The Mummy

‘Wonder Woman’ dropped a hefty 45% in its second weekend, down to approximately $57.2 million, but it was still enough to win the box office race.  Its biggest competitor was Universal’s ‘The Mummy’, directed by Alex Kurtzman and starring Sofia Boutella as the titular monster, one-time box office draw Tom Cruise, plus an appearance by Russell Crowe as Doctor Jekyll, setting up the studio’s shared “Dark Universe” in which all of its monster movies would be connected.  Unfortunately, the film was nearly universally panned by critics (an impressively awful 17% rating on Rotten Tomatoes).  Viewers were kinder, giving it a B- CinemaScore.

Universal had announced that ‘The Mummy’ would kick off a shared universe, similar to Marvel Studios’ and Warner Brothers’ superhero universes.  Universal has already announced new versions of ‘The Bride of Frankenstein’, ‘The Creature From the Black Lagoon’, ‘The Invisible Man’ (starring Johnny Depp), ‘Van Helsing’ (because that turd needed a reboot), ‘The Wolf Man’, ‘Frankenstein’ (with Javier Bardem attached), ‘Dracula’ (#deadhorse), ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ (NOT the musical version), and ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’.  Kurtzman was attached to oversee the entire ‘Dark Universe’ brand, but now… maybe not so much.  (Rumor has it…)

Despite the fact that most of those characters are in public domain and have been showcased in movies by various studios over the years– to audience indifference– Universal has invested a lot in developing these films.  Maybe they should try and get Brendan Fraser back, because as campy as those movies were, at least people liked them and they made money.

On the plus side, Universal is touting ‘The Mummy’ as Tom Cruise’s biggest international opening at $174M.  This is still a lower domestic opening than any of the previous ‘Mummy’ movies including ‘The Scorpion King’ which starred Dwayne Johnson instead of Fraser.  This version of ‘The Mummy’ cost between $335M-$370M to make, minus marketing costs.  It’s now questionable as to whether– even with global grosses– it will make that back.

Here is the Top Five:

  1. Wonder-Woman-Gal-Gadot-PosterWonder Woman (Warner Brothers) – $57.2M
  2. The Mummy (Universal) – $32.2M
  3. Captain Underpants (Dreamworks Animation/20th Century Fox) – $12.3M
  4. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (Disney) – $10.7M
  5. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (Disney/Marvel Studios) – $6.2M

Even though ‘Wonder Woman’ dropped considerably, it still made more in its second week than either ‘Batman V Superman’ ($51.3M) or ‘Suicide Squad’ ($43.5M).  This is even more remarkable because those two opened to bigger numbers than ‘Wonder Woman’.

All is not doom and gloom for Universal.  Keep in mind, ‘Batman V Superman’ and ‘Suicide Squad’ were not well-received by either critics or fans.  But ‘Wonder Woman’ is being universally embraced.  If ‘Wonder Woman’ can correct the course of Warner Brothers’ superhero universe, it’s entirely possible that future Universal Dark Universe films could compensate for ‘The Mummy”s poor showing.

Can ‘Wonder Woman’ stand up against next weekend’s arrivals?  Not likely, as Disney/Pixar’s ‘Cars 3’ is hitting theaters and should land at the #1 spot.  Also coming out are the bizarre-looking Scarlett Johanson comedy (?) ‘Rough Night’ and the 2Pac biopic ‘All Eyez On Me’, both of which may prove to be successful enough to take on the popcorn tentpoles that are currently ruling.

Check back to find out!

Source: Deadline