This weekend had to have been one of the more interesting ones to watch when it came to films. Not only did you have the potential start of a new franchise thanks to Universal but the sophomore weekend for a surprising comic book superhero. Were there any surprises this weekend worth note? Follow me after the click to find out!
Sometimes when you see a movie’s performance you just have to stop and say wow. Wonder Woman has defied the odds for a second weekend in a row with a 43.3% drop off from her opening weekend bring in an astounding $58.5 million. This is a rarity with comic book movies, folks, and is quite exciting to see. Normally comic book movies these days fall roughly 50%-60% from week one to week two. It is the second best drop for a comic book film since Spider-Man 2 back in 2002 which was 48.7%! We don’t see comic book movies carry over well into their second weekends usually because the opening day crowd is all the people who want to see the film and it slowly starts to bottom out. Wonder Woman also breaks the DCEU curse as the first 3 films in the franchise all fell between 65% and 69% on their second weekends. In fact, the film brought in more money this weekend than Man of Steel ($41 million), Suicide Squad ($43 million) AND Batman v Superman ($51 million). There isn’t a single Marvel Cinematic Universe film to have had that low of a drop off and the closest was the first Thor film which fell 47.2% although the film had nowhere near the same opening weekend ($65 million). Domestically the film climbs up to $206 million and if it were to be ranked among the Marvel films it would be 11th in domestic gross. Wonder Woman has already out performed the entire theater run of the following MCU films: The Incredible Hulk ($134 million), Captain America: The First Avenger ($176 million), Ant-Man ($180 million), Thor ($181 million), and Thor: The Dark World ($206.3 million). This film has only been out for 2 weeks, folks. I’ve seen several predictions that this film could climb up to $350 million domestically but I’ll hold out and see if that’s really the case. I do see the film making more than Man of Steel ($291 million) and maybe matching Suicide Squad ($325 million) but time will tell. It’s really nice to see WB/DC finally get a movie right after failing critically with the previous three.
Over the weekend I actually watched the original 1932 The Mummy film because I had never seen it and was curious to see what all the hoop-la was over the film. I thoroughly enjoyed it as it had the feeling of a stage play which makes sense because they had to rely on more story telling than special effects and Boris Karloff was- oh wait. That’s not The Mummy that was released this weekend, my apologies. The Mummy (2017) was supposed to be the start to Universal’s Dark Universe which harkens back to their original monster franchises which started in the 1930s and ended somewhere in the 1950s, although I’m sure some would argue that they ended earlier or later. I think we can officially put that universe on notice as The Mummy (2017) stumbled out of the gate with $31.6 million domestically. It picked up some decent change in the foreign market ($141 million) and combined with the domestic total it is actually the biggest opening weekend worldwide for a Tom Cruise starring film. But that’s about where all of the praise ends. CinemaScore gave the film a B- which doesn’t bode well for the movie moving forward. If a film doesn’t get a B+ or better then it usually means it’s pretty bad and won’t have good legs the following weekends. I don’t see the film doing well at all and I can’t think of a scenario where it somehow pulls a $100 million domestic total, which is what it would need to really make a profit thanks to a $125 million budget, out of the sand. Even the Brendan Fraser The Mummy films had bigger opening weekends! The Mummy (1999) opened with $43 million, The Mummy Returns had $68 million, and the abysmal The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor had $40 million. The Scorpion King, which should have been direct-to-video, opened with $36 million and the money had more value back then! The next film for the Dark Universe, which is still in pre-production, is Bride of Frankenstein, scheduled to be released in 2019, so Universal still has some time to think about how they want to proceed after this flop. But with the way things are looking it may be time to close the book on the Dark Universe. See here studio executives, this is how to not start up a connected universe of movies.
A26 is an indie movie studio that makes super low budget horror films and tries to spin them back around to make a much bigger profit. It’s a similar tactic to how the Paranormal Activity films are made which isn’t a bad business model. I think this is especially good for newer and less experienced directors to try and make something that is interesting, this can be a stepping stone to bigger projects. Keeping the budget low also helps A26, and other studios who do the same, since if the movie bombs they aren’t bankrupting the company. So while It Comes At Night is honestly bombing in the traditional sense, the film didn’t make a lot of money, it really doesn’t matter since the budget was only $5 million. I don’t think this film will make much of a profit and it won’t have a good run since CinemaScore rated the film with a D. This is the lowest I’ve seen for a film since The Circle which opened with a D+. I’ve heard that the trailers are a good bit misleading and does not show what the film is.
Guardians of the Galaxy 2 passed Deadpool for ninth on the list of highest domestic grossing comic book adaptations. Next on the list is Spider-Man 2 ($373 million) and while I think it has an outside shot at reaching that amount, the film has been having a quiet run remaining in the weekend top five for a while now, I think it ultimately settles right below it. Wonder Woman has finally entered the top ten! The film actually kicked Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales out of the top ten this week as the film currently sits in 11th (it won’t take long before it joins the top ten again as there is less than a $3 million difference between it and 10th place film Split). Wonder Woman will be in third place by the end of next weekend.
The LEGO Batman Movie: $175 million, $310.8 worldwide vs $80 million budget (This wasn’t the hit that WB was hoping for after what The LEGO Movie did but the film was still a financial success thanks to its lower than most animated films budget and the fact the film should sell extremely well in the home video market. While I don’t think this film will get a sequel on its own, WB will be keeping a close eye on its Ninjago film coming out later this year. If that film bombs then we can almost write off The LEGO Movie as a one hit wonder.)
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales continues to do well in foreign markets but I think the writing is on the wall for the series. I’ll be surprised if we get another Pirates movie after how this one has played. Wonder Woman is climbing up the charts as well. I anticipate a $750 million worldwide final total for the film. Anything more than that and I’ll be happy. Logan actually reached a milestone this past week as it opened in its final overseas market and crossed over $612 million worldwide passing The Passion of the Christ. This makes Logan the third highest grossing rated R film of all time behind The Matrix Reloaded ($742 million) and Deadpool ($783 million). Two of the highest grossing films rated R films in the world of all time are comic book films and were created by Fox. That’s a bit weird for me.
So next week we rev our engines as we take a look and see how Cars 3 performs. This will be the second 3rd film in a Pixar franchise and I see it doing a bit worse than Toy Story 3 (opened with $110 million). I fully anticipate Wonder Woman to easily take the number 2 spot next week so it could be boring or hopefully we have a surprise or two! Who knows! So thanks for reading and I hope you all join me week for The Box Office Report!