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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Brand familiarity isn’t everything when it comes to attracting audiences to the multiplex, and Hollywood is learning that lesson the hard way this summer with a slew of underperforming sequels and reboots. That so-called franchise fatigue came to a head this weekend with the releases of “Men in Black: International” and “Shaft.”
The writing may have been on the wall after neither an X-Men movie (“Dark Phoenix”) nor a Godzilla movie (“Godzilla: King of the Monsters”) could get moviegoers enthusiastic enough to turn out. But this weekend, down over 50% from last year, is the worst yet.
Weekend - Comscore - Media - Analyst - Paul
“This was a rough weekend,” said Comscore senior media analyst Paul Dergarabedian. “We’ve had some big franchises that are not resonating with audiences or critics.”
And there’s a common denominator between all the recent disappointments: Poor reviews. All four have been certified “rotten” on Rotten Tomatoes.
Men - Black - International - No - Spot
“Men in Black: International” took the No. 1 spot in North America, but it’s a dubious distinction for the Tessa Thompson and Chris Hemsworth-led reboot which isn’t exactly the franchise-revitalizer it hoped to be. Sony Pictures on Sunday estimates the F. Gary Gray-directed film earned only $28.5 million over the weekend against a reported $110 million production budget. The three previous “Men in Black” films all opened to over $50 million not accounting for inflation.
However, international audiences are helping the bottom line with the film earning $73.7 million from 36 markets, bringing its global total to $102.2 million.
Weekend - Release - Shaft - Generation - Franchise
The weekend’s other big new release, “Shaft,” which introduces another generation to the franchise, couldn’t even manage to carve out a place in the top five, which instead was populated mostly by holdovers.
“The Secret Life of Pets 2” got the No. 2 spot in its second weekend with $23.8 million. Disney’s “Aladdin,” now in weekend four, took third with $16.7...
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