This year’s box office has been tumultuous and much more inconsistent compared to past years. Since January, many releases have underperformed with the exception of surefire hits from Disney and Marvel. This weekend continues that trend with Dark Phoenix and Secret Life of Pets 2 coming in far below expectations.
Dark Phoenix earned only $14 million Friday and $10 million Saturday, coming in at a measly $33 estimated opening weekend according to Deadline. This is the lowest opening for any X-Men film in the franchise. Reviews may have put the nails in Dark Phoenix’s coffin, with 22% critic and 65% user scores on Rotten Tomatoes.
Globally, Dark Phoenix is still below estimates at $140 million, with initial targets at $170 million.
The Secret Life of Pets 2, another sequel film, surpassed Phoenix but still failed to perform as expected with an estimated $47.1 million opening. This is almost half of what was earned by the first installment, which brought in $104.3 million in 2016. The worldwide estimate is at $97 million.
Reviews for Pets 2 are significantly higher at 54% critics and 92% user score on RT, which may be a cause for its surprising win over a Marvel film.
This weekend marks another notch in the decline of franchise films after last weekend, Godzilla: King of Monsters did not live up to expectations. Men in Black: International is this upcoming weekend’s supposedly big release. As of now its fate seems dismal, but with the unpredictable box office this year, we’ll just have to see.