To avoid having to compete with the World Cup, an event that keeps half the population of the planet glued to its TV screens, Universal decided to let its dinos roam free and launch Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom in 48 countries, delaying the domestic opening to June 22.
And the strategy seems to have paid off, as the last film in the franchise based on Michael Crichton’s bestsellers and launched by Steven Spielberg back in 1993 (Spielberg is now the executive producer of the new series) attracted over $150 million. China is opening in a few days, but Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard back to Isla Nublar managed to draw $26 million out of South Korea, followed by $19.9 million in the UK and $10M in France.
Universal’s decision to wait two weeks to debut Jurassic World in the domestic market made possible for Ocean’s 8 to gain the first position, with $41.5 million. Overseas, Ocean made $12.2 million from 16 markets, which included Australia and most of Latin America, where it dominated. The Ocean series was based on Danny Ocean, the suave and charming thief played by George Clooney in the previous three films. Danny is dead, but his sister Debbie makes sure to keep the family tradition alive by organizing a major new heist. In the film, she is played by Sandra Bullock, who puts together an all-women gang: Cate Blanchett, Rihanna, Mindy Kaling, Sarah Paulson, Awkwafina and Helena Bonham Carter. Their target: a $150 million Cartier diamond necklace that a super diva, played with gusto by Anne Hathaway, will be wearing at the fabulous Met Gala. The audience of the new Ocean was mostly female (70%) and mostly over 25 (same number, 70%).
The success of the new heist caper at home and of Jurassic World overseas was a new blow for Solo: A Star Wars Story, which added $11.3 million out of 53 markets for a disappointing international total of $136.1M. It was in second position in the US, with $15.2 million and a domestic total of $176 million. The worldwide total now stands at $312 million and there is no rescue from China on the way, as the film has opened in the Middle Kingdom two weeks ago with a return of just $16 million.
Overseas, the Star Wars spinoff has actually been outperformed once again by Deadpool 2, that has reached a worldwide gross of $655 million. But Disney found consolation elsewhere, with Avengers: Infinity War. Analysts had been debating for weeks if the Marvel Studios creation would reach the magic mark of $2 billion. It did, and Avengers is now the fourth-highest global release of all time.
In other news, the horror picture Hereditary opened to $13 million. It stars Toni Collette, Alex Wolff, Ann Dowd and Gabriel Byrne. Hotel Artemis also had a major cast: amongst others, Jodie Foster, Sterling K. Brown, Sofia Boutella, Jeff Goldblum, Zachary Quinto and Dave Bautista. But all those names were not enough to save the new entry from a very disappointing $3.2 million debut.