Warner Bros’ ambitious endeavor to revitalize the DC Extended Universe with their latest big-budget superhero film, The Flash, is facing a lackluster performance, falling short of the studio’s expectations. The movie earned $24.5 million on its opening Friday, projecting an estimated debut weekend collection of $60 million. Unfortunately, this falls behind Black Adam’s $26.8 million opening day earnings from late last year, and we all know how that film fared. Nonetheless, The Flash managed to surpass Shazam! Fury of the Gods, which only brought in $11.7 million.
Comparatively, these numbers are far from the heights achieved by the franchise during its prime. Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice raked in $56 million and $81 million, respectively, on their respective opening days. The Flash was initially anticipated to accumulate slightly over $70 million during its opening weekend, a relatively modest figure for a film of this magnitude. The movie carries significant weight, and Warner Bros. faced numerous obstacles leading up to its release. Not only did star Ezra Miller’s personal issues invite negative attention, but the waning interest in the series added to the challenge. To generate excitement for The Flash, the studio employed various strategies, including securing positive testimonials from notable figures such as Stephen King and Tom Cruise. Additionally, James Gunn, the co-CEO of DC Studios, actively built anticipation through social media, while the trailers promised the thrilling return of Ben Affleck and Michael Keaton as Batman.
However, critical reception for the film has been lukewarm. It currently holds a borderline “fresh” score of 67% on Rotten Tomatoes and received a concerning B CinemaScore from audiences on its opening day. In his review, Ross Bonaime from FilmSweep noted that the movie lacks a cohesive narrative. With a reported budget of $200 million, The Flash will need to perform exceptionally well to outpace its competitors in what promises to be a crowded summer season.
In other box office news, Sony’s Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse is expected to claim the second spot this weekend, adding $8.1 million on Friday and reaching a domestic total of $260 million. The animated superhero sequel aims to surpass the performance of Disney-Pixar’s latest original film, Elemental, which debuted with $11.6 million on Friday. Pixar, once considered unbeatable, has been severely impacted by the pandemic and has struggled to deliver a hit since Toy Story 4 in 2019.
Transformers: Rise of the Beasts, after debuting at number one last week, experienced a significant fall, slipping to the fourth spot. It earned $5.2 million on its second Friday, marking a massive 74% drop. The movie’s domestic earnings stand at a mediocre $85 million, while it has crossed the $200 million mark globally. It is too early to determine whether Rise of the Beasts will be deemed a success or failure, but Paramount Pictures is heavily banking on its performance, with an entire new trilogy and a crossover project teased in the film’s conclusion. Lastly, Disney’s The Little Mermaid is expected to outperform the new release The Blackening, securing a top-five position.
At select theaters, director Wes Anderson’s latest film, Asteroid City, achieved one of the highest per-screen averages of the year during its debut in six venues. This star-studded comedy drama premiered at the Cannes Film Festival and earned $350,000 on Friday, averaging $120,000 per screen. You can watch our interview with Bryan Cranston, one of the stars of Asteroid City, here. Stay tuned to FilmSweep for further updates on the weekend box office.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about box office performance
Q: How is “The Flash” performing at the domestic box office?
A: “The Flash” is facing a slow start at the domestic box office, falling short of expectations with a weekend haul of $60 million, lower than anticipated. It earned $24.5 million on its opening Friday, lagging behind previous superhero films like “Black Adam.”
Q: How does “The Flash” compare to other movies in the DC Extended Universe?
A: In terms of box office performance, “The Flash” is not reaching the same heights as earlier films in the DC Extended Universe. Movies like “Man of Steel” and “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” earned significantly more on their respective opening days compared to “The Flash.”
Q: What are the critical reception and audience response to “The Flash”?
A: “The Flash” has received mixed reviews, with a borderline “fresh” score of 67% on Rotten Tomatoes. Opening day audiences gave it a concerning B CinemaScore. Some critics have noted issues with the film’s narrative coherence.
Q: How does “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” fare at the box office?
A: “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” is projected to secure the second spot at the box office, with an estimated domestic total of $260 million. It aims to outperform Disney-Pixar’s latest film, “Elemental.”
Q: What is the performance of “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts”?
A: “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts” experienced a significant drop in its second week, slipping to the fourth spot. It earned $5.2 million on its second Friday, accumulating a domestic total of $85 million. Globally, the film has crossed the $200 million mark.
Q: Which film is expected to outperform in the top five?
A: Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” is anticipated to outperform the new release “The Blackening” and secure a top-five position at the box office.
Q: How is director Wes Anderson’s film “Asteroid City” performing?
A: “Asteroid City,” Wes Anderson’s latest film, achieved a strong per-screen average during its debut in select theaters. It grossed $350,000 on Friday, with a per-screen average of $120,000.