Thor: The Dark World Dominates
By John Hamann
November 10, 2013
All in, Thor: The Dark World had an opening frame of $86.1 million, a fantastic opening that can be at least partially credited to the Avengers effect. Additionally, the Marvel sequel will very likely add another $10 million plus on the holiday Monday. It's just barely behind Skyfall ($88 million Friday-to-Sunday, $90.6 million including Thursday previews), and blows away the trend line from the debut of Thor, which found $65.7 million in 2011. Thor is a solid second in terms of non-Twilight, non-Potter November openings, as it falls smack between The Incredibles ($70.5 million) and Skyfall in terms of opening weekend results.
Some will try and tell you that the Thor sequel is a letdown because Thor was in The Avengers, and that one opened to $207 million. This is the first Marvel or DC property to open outside of the summer months, and the studio should be given props for having the cojones to launch this one in the winter. The original was the 15th biggest comic book opener (now 16th), leaving the sequel as the 12th biggest comic book opener ever. The name of the game in the movie business, and especially in the high stakes comic book world we all live in, is to keep the trend line going up. Thor does that, and that line is spiking overseas.
Thor: The Dark World cost Disney and Marvel $170 million to make, $20 million more than the original, $50 million less than The Avengers, and $30 million less than Iron Man 3. Profit was never really in question for Thor: The Dark World. The question was how much. The Hollywood Reporter said that Thor had earned over $150 million overseas prior to Thursday, and after two weekends in play overseas, it is already approaching $250 million. The original Thor took in $268 million overseas from its entire run. Despite the big numbers, The Dark Word earned more in days than the original did in months. I think we can expect $500 million overseas from this release and another $200 million plus stateside, for a 25% uptick over the original globally.
For Disney, its slice of the box office pie only widens with The Dark World, as for the first time, Paramount is on the sidelines for a Marvel property. Lastly, Thor 2 has no competition next weekend, save for The Best Man Holiday, where the original Thor faced Bridesmaids and Priest in its second weekend. Those two films combined for $40 million, and Fast Five still pulled in $20 million. Thor’s hammer has swung strongly at the box office, and it’s going to have another full crack at it before Catching Fire appears.
As expected, films that are not in 3D fight for second place this weekend, as Thor reigns over the 3D market. That means Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa is second, which gives it a third consecutive weekend in that spot despite some sizable hitters. Bad Grandpa earned another $11.3 million, which means it fell 44% from its $20 million second weekend. That’s going to give Bad Grandpa a decent shot at $100 million, as it has Veteran’s Day tomorrow and Thanksgiving on the horizon. Bad Grandpa is playing a lot like the first Jackass movie, but with bigger numbers. The original Jackass didn’t drop more than 50% until weekend five, and pulled in $7.1 million in weekend three. Bad Grandpa already has $78.7 million in the can, as it has already become the second biggest Jackass release behind only Jackass 3D, which finished with $117.2 million.