Weekend Wrap-Up

Disney and Marvel Score Again With Captain America: Civil War

By John Hamann

May 8, 2016


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Captain America: Civil War followed that $75.3 million Friday with a Saturday that was bound to be down from Friday. The Saturday came in a $61.1 million, off a respectable 19% from Friday – guaranteeing placement as one of the top ten opening films ever. As a comparison, Batman v Superman was off 38% when comparing Saturday to Friday, as Dawn of Justice earned $81.55 million on opening day and followed that number with $50.65 million on Saturday. Iron Man 3 earned less on Friday than Civil War ($68.9 million) and then slightly more on Saturday ($62.3 million). On Mother’s Day Sunday, Captain America: Civil War earned $45.4 million, turning in a very good weekend.

For the three day weekend, including Thursday previews, Captain America: Civil War earned a very powerful $181.8 million, finishing as the fifth biggest opener of all time. Considering the first Captain America is (now) 112th on the all-time openers list at $65.1 million, and the second is 42nd with a $95 million debut, Captain America’s move into the top films of all-time is significant. Of course, that’s because this one plays more like an Avengers film, even if it’s missing The Hulk and Thor. Still, the real Avengers films will come soon enough, as Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 is scheduled for May, 2018, with Part 2 scheduled for May 2019. At $250 million per film (at least), it is no wonder why Disney wants to package these things together and potentially save a few million.


Unlike Batman v Superman, there is no fallout for Civil War stemming from being a bad movie. With its 91% fresh rating, Civil War isn’t carrying the baggage that the 27% Zach Snyder film is (or was). The Cinemascore was brilliant, coming in at an A, and Deadline reports that it missed the A+ score by inches. That’s step one in making a blockbuster. The second is a strong release date (which this one definitely has), followed by an impressive marketing campaign. Civil War’s campaign – going back to the Super Bowl - invited audiences to choose a side, creating the buy-in that studios love. Captain America 3 cost $250 million to bring to the screen, and according to some, close to another $200 million to market globally. I will be looking for it to earn $750 million prior to profit, but this one is going to have it in the bag, as it also earned $220 million overseas this weekend (including $96 million from China), meaning the global gross for Civil War has already a staggering worldwide total of $678.4 million (it actually opened in some markets last weekend).

That puts fellow Disney release The Jungle Book down into second for the first time in four weekends. Disney expected The Jungle Book to be earning closer to $10 million in its fourth weekend, as they expected it to open at $70 million instead of $103.3 million and then hold at average weekend declines of 35%. So, it’s almost a bonus for Disney that Civil War is cannibalizing The Jungle Book – both going after that younger male demographic. The Jungle Book felt it this weekend, but maybe not to degree you might think.

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