Early box office predictions for Pacific Rim Uprising point to a disappointing opening for the sequel. While the first Pacific Rim movie under-performed at the domestic box office, its overseas global haul (more than $300 million) was ultimately enough to get Legendary to green-light a sequel. Uprising sees Daredevil season 1 showrunner Steven S. DeKnight take over directing duties for Guillermo del Toro, who parted ways with the sequel after it took longer than expected to get going. Meanwhile, John Boyega is now serving as the protagonist of the franchise - Jake Pentecost, the son of the late Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba) from the first movie.
The original Pacific Rim's $411 million worldwide gross is nothing to sneeze at, taken on its own. Problem is, del Toro's original giant robots vs. giant monsters tentpole cost a massive $190M to make, which is why Legendary was so hesitant to fast-track a sequel. Uprising has a relatively slimmer budget of $150M, but (unfortunately) early opening weekend box office projections don't bode well for the film's overall commercial prospects.
BoxOfficePro has revealed the current projections for Pacific Rim Uprising, and the sequel is only expected to open to $20M in the U.S. right now. This is nearly half of Pacific Rim's $37M U.S. opening take from back in 2013. Not only are the opening weekend numbers low, but Uprising isn't expected to heave great legs at the box office either. The outlet is projecting that Uprising will finish its domestic run with less than $50M in total, which again is only about half of what the original film did stateside ($101.8M).
Few were expecting Uprising to become a proper box office juggernaut, but these numbers are underwhelming all the same. Part of the problem could be the Uprising trailers, which haven't exactly gotten fans in general excited for the sequel. Many are also skeptical of the film's Transformers-esque look, and worry that the movie is missing that special touch that del Toro would have brought as director. If the actual box office receipts for Uprising fall in line with these projections, Uprising will need to do even better than the first movie overseas to warrant making additional Pacific Rim sequels and/or spinoffs.
The Pacific Rim brand name also doesn't carry a ton of weight at the box office at this point, which isn't great when looking at its release window. March has begun evolving into the kick-off for blockbuster season in recent years, and that will continue in 2018. Case in point, Disney and Ava DuVernay's highly anticipated A Wrinkle In Time opens two weeks before Uprising does, followed by the Alicia Vikander headlined Tomb Raider movie reboot one week after that. Uprising will have to compete with both of those films during its opening week, before then facing off with Steven Spielberg's Ready Player One adaptation a week later.
All things considered then, it's going to be pretty difficult for the Pacific Rim sequel to perform above the current box office projections for the film. Here is to hoping that Uprising proves up to the challenge, all the same.
- Pacific Rim Uprising (2018) release date: Mar 23, 2018