I’ve said for a long time now that Fox doesn’t know how to manage the Marvel Studios properties–currently the X-Men and the Fantastic Four–that they currently control.
So what do they do? They go and prove me right. X-Men: Apocalypse
, after a Memorial Day premiere of $79.8 million–enough to beat the competition
handily–fell a dizzying 66 percent
the following week.
And I don’t think anything to do with ‘superhero fatigue,’ a myth, like the Yeti
or its domestic cousin, the Sasquatch
Though what I think it does show is that moviegoers are wising up, and after an initial surge of viewers (composed mainly of fans of the characters) they’re staying away.
Which is why Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice opened so strongly. This interest, as I said, driven by the fan community (though it didn’t hurt that the movie was released all over the world at the same time, which mitigated the extremely negative word of mouth that would have otherwise done it significantly more damage) is enough to open a movie big, but in the long run, not enough to maintain it.
This process of front-loading–and typically high initial profits–makes studios way more optimistic about a movie’s performance than perhaps they should be.
But it’s whether or not a movie has legs is what matters most, especially in these days of $250 million+ budgets.
And Batman v Superman had relatively weak legs.
And apparently those of X-Men: Apocalypse aren’t much better.