated in markets like Los Angeles and El Paso, Texas.

Despite a “B-” CinemaScore, A24’s track record of thought-provoking films has proven successful. While the $50 million production cost is the studio’s highest to date, foreign market sales will help recoup the investment.

“This is an excellent opening for a dystopian thriller,” says David A. Gross of Franchise Entertainment Research. “The story is not directly partisan, but it’s provoking partisan feelings. It’s a fine balance to strike. Audiences are emotionally engaged, and that’s impressive for a thriller.”

Overall box office performance remains behind pre-pandemic levels. “Civil War” faced little competition, with holdovers like “Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire” and “Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire” rounding out the top spots.

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