Hollywood fearing worst box office summer in a decade

Thanks to too many sequels, franchises, and streaming services

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 currently sits atop the worldwide box office, Disney and Marvel’s sequel having already grossed over $500 million.

However, the latest box-office predictions state the first weekend of May through to early September takings will be down five to 10 percent on last year.

According to the Los Angeles Times, that’s a total loss of $450 million as the overall Summer gross in the US is expected to fall from $4.45 billion to $4 billion, the worst in a decade.

While seemingly a relatively small percentage, for the entire cinema industry it could be quite disastrous. The publication states how many executives are worried there are just too many sequels and franchises overflowing the market.

“Some of the tent poles are just not as strong this year,” 20th Century Fox head of domestic distribution Chris Aronson says. “Pirates of the Caribbean? It's the fifth one. Transformers? It’s the fifth one.”

Fox has just released their sixth instalment in the Alien franchise — Alien: Covenant — and are releasing the third in the rebooted Planet of the Apes series, War for the Planet of the Apes.

Whereas sequels were once guaranteed hits, thanks to more savvy cinema-goers — in part, thanks to social media — they have begun flopping. For instance, last year saw Star Trek: Beyond, X-Men: Apocalypse, Independence Day: Resurgence, and Alice in Wonderland all underperformed.

“Man, this is depressing,” one insider told LA Times. “It is just entirely sequels and franchises, and something’s got to give.”

This summer’s flagship non-sequel films include King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, Baywatch, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets and The Dark Tower — the former has received relatively negative reviews already while the other three have failed to excite major numbers.

Access unlimited streaming of movies and TV shows with Amazon Prime Video Sign up now for a 30-day free trial

Sign up

The only original blockbuster to be gathering much word-of-mouth buzz is Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk, starring Tom Hardy, Harry Styles, and Kenneth Branagh.

Box-office analyst Jeff Bock also spoke about the rise in streaming quality TV shows, thanks to the likes of Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu in the US.

It’s not all bad news though. Hopefully, with blockbusters not being so dominant, the likes of Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver, the Charlize Theron-starring Atomic Blonde, and A24’s It Comes at Night will make big sums this summer.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in