TUESDAY AM UPDATE, writethru with actuals: Disney/Fox’s Dark Phoenix came in below Sunday’s estimate with an international box office opening of $103.7M in 53 markets, per the actuals. Combined with a heavily singed domestic bow, the global debut was $136.5M, lower than pre-weekend projections from the industry. The Simon Kinberg-helmed pic through Sunday was behind both of the last installments overseas, X-Men: Apocalypse (-30%) and X-Men: Days Of Future Past (-23%). It was No. 1 worldwide, and No. 1 in 36 offshore markets, but audiences essentially gave it the bird amid lousy reviews and social media reaction. An ultimate offshore cume looks to be in the low $200Ms for a possible $300M global final.
Chinese Censors Crank Heat & Wreak Havoc On Local Summer Movies; Upside To Hollywood?
China led all play this session with $45.6M which in today’s rates is 28% bigger than Days Of Future Past, but 15% less than Apocalypse, each of which had three-day bows. Dark Phoenix opened in the Middle Kingdom on Thursday, looking to take advantage of the Dragon Boat Festival. It had a decent hike on Friday, the first full day of the holiday, but then saw a 30%+ drop on Saturday, and was down again Sunday, by about 39%, which resulted in a start below projections as we earlier wrote.
The bird’s Middle Kingdom trajectory was impacted by social scores with Maoyan at 7.7 and Douban at 6.1. During the course of the weekend, Maoyan lowered its final full-run China estimate for the Phoenix to a scorched $61M. China was the lead home for the last two X-Men, as well as Logan, but Dark Phoenix’s wings were certainly clipped there. On Monday, local youth romance My Best Summer, overtook it at No. 1 for the day.
Elsewhere, the numbers are low. Korea came in behind China, all the way down at $5.7M through Sunday (and against the continued success of Parasite and Aladdin there) with Mexico ($5M), the UK ($4.9M) and France ($3.8M) rounding out the Top 5. In IMAX, Dark Phoenix grossed $14.1M globally, including $9.1M from international where this is Fox’s 2nd best opening weekend in the format.
This is a competitive landscape, for sure, and in the summer a film needs to bring the goods in order to compete. But the expensive Dark Phoenix had been through reshoots and release date changes and ultimately resulted in a movie that drew the lowest RT score domestically for any X-Men title. Certainly, as Anthony has noted, franchise fatigue (like with Godzilla last weekend) is a factor when the films aren’t good or in high demand. After Apocalypse, which was not well-received, this can also be seen as a retaliatory reaction from moviegoers.
Cathleen Taff, who is Disney’s President of Theatrical Distribution, Franchise Management and Business & Audience Insights, says, “A great cast and filmmaking team tried to bring the franchise to an epic conclusion and it’s disappointing to see it’s not connecting… I think what’s going to matter is in terms of how these films will be remembered, hopefully it’s the combination and not the opening of the last one.”
It’s a bummer for a Fox title to go out like this (and much of the cast put in a lot of overseas promotional effort). But it wasn’t really clear who the movie was for as some believe the franchise has deteriorated over time, jumping around and causing confusion. Ultimately, it’s expected to generate a loss, but it also brings the X-Men under the Disney Marvel roof.
Elsewhere, Disney’s Aladdin has been a genie at holding ticket buyers’ attention. After crossing $500M globally last Thursday, it rode past $600M this weekend. The overseas drop was lower than anticipated for $70.7M, up from the Sunday estimate. Japan got off to a flying start, posting the highest western opening weekend of 2019 to date with an estimated $12.9M.
Warner Bros/Legendary’s Godzilla: King Of The Monsters came in third internationally with $47.9M in 78 markets, slightly better than the Sunday estimate, but still a 63% drop from the opening weekend. Overseas, the total is $216M through Sunday for $294.5M worldwide.
Though most openings have been lower than its predecessor, Illumination/Universal’s The Secret Life Of Pets 2 is in a long rollout and seeing decent holds with many majors ahead. The global cume is approaching $100M after adding another $16M in 30 offshore markets this session.
Paramount’s Elton John musical fantasy biopic Rocketman put another $13M in the songbook in 50 markets to crocodile rock the offshore cume to $51.3M.
And, in its 7th weekend, Avengers: Endgame is now at $2.731B; it is $57M below Avatar as of Sunday.
Breakdowns on the films above and more have been updated below. Actuals have been updated for Disney/Fox and Warner Bros.
The film was No. 1 in 36 of its 53 material markets and still has Japan and Indonesia to release, but an overseas final is expected to be in the low $200Ms.
Finance experts see it resulting in a $100M+ loss. The upside is that Disney brings the X-Men into its own Marvel stable.
China was a disappointment with a $45.6M start that’s below the $50M-$60M some saw pre-bow. DP could struggle to get to $70M there with all the competition that’s entering the market in the next few weeks.
Beyond that, there was heavy competition in Korea from Bong Joon-ho’s Parasite which has now grossed about $51M locally. Aladdin also continues to hold the No. 2 spot there with Dark Phoenix settling for 3rd at just $5.7M.
Mexico debuted to $5M in 1st place with the UK making just $4.9M, also in a competitive field that includes Aladdin, Rocketman and The Secret Life Of Pets 2. France’s No. 1 start of $3.8M landed amid great weather, the start of the women’s World Cup and the tennis finals at Roland Garros.
