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HomeBox OfficeBox Office Breakdown: Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse Opens Big With $120.5 Million,...

Box Office Breakdown: Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse Opens Big With $120.5 Million, Should Hold Off Transformers as June Gets Busy

The second month of the summer movie season has kicked off with the highest-opening movie of the summer, at least according to estimates, as Sony‘s animated sequel, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse opened better than both of Marvel Studios‘ 2023 superhero sequels.

This Past Weekend

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse came into the weekend with exemplary reviews (95 percent on Rotten Tomatoes) as the sequel to the Oscar-winning 2018 animated feature, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. It was always expected to come close to opening with $100 million or more, but it surpassed most projections with an estimated opening of $120.5 million in 4,313 theaters.

$17.4 million of that weekend came from previews that began on Thursday afternoon which was pulled into its $51.8 million Friday, which is indeed the best opening day for the year, although The Super Mario Bros. Movie did have a better first Friday with $54.8 million, which did not include previews. Still, audiences seemed to react well to the return of Miles Morales and Spider-Gwen (voiced by Shameik Moore and Hailee Steinfeld) with new characters voiced by Oscar Isaac and Issa Rae, which helped push the movie towards the best opening for the summer with an amount just behind the openings for 2019’s Toy Story 4 ($120.9 million) and 2007’s Shrek the Third ($121.6 million).

For whatever reason, Sony has not been releasing its CinemaScore for 2023 releases over the weekend, and that trend continued with Across the Spider-Verse, despite the fact that it might receive an “A” or even an “A+” from audiences polled, which should help it do well for at least for one more weekend. (Some sources have reported that it was indeed an “A” CinemaScore.)

Disney‘s The Little Mermaid dropped to second place with $40.6 million, down 58 percent from its Memorial Day opening with $186.2 million grossed domestically in its first ten days. It added another $42.3 million overseas to bring its international total to $140.5 million, with a global total of $326.7 million.

20th Century Studios released the horror film, The Boogeyman, based on Stephen King‘s short story, adapted by A Quiet Place‘s Scott Beck and Bryan Woods with Mark Heyman (Black Swan), into 3,205 theaters on Friday. Reviews were mixed and the movie’s “B-” CinemaScore wasn’t very promising, so when it only opened with $12.3 million (averaging $3,838 per theater), it may not have been too surprising despite support from King himself.

James Gunn‘s Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 3 continues to do quite well despite taking a 48 percent hit from Memorial Day weekend to take fourth place with $10.2 million (down 51 percent) but with $322.7 million since launching the summer movie season one month back.

It also managed to pull ahead of Universal‘s Fast X, which ended up in fewer theaters this weekend despite having been released two weeks after Marvel’s sequel, taking fifth place with $9.2 million (down 60 percent from Memorial Day weekend). So far, Fast X has only made $128.4 million in North America, but it’s managed to cross the $600 million benchmark globally with another $41.4 million made overseas this weekend for an international total of $474.8 million. China is well ahead of all other countries with $125 million grossed so far, but it’s that international money that’s going to guarantee that Universal

The Super Mario Bros. Movie took sixth place with $3.4 million, down 48 percent from Memorial Day weekend, but with $566.3 million grossed domestically and $1.3 billion globally, it’s still very much the movie to beat for 2023.

All the other movies that opened over Memorial Day crash-bombed in their second weekends with Sebastian Maniscalco‘s About My Father, starring Robert De Niro as that father, dropping to seventh place with $2.1 million (down 51 percent). It’s main comedy competition, The Machine, took a bigger tumble of 64 percent to eighth place with $1.8 million. Neither movie has grossed $9 million, and they’re not going to be able to retain theaters with so many big releases over the next few weekends.

A24 launched the biggest limited release of the weekend with Celine Song‘s Past Lives, one of the big winners at Sundance (at least in terms of massively favorable reviews — did you read Isaac Feldberg‘s review?) into four theaters in New York and L.A. Starring Greta Lee, Teo Yoo, and John Magaro, the movie brought in $232,000 in its opening weekend, averaging $58,000 per venue, a great start for an expansion run that will put it into theaters nationwide the weekend of June 23.

