“Spider-Man” Soars, “Alley” & “West” Tank
The estimates for Sony Pictures and Marvel’s “Spider-Man: No Way Home” domestic opening weekend just keep going up. Following $50 million in Thursday night previews, the film earned a further $71.5 million on Friday alone.
The projected weekend debut, which Sony had pegged at $150 million a few days ago, is set to be blown past sometime today and is on track to reach as high as $240-250 million by end of Sunday.
That would make it the third or fourth highest opening of all-time at the domestic box office, behind the two most recent “Avengers” films and on par with “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”.
This also marks the first film in the COVID-19 era to race past $100 million in its domestic launch and do pre-pandemic tentpole level business – something not seen since “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” opened to $175.5 million two years ago.
Worries over the omicron variant, which is surging in many key markets, appears not to have dampened audience reaction though has reportedly had an impact on the film’s global playability. Even so, the movie has still managed to gross over $100 million overseas in its first two days.
Critics reviews were glowing albeit a little measured compared to audiences who have been ecstatic with the movie scoring a coveted A+ CinemaScore, the second for the franchise following the first for “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse”.
Unfortunately, the love doesn’t appear to be spreading to others. Guillermo Del Toro’s neo-noir “Nightmare Alley” looks dead on arrival with the movie garnering a $1.19 million opening day headed for a projected weekend opening of just $3-4 million for the three days. It scored a B CinemaScore with audiences.
Also, those hoping Steven Spielberg’s ecstatically reviewed “West Side Story” musical would have legs are set to be disappointed as the movie, which opened to a disappointing $10 million last weekend, is expected to drop 65% in its second weekend for a $3-4 million or so haul this weekend after taking in just $1.06 million on Friday.
20th Century Studios has reportedly been banking on ‘West Side’ getting a potential bump from the upcoming holiday season, but if that is not materialising then a potential PVOD or SVOD launch might come sooner rather than later.