August 2017 Box Office Recap
By Steven Slater
September 7, 2017
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. Actually, no, winter has definitely arrived, and the White Walkers just killed Jon Snow and Daenerys. Abandon all hope ye who enter here. August of this year has been the bad end to a dismal summer. There were the usual highs and lows, but a sinking tide lowers all boats. However, if studios can make it appear that any film does not earn a profit, let us mix things up with our own underhanded math to show a brighter side to this month’s box office. Entertainment has never been bigger, never been seen by more people in the world, and the future is very bright. What place did movies hold for August of this year?
1*) Wolf Warrior 2
Opening Weekend: $141.8 million
Monthly Total: $800 million (approx.)
Many of you may be making the sound Tim Allen is famous for right now. Typically, this column only looks at domestic box office for rankings, but for this month I decided to make an exception to highlight the changing times. This is the number one “domestic” movie in China. How many of you had even heard of this film? Wolf Warrior is a Chinese film that opened in 2015 and earned about $90 million, almost all of it in China. Wolf Warrior 2 is similarly going to earn almost all of its money in China, but the growth is staggering. Imagine if The Emoji Movie had a sequel that earned as much as The Force Awakens. Simply put, Wolf Warrior 2 may beat records that things like Star Wars and James Cameron used to own. It will probably become the film with the highest box office from a single country (beating The Force Awakens’ $936 million), and it could even become the first film to earn over $1 billion in a single country. In stark contrast to the situation here in the states, Wolf Warrior 2 alone earned more than all the combined movie theaters across North America in August. Maybe MoviePass IS the answer.
1) Annabelle: Creation
Opening Weekend: $35 million
Monthly Total: $81.7 million
Back here across the pond, we all flocked to see the latest horror film in the Conjuring anthology, a series of modern horror films that appear to be better than they have any right to be. Credit James Wan for much of the success here, as he has steered this series well, although he only produced this film. The Conjuring films have all been produced for relatively small budgets and each earn close to $100 million, collecting a tidy profit. Annabelle: Creation will probably wind up close to that figure by the time it exits theaters.
Should Annabelle: Creation not reach the century mark, it would confirm just how weak August was. It is exceedingly rare to have an August without a $100 million dollar earner. Usually studios put out edgier fare or a blockbuster gamble, and something sticks. The past few years had big hits with Suicide Squad, Straight Outta Compton, and Guardians of the Galaxy. The last August with a film that didn’t earn $100 million ultimately was way back in 2000, with Space Cowboys only earning $90.5 million. And don’t you dare ask me about adjusting for inflation. That movie had too many old people jokes to begin with.