One was a slam dunk, the other was a blockbuster to be that came into the weekend stinking of behind the scenes drama. Yet in the end both hit theaters this week and obliterated expectations.
Monsters University is the prequel to one of the older PIXAR classics, telling the tale of how everyone’s favorite boogie men, Mike and Sully, learned their scare trade. The film took in $82 million over the weekend giving PIXAR its second highest opening ever, and their 14th strait number one debut. Lets just ponder that for a second, even as the creative armor of the premier animation house of the west shows some chinks in their armor, they maintain a perfect record on the financial side of the movie equation. The quality of the recent PIXAR films is up to some debate, but what can’t be denied is they still know how to make a movie people want to see.
While everyone and their mother knew MU would be a hit, the big surprise of the weekend came from the Brad Pitt zombie blockbuster, World War Z. The studio had modest expectations initially, and the general geek community had no expectations. The film veered far from the source material that is much beloved, the movie was plagued by re-shoots and seeming instability from the set, and it is a PG-13 zombie film which just feels wrong. Despite all of that working against it in the buzz department, the film was well sold and generally positive reviews helped to make all those other issues all but disappear. The net result was $66 million at the box office and a lot of turned heads.
The major opening weekend bank for World War Z was enough to make the film the second highest debut for a film that wasn’t number one, a consolation prize that actually carries a lot of weight in the box office world. Leading up to the weekend the studio knew the buzz was turning in their favor, they even amended their expectations to a bullish $50 Million, however the finally tally of $66 million is beyond all prediction. The biggest shocker of the weekend is the reviews and public reception of the film has turned even the cold hearts of your ever-loving Flickcast crew and the movie has reemerged on our geek cred radar.
Coming in third place was Man of Steel. There are two ways to report the second weekend of Superman, and for the sake of fairness we will present both:
1) Man of Steel withstands the barrage of two bonafide hits to rake in another $41 million in its second weekend. The DC icon has now raked in over $200 million in its run and internationally the film remained at the top stop giving the film an inside track to a half a billion in box office take by comic-con.
2) Man of Steel plummets in its second weekend dropping 65% to $41 million. The second weekend drop is far worse than recent comic book hits The Avengers and Iron Man 3 which dropped 50% and 58% respectively. The drop is actually more in line with recent front loaded comic films like Green Lantern and X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which dropped 66% and 69% themselves.
See how both are 100% true, yet depict a much different story. Well I guess like the film itself even the box office narrative of Man of Steel is divisive and up to the interpretation of the individual.
Next Week: The Heat, White House Down, and a bunch of people going to the theaters seeing other films they might have missed because the new movies are The Heat and White House Down.