As expected, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows took the top spot at the box-office in North America. But is it truly a success story? The movie had a production budget of $135 million which is higher by $10 million when compared with the predecessor of 2014. It however opened with $35.3 million over the weekend which is a big drop over the $65.5 million opening of the original. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows will struggle to hit the $100 million in the domestic market now, in complete contrast to the success story of the 2014 flick that earned close to $200 million in North America alone. Now we explore the potential in the foreign markets. 2014’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles earned a bit more than $300 million overseas, which is a figure that may again be possible for the sequel. It has earned about $34 million overseas as of now but it is yet to open in many major markets. If it somehow does manage to earn $400 million globally, it should be close to break-even figures, as per my estimate. Nonetheless, a sequel is made with the idea of earning bumper profits and that seems a lost cause for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows. One may need better than expected foreign earnings for this series to see a third film anytime soon.
The other wide release was the romantic movie Me Before You which opened with $18.3 million in North America to finish in the third spot. That is a pretty good opening for a $20 million budget film, especially when it had to compete with the likes of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows and X-Men: Apocalypse in the second week. The fact that both these movies did not truly deliver upto their potential would have helped in a stronger opening for Me Before You. The movie made another $8.2 million overseas for a global tally of $26.5 million till now. It should be more than doubling that tally before the theatrical run ends which would result in some decent profits for the studio. The Andy Samberg movie Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping utterly failed at the box-office with a $4.6 million opening. It too had a production budget of $20 million but it is far away from ever recovering it. Interestingly, the movie has earned a fair amount of praise and holds a 77% score on Rottentomatoes now. But its rather tepid promotion and the lack of star-power seems to have hurt its chances of turning the critical success into a financial one.
Last week’s X-Men: Apocalypse dropped sharply by 66% in its second weekend, slightly worse than the 64% drop seen by X-Men: Days of Future Past. The movie has earned $117 million in North America so far, but coming anywhere close to $200 million is out of the question now. Nonetheless, the movie’s fortunes in foreign lands are shining much brighter. After a strong opening in China, X-Men: Apocalypse has amassed almost $403 million worldwide. In this week itself, the movie will become the third-biggest earner of the X-Men series, but it is unlikely to join the $700 million plus club of X-Men: Days of Future Past and Deadpool. That would be an opportunity lost for Fox Studios. Alice through the Looking Glass dropped by 60% in North America though its earnings are better overseas. Globally, the movie has earned $176 million and should do better than last year’s disaster Tomorrowland ($209 million), but that is a small victory in what has otherwise been a heavy defeat. In other news, Disney’s Zootopia became the second film of 2016, after Captain America: Civil War, to gross $1 billion worldwide, a third of which came from North America. A truly deserved honour for this spectacular animated movie!
Here are the top 5 weekend earners at the US box-office (estimates):
1. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows ($35.3 million)
2. X-Men: Apocalypse ($22.3 million; second weekend)
3. Me Before You ($18.3 million)
4. Alice Through the Looking Glass ($10.7 million; second weekend)
5. The Angry Birds Movie ($9.8 million; third weekend)