Well I for one did not see this coming. Not only did Jurassic World win the weekend, it won the world. Literally. The final numbers are in and the Chris Pratt-and-dinosaur combination brought in over $208 million domestically, giving it the highest earning opening weekend ever. When The Avengers set the mark, it did so after carefully building an entire movie universe for five years, releasing five movies as setup. Jurassic World won simply with nostalgia and by fulfilling the (apparently desperate) need for dinosaurs that audiences crave. Nevermind the lukewarm reviews, people just could not stay away. This actually makes things interesting for this upcoming weekend, as the usually powerful Pixar might have some struggles knocking off Jurassic World in just its second week.
Inside Out – (PG) 94 min – No doubt one of the main reasons Jurassic World was such a hit was the fact that little kids absolutely love dinosaurs. Children across the world probably dragged their parents to the theaters to see Indominus Rex. But now that they’ve seen it, will they go again, or will they turn their attentions to Pixars newest effort, Inside Out? The merchandise is already incredibly popular, so Inside Out is probably poised to make a killing when it’s finally released. The animated film, directed by Pixar veterans Pete Docter and Ronaldo Del Carmen, is the clever story of a little girl’s move from a small town to a big city, told from the perspective of her personified emotions: Joy, Sadness, Fear, Anger, and Disgust. It’s colorful, quirky, and is already generating massive positive word-of-mouth. This will likely be Pixars best film since Toy Story 3.
Dope – (R) 115 min – Poor Dope. Despite currently sitting a whopping 96% on RottenTomatoes and being a huge success coming out of Sundance, this movie doesn’t stand a chance. Between repeat viewings of Jurassic World (as well as new people heading out to see what the fuss is all about) and the new offering of Inside Out, there just won’t be enough of an audience left to catch this one. This coming-of-age story follows Malcolm (Shamiek Moore), a geek living in a tough neighborhood who one day hopes of attending Harvard. One day, he obtains an invitation to an underground party that will lead him on an adventure full of humor and drama. I’m being a little hyperbolic when I count Dope out at the box office, as it does actually stand a chance of success. While budgetary information isn’t public yet, Dope likely didn’t cost much to make and should find a good draw from the elusive “urban market” (as producers like to refer to it). While it certainly won’t put up numbers to match Jurassic World or Inside Out, Dope could still prove profitable.
The Bottom Line – It’s hard to say if Jurassic World will suffer a serious enough drop-off in attendance to vacate the number one spot. One thing that I will note is that even though it seems like everyone saw Jurassic World, not everyone is talking about it fondly or with a fervor that implies they’ll see it again. However, even if it drops a complete 50%, it will still pull in over $100 millon, so that’s nothing to scoff at. Inside Out is poised to be one of Pixars best movies yet, and I fully expect the box office to reflect that.