An ocean theme washed into theaters this week just in time for the sunny season to commence. Memorial Day has traditionally been the kick off of Summer, however Hollywood has been starting the season as early as April, in recent years. This front-loading of the blockbuster session has meant the 4-day holiday weekend has weakened, so to say. This year the overall total came in 15% lower, and marks the third straight year no film has a $100 million opening.
With event pictures released early on, and without a “must-see” component, many audience members engage themselves differently on the holiday. Dare I say, many actually interact with their families and friends?! As such even with the softening of expectations many titles failed to reach projected numbers for the holiday frame. Let’s dig in and see if people were drawn to beach-centric titles, or if they actually went to the beach. (Split numbers are estimates of the 3-day/4-day totals)
- PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES — 3-Day $62.1million/4-Day $77 million
Disney goes to the Johnny Depp well yet again, despite less-than a pirate’s booty here in North America. The previous entry in the franchise, “On Stranger Tides”, didn’t make back its bloated $250 million budget. However globally it managed to gross over $1 billion, so the motivation for more swashbuckling is evident. Overseas this title has already cleared $200 million, and is expected to earn at least four times that by the end.
2. GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2 — $20m / $25.1m
About the only title to meet projections this weekend, Marvel’s space epic continues to churn decent figures. Finishing ahead of openings and newer releases, Chris Pratt and Co. are making for one of the few sequels that has been an unqualified success. This second trip has already made more than the original.
3. BAYWATCH — $18.5m / $23m
It is proving to be a tough time for comedies. Falling well short of expectations this reimagining of the famed show failed to draw people to the sand. Following the formula of recent TV adaptations converting the premise to more comedic content this is coming in more along the lines of “CHiPS” from earlier this year, and not the success like “21 Jump Street”. One saving grace is those that did see the film graded it with an A- CinemaScore, so there may be some long term recovery. Paramount must be hoping the international markets will be the saving grace, considering the popularity the TV show overseas. Few studios want to rely upon “The Hasselhoff Effect”!
4. ALIEN: COVENANT — $10.5m / $13.1m
In its second week the poorly received sequel plunged a stark 71%, a sign of actual abandonment by ticket buyers. That was AFTER adding a dozen more screens. Look for it to shed many more theaters than that next week.
5. EVERYTHING, EVERYTHING — $6.2m / $7.3m
Teen angst and love managed to hold decently with a less than 50% drop in its second week. This meager $10 million budgeted release is already making money for Warner Brothers.
6. DIARY OF A WIMPY KID: THE LONG HAUL — $4.4m / $5.7m
With little in the way of options for the younger demographic this sequel held respectfully in week 2 – dropping only -38% from its open, albeit a soft opening. However next week it faces “Captain Underpants”, another book-based preteen title. This may have a long trip to turning a profit.
7. SNATCHED — $3.89m / $4.87m
Amy Schumer’s non-comedy will only continue to fade from memory as it was dropped from 850 theaters. This one is going over about as poorly as her Bud Light commercials.
8. KING ARTHUR: LEGEND OF THE SWORD — $3.26m / $4.14m
The frontrunner for “Disaster of the Summer”, theaters gave up on this misfire as it dropped 1,200 screens in week #3. The international business, while better, is still not enough to float this bloated bomb. It sits at $120 million globally, and probably needs close $400 million to begin breaking even.
9. THE BOSS BABY — $1.7Mm/ $2.3m
Interesting how no entertainment writers drew a comparison to the cartoon infant type-A executive in the romp to Donald Trump.
10. BEAUTY AND THE BEAST — $1.52m / $1.93m
This monster hit (literally) just crossed the $500 million plateau. Additionally Disney has already earned over $1 Billion this year in domestic releases.
That’s the report from Hollywood, for May 29.
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