Box Office Top 10 Film Film News

Box Office: So, Why Exactly Is The Amazing Spider-Man 2’s $91.6 Million Debut a Disappointment?

To see our other box office top 10 breakdowns please go here.

So, here’s what happened this weekend at the domestic box office: The Amazing Spider-Man 2  opened with a fantastic near $92 million, yet that still pales in comparison to what the Raimi films did, especially after you adjust for ticket price inflation.  Let’s break it down.

Top 10 Actual Domestic Totals (5/2-5/4)

1. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (Opening Weekend)


  • Opening Weekend Gross=$91.6 million
  • Budget=$200-250 million

Foreign: $116 million, now playing in pretty much every international market, for a new total foreign gross of $277 million and worldwide gross of $368.6 million

Captain America may have stolen some of Spider-Man’s thunder, unofficially kicking off the summer movie season a month early.  So, when it made $95 million in its opening weekend in April after the First Avenger only made $65 million in opening weekend in April of 2011 that came off as being more impressive than Amazing Spider-Man 2 scoring $91.6 million, the lowest opening for a Spider-Man film not released on a holiday.

Of course, it’s really difficult to make comparisons with Amazing Spider-Man 2.  The first Amazing Spider-Man was released the Tuesday before a 4th of July holiday, resulting in an official opening weekend of $62 million but actual 6-day opening of $137 million.  Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 2 similarly opened early around the 4th of July.  The fairest comparison, then, would be the first and third Raimi Spider-Man films which both opened over the first weekend of May, Spider-Man 1 (2002) with $114 million ($157 million at current ticket prices) and Spider-Man 3 (2007) with $151 million ($174 million at current ticket prices).  

So, should they feel disappointed?  Not when something just made dang near $92 million so quickly.  This is a bigger opening that Thor: The Dark World’s $85 million from last November, and even after inflation still better than X-Men Origins: Wolverine‘s $90 million debut in May of 2009.  While ASM 2 has become the worst-reviewed film in Spider-Man franchise history (even worse than Spider-Man 3), its campier approach really seemed to appeal to younger film-goers (51% of opening audience under the age of 25) and families audiences (33%).  Obviously, Spider-Man is still a very popular character because if the reaction to the first Amazing Spider-Man was really as negative as some make it seem then ASM 2 wouldn’t have just made nearly $100 million across 3 days.  This is a strong enough performance for Sony to remain confident about its announced third and fourth ASM films.  It’s just that after 5 films, with a 5 year break between the Raimi trilogy and Marc Webb reboot, the franchise is in a slight box office decline.

Domestically.  I mean a decline at the domestic box office.  ASM 1 ended with a higher foreign gross ($490 million) than either Raimi’s Spider-Man 1 ($418 million) or 2 ($410 million), and depending on what it does in China ASM 2 should just about equal that.  Sure, that’s not really fair since none of the Raimi films were afforded the luxury of 3D/IMAX ticket pricing, and for a variety of reasons we can’t actually adjust foreign grosses for inflation to put things into better context.  However, while ASM 2 could very well end up the lowest worldwide grossing film in franchise history that won’t be due to a poor showing overseas.   

2. The Other Woman

Kate Upton
For everything I’m about to say about The Other Woman resonating with female audiences, there are 2 obvious reasons why guys might be okay with getting dragged to see it with their girlfriends
  •  Weekend Gross=$14.4 million
  • Total Gross to Date=$47.5 million
  • Budget=$40 million

Foreign: $19.4 million this weekend  for a new total foreign gross of $45.4 million and worldwide total of $93 million

With $24.8 million last weekend, The Other Woman opened on par with Bridesmaids ($26.2 million) and well ahead of prior April chick-flicks like The Five-Year Engagement ($10.6 million) and The Big Wedding ($7.6 million).  Sure, it was generally reviled by critics (24% fresh rating on RottenTomatoes), but it was sold on a recognizable premise and made pains to make sure we knew these scorned women wouldn’t just be bitchy and catty towards each other.  So, look around at the rest of the top 10: do you see any other titles tailored almost exclusively to a female audience?  Here in it second weekend, Other Woman dropped just over 40%, but has already doubled its budget in worldwide gross.  Bridesmaids this is not since that eventual box office smash only dipped 20% its second weekend of release, but it’s far from a disappointment.

3. Heaven is for Real 


  • Weekend Gross=$8.6 million
  • Total Gross to Date=$65.5 million
  • Budget=$12 million

Foreign: A current foreign gross of $1.1 million for a worldwide total of $66.6 million.

On the one hand, this shouldn’t be happening.  We’ve had three faith-based films in successive months with Son of God, God’s Not Dead, and Heaven is for Real, and one faith-based adjacent (Noah).  With so much overlap in release dates and battles for the same exact audience at least one of these films should have failed.  On the other hand, can the faith-based audience really get burned out when it has been so thoroughly under-served by movies for so long?