Weekend Box Office

Rank Entry Distributor Revenue Theater Count Total Revenue
1 Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse Sony Pictures $120,663,589 4,313 $120,663,589
2 The Little Mermaid Walt Disney $41,385,711 4,320 $186,992,778
3 The Boogeyman 20th Century Studios $12,356,486 3,205 $12,356,486
4 Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 Walt Disney $10,677,998 3,580 $323,189,452
5 Fast X Universal $9,598,830 3,467 $128,824,595
6 The Super Mario Bros. Movie Universal $3,368,740 2,344 $566,296,010
7 About My Father Lionsgate $2,057,738 2,464 $8,781,831
8 The Machine Sony Pictures $1,719,608 2,409 $8,678,044
9 You Hurt My Feelings A24 $769,814 912 $3,001,134
10 Kandahar Briarcliff Entertainment $750,133 1,737 $4,304,166

Data provided by The Numbers, powered by OpusData

Last Year

Top Gun: Maverick
Tom Cruise in Top Gun: Maverick/Paramount Pictures

The weekend after Memorial Day and the first weekend of June last year was a bit of a dead zone, because no studio wanted to go up against the second weekend of Tom Cruise‘s Top Gun: Maverick, apparently. Two new movies did open, but both in fewer than 800 theaters.

It was little surprise that Maverick won its second weekend, but doing so with $90 million, a miniscule drop of 29 percent, was the first indicator that Cruise was on his way to his first mega-blockbuster. In fact, the movie ended its second weekend with very close to $300 million, a mark the actor had never achieved domestically.

Most of the top 5 remained relatively status quo, with Marvel’s Doctor Strange into the Multiverse of Madness remaining in second place with $9.2 million, down 43 percent with $388.6 million grossed domestically.

The Bob’s Burgers Movie retained third place but with the biggest drop from Memorial Day weekend, down 63 percent to $4.6 million with just $22.4 million total.

The two new movies that opened wide-ish were both horror movies, including David Cronenberg‘s latest, Crimes of the Future, which opened with just $1.1 million in 773 theaters or $1,446 per theater via NEON.

IFC Midnight opened Chloe Okuno‘s Sundance premiering Watcher, starring Maika Monroe, into 764 theaters where it opened with $826,775 or $1,082 per theater.

Upcoming 

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts
Optimus Primal (L) and Optimus Prime in Paramount: Rise of the Beasts / Paramount

It’s looking very likely that Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse will remain #1 this weekend for a second week, and that’s despite the release of the latest installment of a hugely popular franchise, Paramount PicturesTransformers: Rise of the Beasts. Director Michael Bay is gone, at least as director, though he remains as producer along with Lorenzo di Bonaventura and others, after directing five hugely successful Transformers movies that grossed $4.3 billion worldwide.

Taking over the directing duties is Steven Caple, Jr., who directed Michael B. Jordan in Creed II, although he doesn’t have the weight that a name like Michael Bay brings, even though Bay’s last movie in the series, 2017’s Transformers: The Last Knight, only opened with $44.7 million and ended up with $130 million domestic and $602 million globally, roughly half the amount grossed by the previous movie. The 2018 Bumblebee spin-off didn’t even make that much, two things which seem to point to franchise fatigue.

Rise of the Beasts may get points among the fans for introducing the Beast Wars characters, but opening in the second weekend of the well-received Across the Spider-Verse (and in less than 4,000 theaters) isn’t going to help it, nor will the fact that the biggest names in the non-voice cast are Anthony Ramos and Dominique Fishback. (The voice cast is more impressive with the likes of Oscar winner Michelle Yeoh and… um… Pete Davidson.)

We’ll probably have to see how reviews pan out on Tuesday, but it’s hard to see this attempted revival opening with more than $50 million this weekend. Expect Rise of the Beasts to win Friday thanks to its Thursday previews, but Across the Spider-Verse will catch up over the weekend to win the weekend.

Opening moderately on Friday is Blue Fox Entertainment‘s drama Mending the Line, starring Brian Cox and Sinqua Walls (who also stars in The Blackening on June 16), though it might have a tough time making a mark in the top 10. Also, Magnolia Pictures is releasing Mary Harron‘s DaliLand, starring Sir Ben Kingsley as eclectic abstract artist Salvador Dali, and Georgia Oakley‘s period LGBTQ+ drama, Blue Jean.


Edward Douglas
Edward Douglas

Edward Douglas has been writing about the box office for 21 years at places like ComingSoon.netThe Tracking Board, and many others, but mostly under the banner of “The Weekend Warrior.” He’s also a film critic with bylines at Film JournalThe New York Daily NewsDen of Geek, and more.

Box Office Breakdown will be posted each week by Monday morning. You can read other features by Edward Douglas over at Below the Line and Above the Line.

Edward Douglas
Edward Douglas
Edward Douglas has written about movies for print and the internet for over 20 years, specializing in box office analysis, reviews, and interviews. Currently, he writes features for Below the Line and Above the Line, acting as Associate Editor for the former and Interim Editor for the latter.
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