While estimates were trending upwards in recent weeks, the big screen revival of the popular TV drama Downton Abbey delivered a rather stunning $31M, taking down silver screen stars Brad Pitt and Sylvester Stallone with nearly double the per-screen average for an impressive weekend win. How Downton will fare down the stretch remains to be seen, but even if this opening represents a front-loaded performance Abbey is suddenly a potential Top 10 contender for the season.
Shooting into second place, Brad Pitt's sci-fi drama Ad Astra launched with $19.2M. Far from Pitt's greatest opening, but a solid start and in line with most of his non-tentpole/even film work and by far director James Gray's most profitable premiere, Ad Astra will need to leg out some strong holds to crack the Top 10.
In third place, the fifth (and final) chapter in Sylvester Stallone's Rambo series, Rambo: Last Blood, racked up a $19M opening. That's right around what the 2008 entry managed ($18.2M) which would put Last Blood on a trajectory for a total take in the low $40M range and almost certainly out of Top 10 contention.
Dropping into fourth place in its third weekend, It: Chapter 2 was down 56.5% with $17.2M to give it a new 17-day total of $179.2M.
In fifth place, Hustlers held well in its second weekend with $17M (down 48.8%). Through 10 days the surprise smash has already earned $62.6M.