“Shazam! Fury of the Gods” felt the fury of the market in its opening weekend, as the superhero film from New Line Cinema and Warner Bros. grossed a disappointing $30.5 million despite playing in 4,071 theaters, according to study estimates on Sunday.
The “Shazam!” The sequel fell short of modest expectations ($35 million) and the first film in the series (a $53.5 million opening in April 2019), falling on the lower end of modern DC Comics movie releases, between “Birds of Prey” ($33 million in February 2020) and “The Suicide Squad” ($26.2 million in August 2021), both rated R.
Directed by David F. Sandberg, “Shazam! Fury of the Gods” brought back Zachary Levi, Asher Angel, Jack Dylan Grazer, Adam Brody, and Djimon Hounsou, and added Helen Mirren, Rachel Zegler, and Lucy Liu. Critics, many of whom found the first film charming, were largely disappointed by this outing. It has a Rotten Tomatoes critical score of 53%.
Audiences were slightly more positive about the sequel, earning it a B-plus CinemaScore overall. The younger crowds rated the film more favorably.
“This movie was clearly lighter than we thought it would be,” said Jeff Goldstein, Warner Bros. head of domestic distribution. . toward. We are hopeful that we can get a big multiple.”
“Shazam! Fury of the Gods” cost $125 million to produce, excluding marketing and promotional costs. Internationally, it grossed $35 million in 77 foreign markets, including China, bringing its total earnings to $65.5 million.
The DC storefront at Warner Bros. has been undergoing a major recalibration for months now, with new bosses in James Gunn and Peter Safran forging a path for the DC Universe that will officially begin with a new “Superman” in 2025. The latest “! Shazam!” it was one of several holdovers from the old regime that will include “The Flash” in June and a new “Aquaman” in December.
“Part of our company’s total DC overhaul with Peter Safran and James Gunn is resetting it for the future,” Goldstein said. “It’s all about the future for us.”
For Paul Dergarabedian, a senior media analyst at Comscore, there is a silver lining to the fact that Warner Bros. and DC have “another No. 1 under their belt.”
“They are trying to readjust and realign the brand,” Dergarabedian said. “You don’t change the trajectory of a brand as big as DC without taking some time. This is a work in progress and this is one step on that journey.”
Second place went to “Scream VI” in its second weekend in theaters. The horror film, distributed by Paramount, has fallen 61% since its debut and grossed $17.5 million, bringing its domestic total to $76 million.
In its third weekend, “Creed III” grossed an additional $15.4 million to rank at No. 3. The film, directed by and starring Michael B. Jordan, has grossed $127.7 million in North America. Movies “65” and “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” rounded out the top five with $5.8 million and $4.1 million, respectively.
Following its Oscar sweep last Sunday, A24 added more than 1,000 screens for a rerun of “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” which earned an additional $1.2 million. “The Whale,” for which Brendan Fraser won Best Actor, played on 509 screens and grossed $145,230.
“What the public is enjoying right now is a diversity of content,” Dergarabedian said. “Overall, it’s shaping up to be a strong month with ‘Creed III’ and ‘Scream VI’ getting the best franchise debuts. We can see the same thing with ‘John Wick 4’.”