What’s up, Geeks + Gamers? It’s ODIN!
The box office blues continued this weekend, with the only new “successful” wide release being the Zelda Williams (daughter of Robin Williams) directed and Diablo Cody-written film Lisa Frankenstein. Making roughly about $3,800,000 domestically in its opening weekend, it barely edged out the fifth weekend of The Beekeeper and lost to Argylle, which plummeted over 62% from its opening in its second weekend. The fact that Wonka, which has now been out for about ten weeks (since Christmas), is still in the Top 4 (though it has been quite successful itself) is utterly embarrassing for the Hollywood box office. Even though many might point to the Super Bowl as the reason no one went to the movies this weekend, anyone with a brain knows that can only account for a piece of the broken box office puzzle that has been floundering for weeks.
According to the-numbers.com the top 5 this weekend were:
At this point, there is no denying that Argylle is a complete and unmitigated box office disaster. Based on the second-weekend numbers, we can project the film will make somewhere between $85 and $120 million worldwide by the end of its run. Using the RCC method, it becomes even more obvious how much of a flop this movie is. Taking into account the film’s budget of around $200 million and a likely total cost of around $300 million when you add marketing, the film is currently at $271,619,500… which will likely make it one of if not the largest box office bombs of the entire year – and we are only in February. Not only does Argylle have an anemic domestic Presence, but it has also been struggling to make any waves overseas, where it is currently making most of its money. The work Hollywood did for years to expand to international markets by taking much lower returns and, at times, selling out to the demands of foreign governments to edit and censor their movies seems to have caused major blowback that has resulted in massive financial failures across the board for all major studios. Ultimately, the more money a studio spends, the more they inevitably lose because of these incredibly short-sighted deals. In the case of Argylle, we see a movie that will likely end up costing over $250 million in losses for Apple Original Films, which posted the bulk of the budget.
The early projections for Dune: Part Two are out, and the numbers are mixed at best. As someone who really enjoyed the first part by director Denis Villeneuve, I would love to see this film (especially if it is good) exceed the first, which was impacted not only by COVID but also by a day-and-date release. No one can accurately quantify how much of a role those factors played in its performance. Just because someone may have watched the first film on Max when it was first released doesn’t mean that they will watch the sequel, let alone pay for a movie ticket to see it.
According to the numbers on BoxOfficePro, the new film is projected to make between $55 million and $75 million in its domestic opening. Even box office shill “Tony” over on Deadline is reporting that Dune: Part Two will open to around $65 million. Where Tony gets it wrong, however, is when he says that no matter how you slice and dice this projection, it is a great start. The fact is that even with the day-and-date release of the first film, it made roughly $100 million worldwide when you add up all of the opening weekends together (via the-numbers). The domestic opening for Dune: Part One accounted for roughly $41 million, which means that the current projections are only marginally better. One would think that with Dune’s success on streaming, there would be much more than a $20 million difference between the two. When we factor in the average ticket price currently being $3 or so higher than back in 2021, that means they are only getting about 1.5 million more tickets in comparison. It is still far too early to say whether this means the likely $150+ million-budgeted movie will be a flop, but to say that this is great news or that it indicates a box office hit with the data we currently have would be extremely disingenuous. As much as I would potentially love for this film to be the biggest hit of the year, I still have to be honest with the numbers.
If you want further analysis on these or any other films, check out the full charting I do over at my website. Have a wonderful rest of your day, and, as always, God bless!