|Film||Weekend||Per Tht||Cum. Total|
|1||X-Men: First Class||$56,000,000||$15,380||$56,000,000|
|2||The Hangover 2||$32,445,000 (-62%)||$8,970||$186,871,960|
|3||Kung Fu Panda 2||$24,300,000 (-49%)||$6,149||$100,440,458|
|4||Pirates 4||$18,010,000 (-55%)||$4,541||$190,256,277|
|7||Fast Five||$3,244,000 (-49%)||$1,450||$202,058,310|
|8||Midnight In Paris||$2,916,224 (-51%)||$19,838||$6.942,963|
|9||Jumping The Broom
|10||Something Borrowed||$835,000 (-55%)||$1,215||$36,660,317|
Well… that’s not what anybody really wanted to happen. But with no stars, no particularly marketable plot hooks, and the baggage of two garbage predecessors, there couldn’t have been anyone expecting a whole lot more for X-Men: First Class. The film also opened in the post memorial day frame in which the box office is still sweaty, naked, and breathing hard while casting quick glances to its left to make sure she doesn’t look too disappointed.
One wonders if the lack of Wolverine in this film, or the overexposure of shitty Wolverine in the previous film did more to hinder this film. If the answer is “both,” that’s kind of an odd paradox.
The thing is, $56m isn’t terrible. Attendance is actually very close to Thor, but without a 3D ticket price bump, and it would seem that word-of-mouth is going to be very strong. Even an X-Men film as good as X-Men United only did $215 off of an $85m opening and great critical response though, so there’d have to be some pretty stellar legs under this thing to take it anywhere past “break even.” The international numbers are decent enough that no one will go home broke.
This leaves the franchise in an awkward position though. What if the juice just isn’t there to do a sequel to First Class? The future of X-Men will then likely lie with The Wolverine, which is still looking for a new director. Fox may try and push that film hard as a return to form (they will absolutely throw Hood’s first Origins film under the bus to do so) and then… who knows? Say “fuck it” and do a hard reboot of everything? Push the standalone(ish) Wolverine franchise farther? Pick up the pieces of The Last Stand and move forward with that timeline? McKellen and Stewart are both kickin’ dudes in their early 70s, but McKellen especially seems not long for the action-blockbuster game.
The Hangover 2 being a sepia-stained Hangover 1 finally caught up with it, and the second weekend drop was not kind. It seems appropriate that this one would blow its load early, but such a mighty initial load means the fast-tracked third film is no danger. Bridesmaids however, continues to hold strongly, and flew past $100m this weekend. As I figured from the start, it looks like it will land squarely between 40-Year-Old-Virgin‘s $109m and Knocked Up‘s $150m, probably a notch above Superbad ($121m).
On the family end of things, Kung Fu Panda 2 didn’t make any particularly strong rebound from its soft domestic opening last week. It’s past $100m on its second weekend and doing well overseas so it’s no failure, but clearly this is a franchise that peaked immediately and now gets pumped and wrung out, rather than grown and cultivated. It will make some more dough next week, bleed just a bit to Popper’s Penguins following that, and then get absolutely decimated by Cars 2.
Pirates 4 also failed to drop any less steeply this weekend, but it’s also now just shy of $800m grossed worldwide in only a few weeks. In terms of the long-game and big picture, the franchise is still healthy.
We’re digging our heels into the summer a bit, and now Super 8 rocks and rolls next week. How far does Spielberg’s umbrella Abram’s name, mixed reviews, and trailers full of kids and explosions and …. take the film? There’s rumors of some big events for it this coming week- will the last minute exposure help it break out, or will it be a blip that’s then railroaded by Green Lantern and everything else? And that film- too cosmic? Or did Thor prime America for some spacey action?
Keep that browser dialed to the sewer…