‘Glass’ Cracks Under Critical Pressure, But Still Leads Way With $40m+: Box Office Report
After just one Box Office weekend since ‘The Upside’ heated things up with its critic-defying $20.4m opening, M. Night Shyamalan’s latest release in the ‘Unbreakable’ franchise, ‘Glass’, seemingly bottomed out with a tepid $40.6m, after some cold reviews from the press.
It’s one of many examples of the Box Office’s nuances; we know that poor reviews can affect a film’s earning power, but which movies and why? And how can a film like STX’s ‘The Upside’, made on a budget close to double that of what Blumhouse produced ‘Glass’ for, earn half in its opening 3-days and be considered more of a success?
Well, it’s been two years of waiting for Shyamalan and co, whose last movie ‘Split’ ushered in the now-trilogy to unsuspecting cinemagoers with a $40m start in mid-January. Its B+ on Cinemascore was a smidgen over ‘Glass’s B, and its 76% on the Tomatometer was far from the lows of its successor’s 36% (although both hold around 80% as an Audience score).
Of course, ‘Glass’ and it’s $40.6m opening is by no means a failure, especially considering its 4-day holiday total will likely bring this closer to $50m. This not only stands as the second biggest MLK opening ever (behind ‘American Sniper’s $89.3m) but Shyamalan’s third largest of all time. Some may even suggest the film has hit its ceiling and gone as far as it can go in the Box Office, as seen in many popular franchises (remember ‘Deadpool 2’?).
However, among the majority remains the lingering feeling that ‘Glass’ could’ve performed better. The anticipation following ‘Split’ was expected to push the film into opening territories only seen by ‘Signs’, ‘Halloween’, and ‘It’, but instead led the film to earn just $500k more than its predecessor.
It’s possible, then, that Shyamalan, having polarised and burnt audiences over the years, and who are also preferred to create purely original content, is thus more vulnerable to bad reviews than the average director who may find safety behind an IP. It’s even a testament to all involved with ‘Glass’ that it didn’t open lower given the above, although it’ll overcompensate by a shorter Box Office run (we’re expecting a domestic finish around $100m).
At the end of the day, all is not lost for Universal, as a profit is likely to be reached by the time this you’ve finished this sentence. The dreaded ‘sequel-itis’ may have reared its ugly head again, but we won’t be seeing a ‘Fantastic Beasts 2’-level drop this time around. Horror movies are usually short and sweet, yet this is still expected to make a reasonable splash. The issue thus lies in the potential, the ‘what could’ve been’, the ‘if only’, which leaves the Shyamalanassaince in a more precarious position than expected.
‘The Upside’ continued its dazzling run by dropping only 26% on its way to earning $15m. Now sitting on a domestic total just shy of $44m, it’s already STX Entertainment’s 4th biggest stateside release of all time, behind ‘Bad Moms’, ‘A Bad Moms Christmas’, and ‘I Feel Pretty’. The question remains as to where it ends, with most forecasts (including our own) predicting a $90m finish, a magnificent achievement for a film we at first didn’t expect to break $30m.
This Box Office weekend also saw the release of ‘Dragon Ball Super: Broly’, based on the Dragon Ball anime series from Japan. Made on just a $8.5m budget by Toei Animation, the 20th Century Fox release sees heroes Goku and Vegeta fight off against a new Saiyan in Broly. Its $9.8m weekend continued from the impressive $7m earned from its opening Wednesday, and the film currently stands at $87.8m worldwide (including $21.9m from the U.S.). It seems heightened fan anticipation worked for one film this weekend, at least.
Made on just a $20m budget, ‘Glass’ will still turn a profit pretty quickly, but was its opening a disappointment? Where will ‘The Upside’ finish? And just how impressive is ‘Dragon Ball Super: Broly’? Let us know your thoughts on Twitter and Instagram – we’re at @JUMPCUT_ONLINE.