Russia ($3.4M), Brazil ($2.9M), Philippines ($2.4M), Taiwan ($2.3M) and India ($2.3M) round out the Top 10.
In IMAX, Dark Phoenix grossed $14.1M globally, including $9.1M from international where this is Fox’s 2nd best IMAX opening weekend.
Indonesia opens next weekend and Japan goes June 21.
Europe regionally dipped by just 35% with continued No. 1s in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Middle East, Netherlands, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK. The individual holds include +74% in Lebanon, -20% in the UK, -21% in the Netherlands, -25% in Spain and -39% in Germany.
Asia Pacific dropped by 20% with Aladdin still No. 1 in Australia. It also saw a 52% increase in Korea. Malaysia too saw a jump of 15% while Indonesia was down just 12%. Aladdin has already surpassed the lifetime cumes of Maleficent, Cinderella and Oz: The Great And Powerful in the region. It is the 2nd highest Disney Live Action title (excluding Marvel/Lucas) in Korea, Philippines and India.
Latin America saw a 35% slide with No. 1s again in Peru, Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Uruguay, Paraguay and Venezuela. Brazil dropped 35% and Mexico 40%. In both of those, Aladdin has already surpassed The Jungle Book.
The Top 5 markets are China ($48.1M), UK ($33M), Korea ($27.8M), Mexico ($25.7M) and Spain ($16.6M).
GODZILLA: KING OF THE MONSTERS
China grossed $111.7M through Sunday and had some nice bumps during the holiday weekend, but overall fell by 69% there. Japan had a No. 2 hold behind Aladdin to cume $16.1M so far.
Some of the other Asian markets held No. 2 including Taiwan, Indonesia and Thailand. The Top 5 markets behind China and Japan are rounded out by Mexico ($8M), UK ($7M) and Taiwan ($6.8M).
THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS 2
However, there is much road ahead for the Illumination/Universal title which rolls out over the next two months and has yet to hit such majors as Australia, Germany, Brazil, China, Japan, Korea, France, Spain and Mexico. Each of those markets is key for the film.
This session, the Pets grossed $16M for a $49M offshore total thus far in 30 markets. The Chris Renaud-helmed animation was No. 1 in nine of those this weekend. Globally, it is approaching $100M.
Netherlands led openers this frame with $1.74M at 139 locations for the top spot and ahead of Incredibles 2 and Ralph Breaks The Internet. Vietnam was also a No. 1 opening with $1.25M at 185, coming in just below Pets 1. Italy made $1.1M at No. 2; last time around, Secret Life Of Pets had a special screening at the Venice Film Festival just before it opened which helped it to nearly a $15M final.
Elsewhere, the UK had a strong hold in weekend three, down just 25% to cume $18.9M. Russia has made $16.9M to date. Australia takes these guys out for a walk next weekend.
Korea, which is typically keen on musicals, gave Rocketman a $517K debut at 505, good for No. 5 behind the holds of Parasite and Aladdin, and the debut of Dark Phoenix. Poland bowed at No. 3, grossing $124K from 194.
In holds, the UK was down just 12.5% to $2.8M on the 3rd weekend for a leading local cume of $20.5M. The next best markets are Australia ($7.3M cume to date), France ($3M), Germany ($2.8M)) and Brazil ($2.1M).
Japan is still to come on August 23.
JOHN WICK: CHAPTER 3 – PARABELLUM
Lionsgate’s third installment of the assassin franchise crossed $250M globally this weekend, while adding another $10.1M from the international box office. The overseas cume is now $113.6M after four frames. New this session was the Middle East at $3M to rep a 66% increase over the previous in the series. Korea is still to come on June 26.
The Top 5 markets so far are the UK ($11.6M), Australia ($8.8M), Germany ($8.1M), Russia ($7.3M) and Mexico ($6.8M).
POKEMON DETECTIVE PIKACHU
The little furry yellow guy picked up another $7.3M from 73 markets to total $273.7M offshore and $411.3M worldwide. China continues to lead all plays with $93.2M so far, and we hear has an extension in the market.
Behind China, Japan is next at $25.2M, followed by the UK ($16.9M), Mexico ($11.64M) and Germany ($11.62M)
Ma (UNI): $3M intl weekend (39 markets); $7.3M intl cume
The Hustle (UNI): $1M intl weekend (30 markets); $36.5M intl cume ($43.3M including non-Uni markets)
A Dog’s Journey (UNI): $500K intl weekend (16 markets); $7.9M intl cume ($38.9M including non-Uni markets)
NEW LOCAL LANGUAGE
In China, My Best Summer, a romantic youth drama adapted from the TV series With You, opened to $22.7M per comScore. It took advantage of the Dragon Boat Festival to land No. 2 for the weekend in the Middle Kingdom. Zhang Disa directs the coming of age story. Just below My Best Summer, Chasing The Dragon II: Wild Wild Bunch picked up $22.4M, also per comScore. The Hong Kong title stars Tony Leung Ka Fai and Louis Koo and is a crime actioner about a billionaire kidnapper whose Hong Kong gang is now targeting an affluent Macau regal. Jason Kwan and Jing Wong direct.
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