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Why the Disney sequel scores below average



Despite first place at home box office, Disney's "Maleficent: Mistress of Evil" fell far short of expectations, showing that even the most powerful studio in Hollywood is vulnerable to missteps.

Maleficent "launched in North America with a matte bow of $ 36 million. This was an overwhelming result for a film that cost $ 185 million to cover worldwide marketing and distribution fees. The dark fantasy adventure starring Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning and Michelle Pfeiffer was expected to bring in some $ 45 million at the start of the weekend, but even those numbers would be a steep one at $ 69 million after the first movie was released Decline. Given its robust marketing spending, sources must speculate that "Maleficent: Mistress of Evil" must bring in at least $ 475 million worldwide to break even and get closer to $ 500 million.

With a gentle start in North America. "Maleficent: Mistress of Evil" will rely heavily on the international box office to minimize potential losses. A sign of optimism: The follow-up had a much bigger overseas opening, where it raised $ 1

17 million over the weekend and raised its global bounty to $ 153 million. Outside of the domestic market, "Maleficent: Mistress of Evil" recorded the largest market launch in China at $ 22.4 million, up 15 percent from the original. Another promising sign is that the first film earned $ 500 million internationally, twice as much as "Maleficent" in the United States. The film ended its box office with a massive $ 758 million worldwide.

"Every time you follow a successful movie, expectations are really high," said Paul Dergarabedian, chief media analyst at Comscore. "I do not think anybody expected the movie to open as much as the first one, but for whatever reason, this movie did not resonate in North America."

Evil "came to the screen five years after the original, letting the public's interest fade before the second post premiered. The sequel received critical reviews from critics, suggesting moviegoers that they'd be better off waiting for the movie when they inevitably hit Disney Plus, the studio's upcoming streaming service.

on the opening weekend were excited about "Maleficent: Mistress of Evil," and positive word of mouth could point to a long life in cinemas as Halloween approaches. While "Maleficent 2" has an average of 40% for lazy tomatoes by film critics, the PG film achieved an A Cinema score and a strong average of 96% for movie takers on rotten tomatoes.

"We are optimistic about the overall performance," said Cathleen Taff, Disney's president for global distribution. "With good word of mouth, the audience will be interested in the movie."

Taff adds, "Given the competition in China with & # 39; Gemini Man & # 39 ;, and local projects, we are thrilled with the results."

It is possible that Warner Bros. & # 39; "Joker" has violated the opening event of "Maleficent: Mistress of Evil" despite his R rating. Joaquin Phoenix's disturbing attitude towards Batman's famous adversary attracts a much broader audience than expected and remains strong at the global box office. On the third theater weekend, Joker added another $ 29 million in North America and increased its domestic line to $ 247 million, representing a worldwide record of $ 737 million. Over 50% of viewers on the opening weekend of "Maleficent 2" were over 25 years old.

"Joker" basically pushes all viewers and plays like a summer blockbuster, "said Dergarabedian." It creates a competitive environment [popcorn season] in October, and it has turned out to be a huge contest for any movie. "

Until this weekend, Disney's" Dumbo "was the unfortunate badge for the year's worst opening at $ 46 million in North America, but the" Maleficent "sequel continued to beat the $ 71 million mark and continued to outperform director Tim Burton's overseas remake "Dumbo" cost $ 170 million and ultimately earned $ 353 million worldwide, which was a reason to party for most studios, but became a rare one Disappointment for Disney at a time when billion dollar wholesalers have become the norm, which also means that "Dumbo" has not earned any money, which is another sc represents a black mark for the studio.

Fortunately for Disney, the sequel to "Maleficent" does not seem to have much competition between family-friendly offerings in the foreseeable future. Apart from "Dumbo" and Fox remnants like "Dark Phoenix," Disney has set a nearly flawless year at the box office and set a new record for the year with the highest revenue for a studio in July. Since acquiring Fox in 2019, Disney now has more than 35% of its domestic market share. This is more than double the closest competitors, Warner Bros. (15%) and Universal (13%). Disney was also the first Hollywood-based company to feature five films ("Avengers: Endgame," "Captain Marvel," "Aladdin," "The Lion King," and "Toy Story 4") worth more than $ 1 billion in a single year Dollar has turned. These statistics could get even bigger when the year ends with "Frozen 2" in November and "Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker" before Christmas. If a studio is able to withstand a flop, it's Disney.

"Disney has, to say the least, one of the deepest banks," Dergarabedian said. "They have so many big movies on the way. For me it's not always about the opening weekend. What the bills pay is where you are at the end of your run. "


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