2ND UPDATE, Wednesday AM: Sony is calling the first day of Marvel’s Spider-Man: Far From Home at $39.3 million, and rivals see it at that level as well. Overseas is well north of $120M, as that amount alone was made in China.
Meanwhile, A24’s Ari Aster horror pic Midsommar got off to a smashing start in previews with $1.1M.
Spider-Man: Far From Home beats the Tuesday opening day of the previous record holder, Sony’s The Amazing Spider-Man, which posted $35M and legged out to a $137M opening over six days. Some still wonder why Sony went with a Tuesday launch, thinking there’s some money left on the table with discount Tuesdays, but hey, close to a third of yesterday’s business was made from Imax and PLFs. Also, as we mentioned previously, between today and tomorrow close to 49M people are expected to hit the roads for the holiday.
Screen Engine/ComScore PostTrak exits are fantastic with 4 1/2 stars last night for general audiences (who made up 68% of the crowd), 5 stars for parents and 4 1/2 stars for kids under 12 (combined 32% of the crowd). That’s a great 76% definite recommend. Far From Home drew a crowd that was 63% male, with under 25 dominating at 56%. PostTrak polls throughout a pic’s two-week run.
Midsommar previewed at 1,951 theaters and expands to 2,707 by Friday. The pic officially opens today. Early exits are 3 stars, and a 50% definite recommend. Males over 25 at 42% were the majority, followed by females over 25 (23%), males under 25 (21% — they liked the Aster pic the most at 78%) and females under 25 at 14%. The 18-34 set repped 74% of the audience.
Far From Home is in full play at 4,634 screens, which is the widest July release ever. The film played right across the country, with the East, South, Midwest, Mountain and West over-indexed.
UPDATED, Tuesday, 11:54 AM: Industry estimates have Sony/Marvel’s Spider-Man: Far From Home averaging around $43 million in its opening day, with the possibility it might be seriously higher or as low as $38M. Those figures include the $2.8M-$3M midnight showtimes.
These numbers do not come from Sony, and there are lots of variables here whether the pic goes up or down: Do the fanboys comes out on a Tuesday night? And in regards to the long run, will bad weather on July 4th spike business? Will tomorrow’s travel day for the holiday slow down business? All of this will determine how far north of $150M we get over six days.
Spider-Man: Homecoming posted a first Friday of $50.78M including $15.4M previews. Back out those previews, and Homecoming‘s Friday was $35.4M.
PREVIOUSLY, Tuesday, 9:24 AM: In a complete throwback to the way films used to open back in the early aughts, Sony began previews at midnight for Marvel’s Spider-Man: Far From Home in under 1,000 theaters. The studio is not reporting these numbers this morning, but we hear Far From Home made $2.8M-$3M from a handful of theaters, and note the sequel didn’t play in Canada.
Before you jump to conclusions on that gross, read on, but let’s just say sources this morning are impressed with the pic’s limited midnight release. As far as we know, Far From Home didn’t play at 2 AM, 3 AM,or 4 AM. This morning, Far From Home is in full play at 4,634 screens — the widest July release ever. Already, after a weekend release in China, Hong Kong and Japan, Far From Home counts $110.8M.
Note, no studio has launched a pic at midnight, arguably since 2012’s The Dark Knight Rises, and it’s really an apples-to-oranges comparison to put Far From Home up there with other full-blooded Thursday night previews, especially given the small number of theaters last night.
Some in the industry wondered why Sony launched Far From Home at midnight rather than a 7 PM (or earlier) blast. Much of that has to do with July 4 falling on a Thursday. Originally, Far From Home was set to open July 5 and Sony moved it ahead of the July 4th holiday to get some steam, a move its distribution rivals have praised. In doing this, it didn’t make sense to open Far From Home on Wednesday (with Tuesday previews) since close to 49 million people are travelling nationwide that day for the holiday, per AAA. So, Tuesday it was. Not to mention, Tuesday is the best weekday during the week gross-wise, with Monday typically dipping from Sunday.
In the wake of Warner Bros’ Dark Knight Rises and the 2012 Aurora, CO. shooting, studios largely retreated from midnight launches for pics. Still, films continued to play at that time and throughout the wee hours of the morning thereafter, i.e., most recently Avengers: Endgame in April where it had showtimes at 2 AM, 3 AM and 4 AM at the AMC and Regal on 42nd Street in NYC.
Sony’s Spider-Man: Homecoming, the studio’s first crossover with the Marvel Cinematic Universe back in July 2017, previewed at 3,450 locations on its first Thursday and grossed $15.4M off 7 PM showtimes, repping the studio’s best preview night to date. Homecoming wound up being the studio’s second-biggest opening of all time at $117M behind Spider-Man 3‘s $151.1M.
Sony is conservatively projecting $125M for six days for Far From Home, but rival estimates believe the pic has Avengers: Endgame gas in the tank and can zoom to north of $140M or $150M.
By Sunday, global estimates should reach a half billion for the Jon Watts-directed movie.