Thu. Oct 6th, 2022

As expected, Thor: Love and Thunder ruled the box office this weekend and while it did score some personal best numbers for a couple of people involved, some are looking at the opening and wondering if it’s a bit of a disappointment.

Thor: Love and Thunder opened to $143 million this weekend which allows the Marvel release to be another shining example of films opening over $100 million after movies like The Batman, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Jurassic World: Dominion, and Minions: The Rise of Gru. As the summer box office is looking to recover after being ravaged by the pandemic in 2020 and parts of 2021, openings like this are huge for exhibitors who continue to exclaim that theatrical moviegoing is back and better than ever.

The opening is easily the best opening for a Taika Waititi project and it topped Thor: Ragnarok’s opening of $122.7 million. This is also the biggest opening of Natalie Portman’s career, topping all three openings for the Star Wars prequels that she appeared in. Her previous high was for Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith which opened at $108 million. Also impressive, this is the third-best opening of 2022 behind Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness ($187.4) and Jurassic World: Dominion ($145 million). With all of this good news, why are some looking at the opening with a bit of a troubling side-eye?

The film opened lower than my $160 million predictions and it even came in lower than most box office tracking. The film also earned a “B+” CinemaScore from opening day moviegoers. Marvel films usually notch higher grades and you can tell that the fan reaction to Thor: Love and Thunder is a bit polarizing. Some feel it went too far in on the jokes and almost became a parody of itself while others think it’s the best Thor movie yet. Reactions are clearly mixed and it’s a trend that Marvel is starting to see more of lately. Last year, Eternals earned a “B” CinemaScore after receiving the worst critical notices of the MCU. Back in May, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness also earned a “B+” CinemaScore but, to its credit, the box office was still stellar as its current running domestic total stands at $411 million. The real test will be how it performs next weekend and it luckily has the benefit of being the last true tentpole release of the summer which could help its legs in the end. Globally, the film’s opening exceeded initial expectations with a $302 million worldwide debut after grossing $143 million from overseas markets.

Dropping to second is Minions: The Rise of Gru which grossed $45.5 million. That’s a decline of 57% which was to be expected coming off its inflated Fourth of July holiday weekend. Universal/Illumination is not complaining about the results here so far. The film continues the massive success of the franchise which was said to have topped $4 billion worldwide heading into the weekend across all of the films. We will definitely be seeing more of these little guys in the future. To date, Minions: The Rise of Gru has grossed $210 million domestically and $399.8 million worldwide.

Top Gun: Maverick continues to soar in third place with a gross of $15.5 million. That’s a decline of 40% as the film continues to be a solid player thanks to frequent repeat viewings from fans. Everything about its box office performance has been spectacular and there are really no more words left to say about how it has truly redefined the summer blockbuster since opening back over Memorial Day weekend. Top Gun: Maverick has now grossed $597.4 million domestically and a staggering $1.03 billion globally.

Elvis continues to thrive with the older demographic in fourth place with a gross of $11 million. Also down a relatively slim 40% from last weekend, Elvis is the best example yet that older moviegoers are heading back to the movies in the wake of the pandemic. All exit polling shows that the primary audience for Elvis has skewed older and that’s really good news for the box office as a whole. The $85 million production has now grossed $91.1 million at the domestic box office and the $100 million milestone will soon be in its sights.

Rounding out the top five is Jurassic World: Dominion which grossed $8.4 million. That’s a decline of 49% as its recent performance has made it slip a bit below what Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom was doing in the same timeframe. That’s not to say that the film’s box office journey has been a disappointment. Despite poor reviews, Jurassic World: Dominion has grossed $350.3 million domestically and $876.4 million worldwide. It’s a hit and that’s regardless of what the critics had to say about it.

What are YOUR thoughts on this weekend’s box office results?

By admin