While Saturday’s Mayweather vs. McGregor fight and Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards provided no shortage of star-studded entertainment options, neither of the above helped the weekend’s cratering box office numbers.
In a summer that saw Girl’s Trip top $100 million in box office receipts and Wonder Woman break a box office record for the biggest female director opening, the overall numbers for August 25-27 are calculated to come in at a paltry $65 million.
For comparison’s sake Universal reported that the 2014 animated comedy Despicable Me 3 grossed $99.3 million during its first five days of showing in North America.
In laymen’s terms, that means a Minions spinoff outperformed The Hitman’s Bodyguard, Annabelle: Creation, Leap, Wind River and Logan Lucky combined. For what it’s worth, the Samuel L. Jackson and Ryan Reynolds-powered action/comedy The Hitman’s Bodyguard managed to draw in an estimated $10 million.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that industry insiders are blaming the low turnout on a lack of quality choices.
“Why head to the multiplex and shell out $15 or more when the marquee looks like a Netflix menu of low budget fare?” wrote Anthony D’Alessandro of Deadline. “It only gets worse from here, because none of the studios are even attempting to open any wide releases next weekend over the Labor Day stretch. No wonder why exhibition stocks are dropping: Distributors on a mass level aren’t feeding the marketplace.”
Faced with the choice of dwindling numbers or hoping moviegoers opt for critically-panned choices like The Emoji Movie, studios such as Warner Bros. and Sony are “re-expanding” with additional showings of Wonder Woman and Baby Driver.
Statistically, things haven’t been this bad since September 5-7 of 2014 when a six-week-old Guardians of the Galaxy beat Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Let’s Be Cops. At this rate, we can only hope February comes soon, because #BlackPantherSoLit.