While Captain America: The Winter Soldier broke all sorts of box office records in its unusual April release date, highlighting the broad appeal of the Marvel brand, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 didn't quite carry the torch to new heights in its domestic summer opening last weekend.
Despite opening in the lucrative opening May summer weekend, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 couldn't topple Captain America's second solo outing at the box office domestically, nor good it reach the opening weekend numbers of any of Sam Raimi's three Spider-Man films from the original trilogy (adjusted for inflation) even with its 3D and IMAX ticket premiums.
We can't compare The Amazing Spider-Man 2 to its rebooted predecessor since the latter opened mid-week later in the summer of 2012, but we can compare it to previous Marvel releases in May, where it barely beat out 2009's X-Men Origins: Wolverine - which wasn't in 3D.
So while The Amazing Spider-Man 2's $92 million haul in U.S. theaters may seem impressive at first glance, it's lagging behind. That being said, the film is performing well overseas and will continue to earn for weeks to come.
The more interesting and direct comparison is with X-Men: Days of Future Past, which also opens this May and is coming off an inconsistent franchise track record, with series installments and spinoffs never quite reaching new financial heights ever since X-Men: The Last Stand burned a lot of positive buzz associated with the series.
Days of Future Past was originally scheduled for July before it moved up to May 23rd, and Marvel Studios' two releases for 2014 are experimenting with non-summer releases in April (Captain America: The Winter Soldier) and August (Guardians of the Galaxy). Out of the four, X-Men: Days of Future Past is expected to be the biggest earner. Variety reports that the X-Men team-up is on track to rake in $125 million domestically over the Memorial Day weekend.
Interestingly, with X-Men: Days of Future Past Fox is embracing the opposite approach of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 which saw Sony revealing plenty of footage (read: too much) and info almost a year before the film was even set to hit theaters. So much was revealed in trailers, TV Spots and other online featurettes that - despite some of that footage not matching what's in the theatrical cut - many moviegoers could piece together much of the film's plot without having to see it in theater. And now fans are clamoring for a release of the Director's Cut.
Note: The Amazing Spider-Man 2 sits as the lowest-scored Spider-Man film on Rotten Tomatoes. We're all waiting to see how X-Men: Days of Future Past performs among critics and fans.
Unlike the releases for Marvel-branded films Captain America: The Winter Soldier and The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Fox's latest X-Men installment opens day and date worldwide - meaning moviegoers overseas won't be seeing the film a week or two before North American audiences. Less spoilers, and one bigger event-esque weekend around the world for the mutants.
With a followup already scheduled for 2016 in X-Men: Apocalypse, along with other spinoffs and potential crossovers with Fantastic Four, much of the bigger picture plans for Fox's Marvel franchise rides on the success of Days of Future Past which aims to "fix" some of the perceived continuity issues with the series to date and potentially relaunch it in a new direction going forward. That's why Fox has spent so much on the production, which reports have listed as the most expensive superhero film of all-time, and the second most expensive film from Fox (sitting only behind Avatar).
For now, take another look at the current - well, past and future teams of X-Men coming to theaters in just a few weeks time with these 23 new X-Men: Days of Future Past character art. Note, these are the same promo shots of the characters we've seen in much of the previous artwork, but they have new backgrounds now!
Bryan Singer directs X-Men: Days of Future Past with newcomers Peter Dinklage, Omar Sy, Boo Boo Stewart, Fan Bingbing, Evan Peters, Adan Canto, Josh Helman, Evan Jonigkeit along with returning stars Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Nicholas Hoult, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Hugh Jackman, Anna Paquin, Ellen Page, Shawn Ashmore, Halle Berry, Lucas Till, and Daniel Cudmore.
X-Men: Days of Future Past arrives in U.S. theaters on May 23rd, 2014, followed by Fantastic Four on June 19th, 2015, X-Men: Apocalypse on May 27th, 2016, The Wolverine 3 (not the official title) on March 3rd, 2017, Fantastic Four 2 on July 14th, 2017, and an unspecified Marvel film on July 13th, 2018.
Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes for your X-Men comics and movie news!
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