4. Captain America: The Winter Soldier


  • Weekend Gross=$7.74 million
  • Total Gross to Date=$237.1 million
  • Budget=$170 million

Foreign: $10 million this weekend  for a new total foreign gross of $442.7 million and worldwide total of $679.8 million

At this point, Winter Soldier is the highest-grossing Marvel Studios film not to feature Tony Stark as Iron Man since only Iron Man 3 and The Avengers made more worldwide.  It’s an even bigger worldwide hit than Man of Steel ($668 million).  File that away for the debate about whether the third Cap film will really open opposite the Man of Steel sequel.  When you widen it out and look at all Marvel Comics films regardless of studio, the next movie up on the list for Winter Soldier to pass is the first Amazing Spider-Man ($262 million domestic/$752.2 million worldwide).

5. Rio 2 


  •  Weekend Gross=$7.71 million
  • Total Gross to Date=$106.5 million
  • Budget=$103 million

Foreign: $24.5 million this weekend  for a new total foreign gross of $286.8 million and worldwide total of $393.3 million

Rio 2 opened almost exactly even with the first Rio from 3 years ago, and its stayed relatively close ever since, falling off the pace by only around $9 million.  So, Fox’s Blue Sky animation branch failed to build the Rio franchise’s audience between films, but they didn’t really lose their audience either.  Like the first Rio, Rio 2 is a much bigger hit in international play, and should end up with a total foreign gross somewhere around the first Rio‘s $341 million.  

6. Brick Mansions


  • Weekend Gross=$3.6 million
  • Total Gross to Date=$15.5 million
  • Budget=$12 million

Foreign: No official foreign box office information yet

It was hard to tell what to expect from Brick Mansions.  How much of a boost would it really receive from being Paul Walker’s final completed film prior to his tragic death?  Absent that, it’s just a relatively low-budget action flick from the writing and producing talents of Luc Besson, the same guy who other than his Taken films has posted a recent domestic box office average of no higher than $36 million (e.g., 3 Days to Kill, The Family, Columbiana).  Well, Brick Mansions isn’t even doing that, opening lower than those three films last weekend, and now falling off by just under 63% this weekend.

7. Divergent


  • Weekend Gross=$2.1 million
  • Total Gross to Date=$142.6 million
  • Budget=$85 million

Foreign: Currently, its international gross stands at $107.6 million making for a worldwide total of $250.2 million

Divergent is now the highest domestic grossing YA book adaptation to not feature Harry Potter, Katniss Everdeen, or Bella Swan.  It’s a shame it hasn’t quite caught on as much internationally, but maybe they’ll be swayed through home video and be there for the sequel.

8. The Quiet Ones


  • Weekend Gross=$1.9 million
  • Total Gross to Date=$6.7 million
  • Budget=They’re not telling

Foreign: Currently, its international gross stands at $1.1 million making for a worldwide total of $7.8 million

Remember how Oculus was among the weakest-performing supernatural horror films in quite a while?  Well, The Quiet Ones is doing way worse, scoring the worst opening weekend for a supernatural horror film playing on over 2,000 screens last weekend.  It’s now on track to fail to make as much in its entire theatrical run as Oculus made in just its opening weekend ($12 million).  On the plus side, after The Quiet Ones’ dreadful debut last weekend it dropped less than 50% this weekend, fairly strong for a film of this genre. Still, this thing’s dead on arrival, banking on the likelihood of their budget + marketing costs being so minimal they might at least break even.

9. The Grand Budapest Hotel


  • Weekend Gross=$1.77 million
  • Total Gross to Date=$51.5 million
  • Budget=They’re not telling

Foreign: Currently, its international gross stands at $89 million making for a worldwide total of $140.5 million

Well, look who’s back.  After two weekends out of the top 10, The Grand Budapest Hotel snuck back in, though not really due to a surge in business but more because it’s holding stronger than the films which were ahead of it (Bears, Haunted House 2, Draft Day).  It has now easily become the biggest worldwide hit of director Wes Anderson’s career – the next highest worldwide earner is the $71.4 million for Royal Tenenbaums.  It’s also the biggest domestic hit, passing Moonrise Kingdom‘s $45 million, though if you adjust for inflation Royal Tenenbaums would edge up to #1 since its domestic gross from current ticket prices would be $72 million.

10. God’s Not Dead

God's Not Dead

  • Weekend Gross=$1.76 million
  • Total Gross to Date=$55.5 million
  • Budget=$2 million

Foreign: No official foreign box office information yet

God’s Not Dead is itself not quite dead yet, jumping back into the top 10.  It is currently the highest-grossing Christian film not named Passion of the Chris, Heaven is for Real, or Son of God.   

What Happened Outside of the Top 10?

Who Fell Out of the Top 10?: Bears (#8 to #11), Transcendence (#6 to #13), A Haunted House 2 (#10 to #14).  Transcendence exits the top 10 with a mere $21.3 million domestic, $54.4 million worldwide.  Ouch.  As with any such high profile box office failures let the chorus of “Hey, I saw that – it’s not that bad” begin. 


What’s Up Next?: Well, there’s an animated movie which looks like it should have gone straight to video (Legend of Oz: Dorothy’s Return), a family comedy which seems a better fit on the Disney Channel (Mom’s Night Out), and a Seth Rogen/Zac Effron team-up comedy which hopes to give us our first college fraternity comedy to hit big since Old School over a decade ago.  OMG, Old School is 11 years old.  I suddenly feel very old.

***UPDATED 5/6/14 With the Actual Box Office Totals Instead of Studio Estimates – Biggest Change?  Grand Budapest Hotel and God’s Not Dead switched spots in the top 10.

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