Paramount said today that Baywatch will open one day earlier than previously announced — on Thursday, May 25. In a Memorial Day weekend where Disney has a fifthquel to a popular franchise, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, there’s no harm in the studio getting out there early by a day to build up some momentum.
At this early stage, box office forecasts for Pirates are north of $115M for four days. Arguably, there’s some audience overlap here, with Baywatch’s older males and females and Pirates’ four quad. This despite the fact that with its R rating, Baywatch is the adult choice.
The date change means Baywatch technically will preview on the Wednesday night prior to Memorial Day. Paramount needs a win here after the Ghost in the Shell debacle and Baywatch would be a nice way to start the summer for it. The studio made a big deal out of the pic at CinemaCon with stars Dwayne Johnson, Zac Efron and Alexandra Daddario among the castmembers showing up amid beefcake and beautiful swim-suited bodies firing off towel guns.
Seth Gordon directs the feature adaptation of the 1990s TV series. If Baywatch works, it will bring hope to TV feature adaptations following the box office miss of Warner Bros.’ CHIPS ($15.7M).