In regular times, a movie as massive as Godzilla vs. Kong making just $32 million in its opening weekend would be an unmitigated disaster. But in our pandemic world, $32 million represents a pandemic record. Not only did Warner Bros. and Legendary Entertainment’s kaiju brawl earn $32 million over the weekend, but it made $48.5 million in its first five days of release.
That exceeded the industry’s expectations and easily marked the biggest debut since coronavirus hit. Prior to this weekend, “Wonder Woman 1984” had the biggest three-day start with $16.7 million, followed by “Tom and Jerry” with $14 million.
Godzilla vs. Kong played in 3,064 North American cinemas, the widest theater count since the pandemic began. The turnout among ticket buyers was especially impressive because the film is also available to HBO Max subscribers for no extra fee. Without providing any specific statistics or metrics, the studio said “Godzilla vs. Kong” had a “larger viewing audience than any other film or show on HBO Max since launch.” [via Variety]
The box office success of Godzilla vs. Kong certainly bodes well for the upcoming summer movie schedule, which will see the release of many of the 2020 blockbusters that were delayed due to the coronavirus. Mortal Kombat will release in theaters and HBO Max on April 23. Then, on May 28, both Cruella and A Quiet Place Part II will hit theaters, followed by F9 on June 25, Top Gun: Maverick on June 1, Black Widow on July 9, and Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on September 3.
“This is a great sign that the release calendar will stabilize and audiences everywhere will have a bonafide summer of blockbusters,” says Jeff Bock, a media analyst at Exhibitor Relations.