transformers age of extinction

~Matt Reed

TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION opened to an estimated $100 mil and nothing else even came close.  The next closest film was $85 mil behind.  Let’s break it down two ways.  First up, how did it perform compared to rest of the franchise?  Three of the four TRANSFORMERS movies have opened at or around $100 mil with REVENGE OF THE FALLEN taking in the biggest haul ($108.9 mil June 2009).  AGE OF EXTINCTION comes in second just above DARK OF THE MOON’s $97.8 mil opening June 2011.  The original was the only one of the four that didn’t approach a $100 mil opening ($70.5 mil July 2007).  That’s an incredible hold for a franchise that has certainly seen its share of ups and downs.

If history is any indication, AoE has the potential to go on to gross over a billion in worldwide ticket sales.  This is a rare franchise where each sequel makes significantly more than its predecessor.

TRANSFORMERS – $709.7 mil

REVENGE OF THE FALLEN – $836.3 mil

DARK OF THE MOON – $1.123 billion

This leads me into the second way to break this down.  AoE is the biggest opening of the year and the first to crack $100 mil since THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE opened last November. Those are domestic numbers and they’re all well and good, but the TRANSFORMERS franchise has certainly benefited from the expansion of American movies into the global marketplace.  One need only look at those worldwide numbers to see how important foreign monies are to the final total. For example, nearly 70% of DotM final tally comes from international box office. AoE is no different.  It opened with an astounding $201.3 mil overseas.  It earned $90 mil in China alone this weekend, which is a record opening in the country for a non-Chinese produced film. In just three days, AoE has grossed $301.3 mil worldwide against a $210 mil budget.  If you can basically print money like that then the Bay helmed franchise isn’t coming to an end any time soon.

Placing a distant second, 22 JUMP STREET earned an estimated $15.4 mil.  That pushed its total domestic box office to $139.8 mil.  After just three weeks in the theatre, 22 has earned more than the original did in 16 weeks ($138.4 mil).

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2 fell another 47% week-to-week.  It is now lagging behind the original by roughly $12 mil and certainly won’t make up the ground needed to surpass it.

Short Takes: Last week’s #1 film THINK LIKE A MAN TOO had the biggest week-to-week decline of any film in the Top 10 losing 64% of its audience and dropping to #4. CHEF and MALEFICENT both held well.  The former lost just 3% of its audience and the latter 36%.  MALEFICENT also crossed $200 mil domestic.  It’s now earned $585.5 mil worldwide.

Up Next: Three new films all opening on Tuesday ahead of the July 4th weekend:  the horror film DELIVER US FROM EVIL, the “found footage” family film EARTH TO ECHO and the R rated adult comedy TAMMY starring Melissa McCarthy.

Here, as always, are the weekend domestic estimates courtesy of our friends at boxofficemojo.com:

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