For the first time since the pandemic began, domestic box office revenue surpassed nearly $1 billion in June as some semblance of normality returned to multiplexes. Hollywood studios released a small army of event titles that found their audience, but executives remain concerned about a gap in the calendar when the summer crush ends.
The last time combined ticket sales topped $1 billion in any month was December 2019, when revenue rose to $1.16 billion. Final figures show June 2022 revenue coming in at around $986 million, according to Comscore. Got a last minute extension thanks to that number Minions: Rise of the Guruswhich pulled in a whopping $10.8 million in Friday afternoon previews on the last day of the month before opening to record-breaking numbers during the Fourth of July weekend.
Overall, it was an impressive 141 percent from June 2021’s $409.2 million, but down 11.6 percent from June 2019’s $1.114 billion.
“It’s still a huge success. And symbolically, if the month is just a few pennies short of the $1 billion milestone, it’s no less impressive,” says ComScore’s box office analyst Paul Degarabedian. The Hollywood Reporter.
Still, June’s sadness lingers for some box office observers.
“Publicly, there’s a lot of celebration about the box office recovery,” says a top studio executive THR. “Privately, there is a lot of concern about the coming decline in production.”
Another Hollywood executive added: “We are still in pandemic recovery mode and not back to pre-pandemic levels and attendance, but box office results this summer are much better than we expected.“
The boom was led by Paramount and Skydance’s Top Gun: Maverick, which has turned into an unstoppable hit, grossing north of $1.11 billion worldwide since its Memorial Day release and still going strong a month later. The only other title to cross the $1 billion milestone during the pandemic was December 2021. Spider-Man: No Way Home (That puts it at roughly $1.9 billion). J top gun The sequel is important because it appealed to all audiences, not just superhero-obsessed fans. In addition, both titles achieved success outside of China, where fewer and fewer Hollywood blockbusters are being released.
Among the movies fueling the rally, Marvel Studios’ Dr. Strange inside The Multiverse of Madnessreleased in early May, has crossed $950 million worldwide, while June’s Jurassic World Dominion The Fourth of July holiday weekend topped $800 million worldwide.
Warner Bros. Elvis — Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis Presley biopic — also won big with a better-than-expected $51 million opening over the June 24-26 weekend, thanks to older moviegoers (about 30% of opening weekend audiences was aged 55).
Family has been another challenged demo during the pandemic, but that narrative is changing dramatically with the launch of Light and Universal. Minions: Rise of the Guruswhich opened to $129 million (or more, once the final limit is reached) over the long Fourth of July weekend to secure one of the top debuts of all time for an animated film, Pandemic or any pandemic. Minions 2 Helped ease the alarm bells that went off last month when June’s animated summer pic light year, from Pixar and Disney, opened to $51 million domestically. And when light year Now that it has cleared the $200 million mark worldwide, including $100 million, it is still considered a huge disappointment.
Minions: Rise of the Gurus completes the circle in the sense that all segments of the audience are willing to consider resuming their pre-pandemic movie habits, provided there is variety on offer.
“I think things are getting better. The biggest problem for the box office is the content. When production is low, people tend to show up,” says Eric Handler, Wall Street analyst at MQM Partners. “We’re going to have a normal summer flood. So there’s really nothing to worry about for a while.
While the July marquee has plenty of interesting titles – including Thor: Love and thunder (July 8) no (July 22) and DC League of Super Pets (July 29) – The released calendar then becomes a big question mark for several months in terms of the number of events. A potential August breakout is Sony’s bullet trainplayed by Brad Pitt.
The next big superhero picture to come will be Warner Bros. Black Adamwhich opens on October 21 opposite the Julia Roberts-George Clooney rom-com A ticket to heavenfrom Universal. A week ago, Universal Halloween is over Opens in the cinema (the latter picture has a lot of potential but is still a genre title).
Analysts are counting on the Thanksgiving and Christmas box office to resume the momentum it has enjoyed in recent weeks.
In terms of year-end tents, some of the high-profile titles include Marvel’s Black Panther: Wakanda forever (November 11), Disney’s Thanksgiving animated presentation strange world (November 23), 20th century Avatar: The Path of Water (December 16), New Lines Shazam! Wrath of the Gods and DreamWorks Animation Grind in Boots: The Last Wish (both open Dec. 21), and Paramount’s Babylon On Christmas Day.
“Original films and low-to-mid-tier releases before November will probably translate into a short ‘cool-off’ period, before ramping up again for the holidays in the 2023 release calendar,” says Shawn Robbins. Box With the office analyst Box Office Pro.
Dergarabedian and Robbins are among several analysts who believe that household income could reach $7.5 billion to $8 billion by 2022, 70 percent of pre-pandemic levels. (In 2019, the North American box office hit a record $11.4 billion in sales.)
Domestic revenue is projected to hit $3.9 billion by July 4, 2022, according to ComScore. That’s up nearly 250 percent from 2021, but down 32 percent from 2019. Summer revenue fell to $1.96 billion through July 4, down nearly 200 percent from the same period in 2021 and 15 percent from 2019.
Robbins says: “It’s a remarkable turnaround from where things stood a year or two ago.” While I hesitate to say that all audiences have returned, the trend line is moving closer to the point where most are satisfied.