Lions Gate -3.1% as 'Allegiant' disappoints

|By:, SA News Editor

Lions Gate Entertainment (NYSE:LGF) is off 3.1% after Allegiant -- its latest hope for young-adult franchise success -- faded over the weekend in the face of Zootopia.

Expected to compete with Zootopia (NYSE:DIS) for the box office lead, Allegiant (the latest in the Divergent series) grossed $29M for the No. 2 spot. Zootopia's $38M gave it its third straight weekend on top.

Allegiant's flat weekend led Stifel Nicolaus to downgrade LGF shares, to Hold from Buy. The Divergent series has been heavily watched by investors looking to see whether Lions Gate will duplicate its successes from its Twilight and The Hunger Games film series. Last week, Macquarie had reduced its price target on Lions Gate to $31 (maintaining its Outperform rating); shares are trading currently at $21.92.

For its part, Zootopia has a cumulative domestic gross of $201.8M and a worldwide total of $591.7M.

Allegiant did outpace the other wide-release newcomer, Miracles from Heaven (NYSE:SNE), which fell into No. 3 with $15M, just ahead of 10 Cloverfield Lane (VIA, VIAB) with $12.5M and Deadpool (FOX, FOXA) with $8M in its sixth week.

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