Friday Box Office Analysis
By Tim Briody
May 28, 2016
The sixth X-Men movie (and third in the First Class reboot) starts Memorial Day weekend with $26.4 million on Friday, with $8.2 million of that coming on Thursday. The last entry the franchise, Days of Future Past was also a Memorial Day weekend release and turned a $35.5 million Friday (with a strikingly similar $8.1 million on Thursday) into a $90.8 million weekend. The drop in box office from Days of Future Past to Apocalypse is worrisome for the franchise and also continues the narrative that it’s not a good year to be a sequel (more on that in a moment). This opening is also a pretty firm sign that we have finally, after all these years, hit peak superhero. The fatigue is real. Should Apocalypse follow the same box office pattern over the holiday weekend as Days of Future Past, we’re looking at $67.5 million on the weekend and $82.2 million in four days. That actually feels a little bit high, so I think you’ll see some estimates of $65 million over three days and just about $80 million in four days.
Alice Through the Looking Glass
In 2010, Alice in Wonderland basically came out of nowhere to open to $116.1 million and finished with $334.1 million domestically and earned over a billion worldwide. Six years later, the sequel…will not do that. In a stunning reversal of fortune, Alice Through the Looking Glass earned $9.7 million on Friday, a far cry from the $40.8 million earned by the original. Whether you blame it on 1) less familiarity with the novel that comes after Alice in Wonderland, 2) way too much time passing between films, 3) Unnecessary Sequel Syndrome or 4) how difficult it seems to find anybody who liked the last movie, the drop-off from original to sequel is one of the biggest free falls ever. Granted, it will do very well overseas (as will X-Men, making this weekend definitive proof that North America is not the most important audience anymore), but we’re going from a $100 million opening weekend to not earning $100 million domestically. Even buoyed by family audiences, the best that Alice Through the Looking Glass can hope for on the weekend is a total of about $33 million in three days and about $40 million over four.
The Angry Birds Movie
The Angry Birds Movie takes a 50% hit on Friday to $5 million, but that’s actually all right as the bigger money will come on the long weekend, which is friendly to family films. Last weekend saw a Friday-to-Sunday multiplier of 3.52, and Memorial Day will improve on that, to where it’s looking at a second weekend of $18.8 million in three days and about $23 million in four.