The Elizabeth Banks-directed horror comedy has surpassed box office projections.
The crazy premise and consistent marketing campaign for Elizabeth Banks‘ Cocaine Bear have paid off in a big way as the film has made a strong impact at the box office in its first weekend, surpassing the original projection for the film’s opening. The new action comedy film has brought in a strong $28 million worldwide.
Releasing on Friday, February 24, Cocaine Bear topped the Friday Box Office chart on its first day in theaters with $8.6 million (including $2 million from Thursday previews). The film has now gone on to bring in just over $23 million at the Domestic box office for its opening weekend. Cocaine Bear was originally expected to earn between $15 million and $17 million in its first three days, so this is an extremely positive outcome for Universal.
Moving to international markets, the film pulled in $5.3 million from 50 markets, with the UK and Ireland making up the most of that number with a strong $2 million opening weekend., finishing in 3rd place at the box office in the market. Cocaine Bear‘s turnout makes it the biggest R-rated original comedy in the market since Baywatch in 2017. Australia came in second, bringing $1 million across 243 locations. Reviews and word of mouth saw the film’s performance grow over the weekend, ending at the No. 2 spot at the box office in the region and taking up 21% of the Top 10.
RELATED: ‘Cocaine Bear’ Review: Elizabeth Banks Goes All-In With Absurdity, Violence, Humor, and Nose Candy
Both the Netherlands and Norway opened strong as well, with the former delivering $278K and the film ending up at No. 5 in the Netherlands while Norway ended up bringing in $157K across 150 screens. Cocaine Bear ended with $151K and fifth place in the Sweden, with early shows delivering particularly strong results, showing a connection with the young comedy audience that will also drive business through Stockholm’s winter break starting on Monday. In Saudi Arabia, Cocaine Bear brought in a good $148K for the weekend. The film did not open in Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, and Oman, softening results across the Middle East.
The True Story Behind ‘Cocaine Bear’
The story of Cocaine Bear takes inspiration from a real story where 40 kilos of cocaine got lost from a plane transporting narcotics during a drug run from Columbia and crashed over Chattahoochee National Forest in Georgia. A black bear in the forest found the contraband and devoured it. Authorities later found the bear dead in the forest, with the cause of death being ruled to as one of history’s largest drug overdoses ever. The now-stuffed bear is on display in Lexington, Kentucky with the nickname of “Pablo EscoBear” and is a unique tourist attraction.
Cocaine Bear is now available in theaters. Check out Collider’s interview with the film’s director, Elizabeth Banks, and the official synopsis for the film down below:
Inspired by the 1985 true story of a drug runner’s plane crash, missing cocaine, and the black bear that ate it, this wild dark comedy finds an oddball group of cops, criminals, tourists and teens converging in a Georgia forest where a 500- pound apex predator has ingested a staggering amount of cocaine and gone on a coke-fueled rampage for more blow… and blood.