Since July of last year, the box office recently experienced its first billion-dollar month. Not even Top Gun’s combined power: Jurassic World and Maverick: In June, Dominion was sufficient to reach that total. However, the objective has been met for the sixth month for the first time since 2019, prior to the pandemic’s onset. The most popular movie of the summer has been released in June 2023 (unless Mission: Impossible: Impossible is a huge success) and two of the biggest studio failures of the year, each of which gave roughly half of its more than $100 million in ticket sales to theaters. The final Indiana Jones adventure, which will open in a big theater this summer, will unfortunately fall into that latter category. It will earn more money than many other films this summer, but not enough to cover the high production costs.
After Superman II ($14.1 million) and The Cannonball Run ($11.7 million), 1981’s Raiders of the Lost Ark had the third-largest opening ($8.3 million). When Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom opened in 1984, its PG rating may have horrified parents, but it had the biggest opening of all time ($25.3 million), surpassing the previous year’s Return of the Jedi ($23 million). In the end, it nearly tripled Reynolds and Co.’s gross. After Beverly Hills Cop and Ghostbusters, it was the year’s third highest-grossing movie. It held that record for three years until Beverly Hills Cop II made $26.3 million in May 1987. That record would be broken two years later by Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, which opened with $29.3 million on a Wednesday. Three weeks later, Ghostbusters II ($29.4 million) broke that record, and a week later, Tim Burton’s Batman ($40.4 million) broke it even further.
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull became the tenth film to earn $100 million in its opening weekend, joining only nine other films by that point. Later that summer, The Dark Knight would surpass them all with a $158.4 million opening.) Despite Crystal Skull’s polarizing reputation, it was one of only three films that year to gross over $300 million (Iron Man beat it by about $1.3 million) and was the seventh best-reviewed summer movie with 77% on the Tomatometer. Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny opened this weekend with 67% approval from critics, $60 million from North American audiences, $70 million internationally, and a $295 million budget for the studio, despite early Cannes failures this year.
With Ruby Gillman, Dreamworks just had their worst animated debut ever: Teenage Kraken, which cost $5.2 million to launch. From 1997 to 2005, the studio’s heyday, it never released a live-action or animated film in less than 2,000 theaters. Paulie, a movie about a talking parrot, made $5.36 million at the opening in 1,559 theaters in 1998. This is the worst summer animated opening since Leap ($4.7 million) from Weinstein Co. at the end of August 2017.
You have to go all the way back to 2002 and the releases of Hey Arnold! if you want to find one as low in June or July: The Powerpuff Girls Movie, which opened on a Wednesday and made $5.7 million, and The Movie, which made $3.5 million over the weekend and $6.1 million in its first five days. Those two films cost $14 million each, while Ruby Gillman cost $70 million. However, that film isn’t the only one whose female sea creature cost the studio money this summer. Despite earning over $281 million in North America and more than $523 million worldwide, The Little Mermaid is still far from profitable. It has the potential to surpass its international total of $242.8 million, which currently stands at $275 million, and become the 14th film (out of 114) to earn more than $275 million domestically.
Spider-Man: Back to No, across the Spider-Verse 2 this week, but it’s getting close to Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Its domestic total is close to $340 million after a $11.5 million weekend and is only about $14 million behind Guardians as the summer’s highest-grossing film. The first month of release of Spider-Verse occurs between Star Wars Episode III: Spider-Man 2 and Revenge of the Sith, but it had a better fifth weekend than either of those films. We are still putting its final estimate somewhere between $390 and $400 million, despite the fact that it is still around $26 million behind the pace of Toy Story 3. The film has grossed more than $600 million worldwide.
Third place goes to Disney/Pixar’s Elemental, which made $11.3 million and has a $88.7 million budget, which is low by Pixar standards. Even though the film is still $16.5 million behind the pace of the Lightyear misfire from last year, it is faring much better than the $6.4 million it made on its third weekend in June. The film has only made more than $186 million worldwide, or about a quarter of what it needs to cover its expenses. The film’s current pace is comparable to that of Fox’s Robots from 2005. This would result in a domestic gross of approximately $125 million, surpassing at least The Good Dinosaur (also directed by Elemental), but it will still join Lightyear as Pixar’s worst consecutive losses.
No Hard Feelings, a comedy starring Jennifer Lawrence, remained No. 4 with $7.5 million this week. That brings its total to $29.3 million after ten days, which is the same as Horrible Bosses 2, which made $30.2 million after ten days and $8.4 million after the second weekend. There is hope that No Hard Feelings will at least earn more than $50 million from the $54 million it made at the box office. It has only raised over $49 million worldwide thus far, and additional $90 million is required to turn a profit.
Transformers: In its fourth weekend, Rise of the Beasts brought its domestic total to over $136 million, surpassing that of The Last Knight and Bumblebee. But for what purpose? The global total of just over $350 million is barely more than Bumblebee made just internationally. And Paramount wants to combine that with another Hasbro franchise, which has never made $400 million, which is a spoiler. The Flash hasn’t fared so well as a result of things like that, has it? With a $5 million weekend, it is already in ninth place after just three weeks. It has only made $245 million worldwide and hasn’t made $100 million in 17 days of release. It will have difficulty reaching $110 million because it is officially moving behind Green Lantern. Shazam!: If DC and Warner Bros. wanted the Black Adam numbers to look as good as possible, Since both The Flash and Fury of the Gods will not be able to compete with the entry that came before them domestically, they are definitely doing the trick.
Asteroid City, on the other hand, is doing well thanks to Wes Anderson. The film brought in $3.8 million and now stands at $18.1 million after opening in additional theaters this week. The film’s VOD release date was already announced by Focus for some reason less than two weeks before the company had their best theatrical success in over a year. Asteroid City, which should surpass Fantastic Mr. Fox and The Life Aquatic to join the top half of Wes Anderson’s all-time grossers, has made more money after 17 days than any Wes Anderson film to date due to a more aggressive release strategy. Meanwhile, A24 has expanded Celine Song’s Past Lives into an additional 610 theaters using a more passive approach up until this weekend. That led to a total of nearly $6 million and $1.5 million.
Another fifth chapter attempts to overtake this week’s fifth chapter the following week when Insidious: Opens the Red Door. The film, in which star Patrick Wilson makes his directorial debut, will not be shown to critics because Sony has decided not to. On the other hand, Adele Lim’s vacation comedy Joy Ride, which debuted at SXSW in March, has Lionsgate’s full support. The film hopes to become one of the summer’s sleeper hits and currently has a perfect 100 percent on the Tomatometer.