Familiarity with the brand is not all that matters to attract the public to the multiplex, and Hollywood learns this lesson the hard way this summer with a series of underperforming sequences and reboots. This so-called fatigue of the franchise has gained momentum this weekend with the releases of "Men in Black: International" and "Shaft".
The writing may have been lost after a movie by X-Men ("Dark Phoenix") or Godzilla ("Godzilla: The King of the Monsters") has sparked the film. enthusiasm of moviegoers. But this weekend, down more than 50% from last year, is the worst so far.
"It was a tough weekend," said Paul Dergarabedian, Comscore's media analyst. "We had some big franchises that do not resonate with the public or critics."
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And there is a common denominator between all the recent disappointments: bad reviews. All four have been certified "rotten" on rotten tomatoes.
"Men in Black: International" took first place in North America, but it's a dubious distinction for the restart led by Tessa Thompson and Chris Hemsworth, who is not exactly the franchise revitalizer that He hoped to be. Sony Pictures on Sunday estimates that the film directed by F. Gary Gray has only reported $ 28.5 million over the weekend, for a production budget of $ 110 million. The three previous films "Men in Black" have all opened at over 50 million dollars, regardless of inflation.
However, international audiences contribute to the film's profitability, generating $ 73.7 million in 36 markets, bringing the global total to $ 102.2 million.
Shaft, the other big novelty of the weekend, which introduces a new generation into the franchise, has not even managed to carve a place in the top five, which was rather populated mainly with hold-ups .
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"The Secret Life of Pets 2" earned second place in its second weekend with $ 23.8 million. Aladdin, of Disney, in the fourth weekend, took third place with $ 16.7 million. "Dark Phoenix" is ranked fourth with $ 9 million and "Rocketman" ranked fifth with $ 8.8 million.
"Shaft", a Warner Bros. publication, is ranked sixth in the charts, with a disappointing result of $ 8.3 million.
Directed by Tim Story, "Shaft" presents Samuel L. Jackson resuming his role almost 20 years ago and Jessie T. Usher as his son. That was done for about $ 30 million.
Although critics did not praise the film, spectators (54% female) were more enthusiastic, which earned them an A CinemaScore.
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Even some originals have had difficult times this weekend. Amazon Studios has expanded its comedy "Late Night" by Mindy Kaling and Emma Thompson, for which it acquired North American rights for a record $ 13 million at Sundance, to 2,220 movie theaters where it reported 5, $ 1 million.
"The real positives are the smaller independents," said Dergarabedian. "We think that summer is a season of success, but it is transformed into a season of independent films."
Jim Jarmusch's zombie comedy "The Dead Don & # 39; t Die" survived his mixed reviews and opened $ 2.35 million in 613 locations.
Documentaries such as "Echo in the Canyon" and "Pavarotti" made a modest, limited-edition mark, and the acclaimed drama "The Last Black Man in San Francisco" was expanded to 36 locations and grossed $ 361,120. It is expanding again next weekend.
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But the market suffers and it's not a problem with the weekend, which saw "Incredibles 2" open last year to more than $ 182 million, but with the big movies themselves .
The disappointments come mainly from "movies that simply do not give", according to Dergarabedian.
But it's too simplistic to criticize all the franchises and the next weekend, the market will sing a different tune when "Toy Story 4" opens.
"Toy Story 4 will erase the memory of this very difficult weekend," said Dergarabedian.
Estimated ticket sales from Friday to Sunday in US and Canadian theaters, according to Comscore. Where applicable, the latest international issues from Friday to Sunday are also included. The final national figures will be released Monday.
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1. "Men in Black: International", $ 28.5 million ($ 73.7 million international).
2. "The Secret Life of Pets 2", $ 23.8 million.
3. "Aladdin", $ 16.7 million.
4. "Dark Phoenix", $ 9 million.
5. "Rocketman", $ 8.8 million.
6. "Shaft", $ 8.3 million.
7. "Godzilla: The King of Monsters", $ 8.1 million.
8. "John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum", $ 6.1 million.
9. "Late Night", $ 5.1 million.
10. "Ma", 3.6 million dollars.