By Matthew Moorcroft
On Father’s Day weekend, it seems like families decided to stay away from Lightyear in favour of older releases, and leaving it in the dust. What happened here? Let’s break it down.
1 – Jurassic World Dominion ($58.7 million)
It seems negative reviews do nothing to stop the march of the dinosaurs. Dropping 60% in it’s second weekend of release, Dominion ended up scoring another $58.7 million to hold onto the #1 spot for the second week in a row. At $249.8 million so far, the film is performing well within expectations – something Universal is likely very happy to hear, especially as the negative critical reception was something to be afraid of.
But it seems like there was nothing to be afraid of. We are likely witnessing the birth of a critic-proof franchise, as it’s second weekend drop was nearly identical to Fallen Kingdom‘s (that film fell 59% in it’s second weekend) and worldwide the film has hit $622.2 million, meaning a billion is likely in reach for the dinosaur epic.
Can it hold another two weeks before Thor: Love and Thunder opens? My guess is yes, though it will likely struggle on the 4th of July weekend as Maverick will dominate then. But still, international numbers have always been strong for Jurassic World and this is no exception.
2 – Lightyear ($51 million)
In the biggest news of the weekend, Lightyear ended up as Pixar’s biggest disappointment in a very long time. While it was projected to make anywhere from $70-90 million in it’s opening weekend, Lightyear barely cross $50 million to make just $51 million, a far cry from initial predictions and their 5th lowest opening ever, beating out only Toy Story, A Bug’s Life, Onward, and Ratatouille. Worldwide, the film opened with $85.6 million, which still isn’t great but at least in key markets the film is at least pulling it’s weight.
So what happened here? Lightyear on paper seems like a sure bet – a science fiction adventure film based on the most popular character from Pixar’s most popular franchise, as well the first Pixar film on the big screen since Onward in 2020. But when you look at the details, things start to add up. Lightyear’s lack of interest among casual audience members was clear, and while an A- Cinemascore is pretty good it’s low for Pixar, with only Onward and Cars 2 receiving them. And while critical reviews leaned positive, they were definitely on the lower side for the company. It also doesn’t help that Pixar’s last three films, outside of being critically praised across the board, were released straight to Disney+ which could have affected how audiences perceived this. “I’ll just wait for it on streaming” is a common phrase and I wouldn’t be shocked if Lightyear‘s theatrical only release was ignored.
It’s gonna be interesting how it fares in the coming weeks. Even Pixar’s worst films tend to hold decently well with the exception of Onward which got hit with the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic, so it’s very likely this could do well in the long game. Alas, it’s a disappointing number for the film and might make Pixar reconsider doing spin-offs like this in the future.
3 – Top Gun: Maverick ($44 million)
Father’s Day was always going to be big for this film and unsurprisingly Top Gun ended up holding exceptionally well once again. The massive blockbuster made yet another $44 million to raise up it’s domestic total to a whopping $466.2 million, making it the highest grossing movie of the year domestically so far. It’s drop of only 15% was the best in the Top 5 as well, making it one of it’s best week to week holds to date.
Worldwide, the film has hit $885.2 million, meaning a billion is a go and will likely reaching that within the week if it keeps this rate up. Next week sees the release of Elvis and The Black Phone, neither of which is likely to give it too much trouble, so it should likely surpass that number then. After that, it’s unknown how far it will actually go, but that’s neither here nor there.
Maverick is an example of what happens when a film gets both incredible word of mouth from audiences and is also a technical achievement. Between this and No Way Home, the box office has been shown that it absolutely can survive through a pandemic and bolster every film around it as well. Let’s see how it fares in the coming weeks – how much will it destroy in it’s wake?
4 – Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness ($4.2 million)
Hanging on by a thread, Doctor Strange ended up having a pretty decent drop in it’s 7th week of release, dropping 20% to gross another $4.2 million for a domestic total of $405.1 million. Having cross that threshold, Doctor Strange, while it’s definitely had something of a quick and fast burn out, at least managed to break the barrier and become a massive hit in the long run.
Worldwide the film is at $942.5 million and has begun to fully slow down. Likely ending it’s run around $950-955 million seems likely, which would be a solid number to go down on and give Marvel a good reason greenlight a third Doctor Strange movie as quickly as they can. And while they have been pretty tight lipped about sequels, D23 is on it’s way in September, and if any news is coming it will likely be there.
With the film coming to Disney+ on the 22nd, this is likely the end of it’s run here domestically though, so it’s time to say adios to Doctor Strange. It’s been fun looking at it’s run, and it certainly had a bizarre turn as the weeks went by and it became less likely to make a billion. Still, streaming will do wonders for it.
5 – The Bob’s Burgers Movie ($1.1 million)
Just hanging on barely by a thread as well was Bob’s Burgers, which made $1.1 million after a another steep drop of 55% to add onto it’s $29.8 million domestic total. It got a bit of a boost from Father’s Day showings, but it’s early days seemed to indicate indie darling Everything Everywhere All At Once and the animated slow burn hit The Bad Guys were outpacing it.
And thank god for Father’s Day cause this film is not doing well in the slightest. While ending above $30 million isn’t completely terrible considering it’s budget (and the fact that this film is gonna be a streamer hit), it still shows the lack of interest in 2D animation at the box office right now as well as animation in general. This lack of interest could have also contributed to Lightyear‘s disappointing opening, which gives reason to think Minions could also underperform this year.
Still though, this will likely be the last week for the film in the top 5. It lost a majority of it’s theaters this week as well, and with two new releases opening up it will likely be only a matter of time before the rest of it’s theaters get swallowed up. Hopefully it teaches Disney/Fox a lesson as well about proper marketing instead of simply dumping your movies into theaters without much support.