June 2017 Box Office Recap
By Steven Slater
July 6, 2017
3) Transformers: The Last Knight
Opening Weekend: $44.7 million
Monthly Total: $90 million
This amazing biopic, the second about King Arthur this summer, is surely vying for Anthony Hopkins next Oscar, and Mark Wahlberg could upset the race for best actor. Unless Bumblebee wins. It’s really anyone’s guess. Anyway, the fifth film in this franchise appears to finally have audiences catching on to the bad reviews and simplistic nature of these movies. Bayhem can satisfy a craving, but serving the same meal five times in a row is a little much. This type of box office trajectory spells potential doom for this hugely expensive franchise unless a reboot a la Fast and Furious or Spiderman is in order. Transformers is still a huge name, but nothing is eternal or invincible. Just ask the Terminator.
4) Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
Monthly Total: $74.2 million
The first holdover, and another sequel with falling numbers, is our third place finisher in June. The fifth Pirates film, and yet probably not the last, is throwing well below any of the previous films, earning $74.2 million in June for a domestic total of $163.8 million so far. This and Transformers are the fifth entries in their respective franchises, and that seems to be where they wear out their welcome. With international numbers also below previous entries, this could similarly signal that Disney and Jerry Bruckheimer try a new angle, perhaps without Johnny Depp. But since I hear a fifth Indiana Jones movie is being made with Harrison Ford, I bet within four years we’ll see grandpa Depp (still looking eerily like young Depp), swaggering his way through green screen carnage.
5) The Mummy
Opening Weekend: $31.7 million
Monthly Total: $72.6 million
If this was 1999, then this movie would be doing great! Brendan Fraser has a nice long career ahead of him as a leading man. I hear Dudley Do-Right is next up for this rising star. But, alas, it is nearly 20 years later, and this modern opening weekend is only about three quarters of what that 20th Century film managed almost 20 years ago! Tom Cruise is actually within his ballpark with this opening, as The Mummy has the third highest opening of his last ten films. Universal had to have been hoping the name recognition of the film would bump it towards Mission: Impossible territory, and don’t expect this Mummy to have any legs as reviews have been pretty abysmal. Universal’s hopes of a Dark Universe may not be totally dashed, as they have had failures before, but the obvious plant of Russell Crowe as Dr. Jekyll for future monster films may not play out as intended.
6) Captain Underpants
Opening Weekend: $23.9 million
Monthly Total: $68.5 million
DreamWorks’ final film being distributed by Fox is actually a resounding success, mostly because the budget was uncharacteristically low for a Dreamwork’s Animation film. The decent reviews don’t hurt either, since DreamWorks has seemingly been in a bit of a lull for years, unable to recapture the magic of How to Train Your Dragon or Shrek. Their sale to Universal probably will not impact this, but perhaps the continuation of their better franchises can lift their fortunes. Kung Fu Panda and the aforementioned properties could still have great films to come. As for Underpants, it probably arrived a bit after the peak of the books’ popularity, not to mention the fact that most of the book’s readers have aged outside its demographic, so this has to be seen as about the best result possible.