Curiosity–perhaps stemming from fear–helped earthquake disaster film San Andreas make a killing at the box office, scoring it a seismic $52.3 million on opening weekend. Nineteen of the 20 top-grossing movie theaters were located in California’s Bay Area and the greater Los Angeles region, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Those two areas are the most earthquake-prone in the country.
One New York theater also received a flood of ticket sales for the film. The east coast has also been experiencing an unusual amount of seismic activity over the past two years.
“You never see this. Some of the naysayers said people living in these places would be too scared to see San Andreas. Obviously, they were wrong,” Dan Fellman, president of domestic distribution at Warner Bros told THR.
Traffic was up nearly 71% above the norm in San Francisco, 62% in Los Angeles, 67% in Las Vegas and 32% in Phoenix, THR notes. Hollywood beau Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson also appeared to be a big incentive for the rise in ticket sales–which reportedly skewed 51% female, with 70% of those purchasers being over the age of 25.
“Johnson is clearly one of the most bankable stars working today,” senior media analyst at Rentrak Paul Dergarabedian said in an interview with Variety.
San Andreas also reportedly grossed $60 million internationally.
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