Monday, May 25, 2015

'Tomorrowland' leads disappointing Memorial Day Weekend with $40.7 million

For the last two years, Memorial Day Weekend has seen the debut of some of the year's biggest box office heavyweights. In 2013, we had the three-way battle between Fast and Furious 6, The Hangover Part III and Epic, and last year, X-Men: Days of Future Past made a pretty tidy profit. The same can't be said for this year. With only two middling releases that didn't gain much traction, this was a pretty lackluster Memorial Day frame. Disney's Tomorrowland, budgeted at $190 million, opened in first place with $40.7 million over the long weekend. That was well below industry projections of $50 million+ and another major hit for Disney. Buzz on Tomorrowland was strong for a while, but negative reviews and a very vague marketing campaign led the film to be another disappointment for the studio. Word of mouth was poor as well- the film received a "B" Cinemascore from audiences, which is very unenthusiastic. Disney will survive this blow, but after John Carter, Prince of Persia and even The Sorcerer's Apprentice, it might be time to stop these big-budget live-action films.


Pitch Perfect 2 held very well and stayed in second place, with $37.9 million over the holiday. The A Cappella comedy has now grossed $125.4 million and could skyrocket as high as $200 million. This has been a banner year for Universal so far, and with the continued success of Pitch Perfect 2 and the strong tracking for Jurassic World, I can see Universal taking the overall box office crown for this year. Right behind Pitch Perfect 2 in third place was Mad Max: Fury Road, which grossed $30 million this weekend, enough to raise its total to $93.4 million. Word of mouth has been carrying this one and I can see Fury Road staying long enough to hit $150 million. It's an absolutely brilliant film and I'm so glad that it's doing well at the box office.

The other new release of the weekend was Fox's Poltergeist. The $35 million horror picture took in $27.7 million, which is a decent debut. I'm honestly not sure if it was a good idea to open so close to Insidious- Chapter 3, but Poltergeist is also not a very good movie, so that certainly didn't help things. Critics weren't enthusiastic and neither were audiences- the film was awarded a terrible "C+" Cinemascore. With a plethora of other films in the marketplace, I doubt that we'll hear much about Poltergeist again.

Avengers: Age of Ultron rounded out the top five with a very solid $26.7 million. The box office phenomenon crossed the $400 million mark this weekend, and it's total now stands at $409.9 million. It pales in comparison to the original film, but Age of Ultron is doing just fine on its own. The film should close with around $475 million in the US.

Next weekend, we'll see the debut of two new films- Dwayne Johnson's disaster blockbuster San Andreas and Cameron Crowe's Aloha. Here are my predictions:

1. San Andreas- $37 million
2. Pitch Perfect 2- $19.5 million
3. Mad Max; Fury Road- $17 million
4. Aloha- $14.8 million
5. Avengers: Age of Ultron- $14.6 million
6. Poltergeist- $12 million
7. Hot Pursuit- $2 million
8. Far From the Madding Crowd- $1.9 million
9. Furious 7- $1.4 million
10. Home- $900K


Image Credits: YouTube, Pelis Pelis Pelis

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