Entertainment smashing movie records, by Greg Tingle
- 15th May 2011
fans and insiders... did you know that first weekend
in May is when Hollywoods big money time commences.
After months of pretty average flicks at the box office,
studios start dreaming of $100 million dollar weekend
paydays from May through to August. Marvel Entertainment
based on the foundations of Marvel Comics has smashed
it's way in this movie season headed up by legendary
years Marvel entry is Thor, starring relative
newcomer Chris Hemsworth, a likable Aussie actor,
and Oscar-winner Natalie Portman. Experts tip Marvel
Entertainment may be in for its biggest film season
6 of the past 9 years, Marvel Studios has kicked off
the box office money making season with a comic book
blockbuster. Here's the proof movie fans and insiders...
Film Opening Weekend
Spider-Man $114 million
X2: X-Men United $85 million
Spider-Man 3? $151 million
Iron Man $98 million
X-Men Origins: Wolverine $85 million
Iron Man 2? $128 million
other studios attempt to take that first weekend in
May slot, they dont do nearly as well. Van
Helsing (2004, $51 mill), Kingdom of Heaven
(2005, $19 mill), and Mission Impossible III
(2006, $47 mill) all sluggish compared to the opening
weekends of the Marvel comics franchise.
comic books usually come with built-in name recognition
and an established audience of fanboys lining up to
see them. Marvel has so many comic book entities that
it can cement its future re the first weekend of May
for years in advance. For example, Iron Man
3? is already slated for release on May 3 of 2013,
even though the script isnt even done yet. That's
planning for you.
a budget of roughly $150 mil, and Marvels history
of May movies making close to $100 million their opening
weekends, youd think expectations would be massive
for Thor. But Thors
box office prospects arent up to typical comic
not one of the better known comic-book properties,
says Box Office Guru's Gitesh Pandya. "I dont
think it will come close to the Spider-man or Iron
Man numbers. If it gets to $70 million or even the
high $60 millions, it would be a very good opening."
primary audience is the typical comic book/action
crowd of young males. But Pandya thinks Thor
may be able to lure in the ladies also. Co-star Natalie
Portman is a hot property coming off her Oscar for
Black Swan. And they made sure to
let everyone know that Chris Hemsworth takes his shirt
off in some scenes, says Pandya. Thats
got to help with the ladies.
has gotten almost all good reviews, though the comic
book/action crowd tends to largely ignore reviews
when deciding where to spend their movie money.
against Thor is a high amount of competition.
This year, Fast Five reved along by opening
to surprisingly strong business ($86 million). Analysts
expect Fast Five to make around another
$35 million in the next week or two. Most of those
dollars will likely come from punters who would otherwise
be buying tickets to Thor.
other problem is its setting and tone, geared for
a pretty smart audience. The story and the characters
feel like something out of Shakespeare, which may
be why Kenneth Branagh was chosen to direct the film.
Much of the film takes place off Earth, on planets
of gods and giants. Its a different kind
of superhero film, says Pandya. Its
more cerebral than Iron Man, Hulk, or X-men. I wonder
if teenaged kids will get all the mythological references
can this $150 million film with an equally large marketing
budget make money if it only makes $65 $70
million in ticket sales its opening weekend? Pandya
says not to worry. "Thor is a more European character.
Hes better known there than he is here. Lots
of comic book movies skew so American that they dont
play well overseas. Thor should be the
could well be the reason Paramount Pictures decided
to open Thor overseas before its American
debut. It launched in many markets first, such as
Australia, and has already made more than $125 million
for Marvel, Thor is just one weapon in
its arsenal. After Thors credits
finish rolling, there is a bonus scene designed to
help set the stage for Marvels most ambitious
movie project yet
movie featuring Thor, Iron Man, Captain America, The
Hulk, and other comic book heroes. The Avengers
film will be also released in 2012. It debuts the
first weekend of May.
addition to films, Marvel also has plans for slot
games, action figures, lunch boxes, t-shirts and a
whole host of other Marvel super hero gear.
Media Man insider said "The Marvel Entertainment
movies are just the tip of the iceberg. There's the
slot games, video games, shirts, DVDs, action figures
and a whole lot more. Investors and fans should be
very happy with what's in store this season".
Marvel Entertainment icon Stan Lee would say, Excelsior!