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April 18, 2023

Deadline Hollywood: Guardians of the Galaxy 3 Is Tracking to Make... 10% Less Money on Opening Weekend Than Thor Love & Thunder

Oof. That's not great. Disney Marvel is counting on the last Guardians of the Galaxy movie (at least with the current cast) to restore the Marvel franchise to its past glories, but if it's tracking worse than Thor Love and Thunder, it's going to be another financial disappointment.

Disney/Marvel Studios' Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 landed on tracking today before its summer-season launch date of Friday, May 5, and it's looking like a $130M domestic start.

That's lower than the $146.5M stateside opening of 2017's Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2, which also kicked off summer, and distribution sources specify that the campaign for GOTG3 hasn't really fired up to its full potential yet. Hence, there's nothing to worry about.

Disney always says "everything's fine, everything's going exactly as we anticipated" before each of their recent bombs. They were still claiming this after the second week of bad box office for Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, for example, and that film failed to gross even $500 million globally.

And the movie probably cost $200 million or more, plus another $150 to $200 million to market. And given that the studio takes in half or less or a movie's receipts -- the rest go to distributors, and foreign distributors give them an average of 42% -- that means that Ant-Man brought in less than $240 million for Disney. And so they lost money. Again.

Marvel's core audience knows when the movie is coming out already. Yes, advertising will reach some of the normies who don't follow Marvel movie news, but it's getting harder and harder to convince normies to care about the MCU.

The highest domestic opening for a Marvel Studios movie post-pandemic belongs to Sony's Spider-Man: No Way Home ($260.1M). After that, it's Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, which started summer last year with $187.4M.

That said, GOTG3 was tracking lower in first choice compared to GOTG2, though strong among the under-25 sect.

Will the movie perform better if it's actually good? Maybe. But it's a "darker" story.

The rumor is that several main players will die.

Director James Gunn -- who now runs things at DC alongside Peter Safran -- and cast in interviews have mentioned that the threequel will be darker, focusing on the origin story of Rocket Racoon (Bradley Cooper). There's also a different Gamora (Zoe Saldana) from another timeline; this version never fell in love with Peter Quill (Chris Pratt).

Not sure a "darker" cartoon movie with talking animals and trees is going to light up the box office.

Valiant Renegade points out that the usual Marvel film is heavily front-loaded, and so 50% of the total box office take is usually collected within the first 5-7 days of release.

The total global box office winds up being 2-2.5 times the opening weekend box office.

Note that the $130 million opening figure is for its domestic take. There will be more money coming in from around the world. Ant-Man made 55% of its money overseas. So maybe Guardians of the Galaxy will have a $270 million global opening, at best?

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania opened at $120 million domestically -- just $10 million less than the current projection for GotG 3 -- and that was a flop.

Seems to me that Marvel is paying a price for 1, wokeness, and 2, pumping out endless "content" of a very mediocre or inferior nature.

And maybe Disney is realizing that it's not smart to alienate half of your audience.

If this movie does flop, expect more firings at Woke Disney Marvel. Even the big fat geek Kevin Feige might be handed his walking papers.

And if it flops, then Warner Bros.' plan to rekindle interest in the DC Comics movie universe by putting GotG writer/director James Gunn in charge of it will look like a big mistake.

Speaking of segueways, DC Comics' recent sales are terrible.

DC Comics went woke after they watched rival Marvel go woke and alienate half of their customers. DC Comics was actually forewarned that wokeness was toxic, and went fully woke even while Marvel was attempting to shed some of its wokeness.

In the face of steeply declining sales, DC Comics attempted to Hide the Decline by pumping out tons of Batman comics. Batman is DC Comics' best selling character, and since the 80s been the best-selling character in all of comics. (In the industry they speak of a "Batman Standard" -- judging the sales of other titles based on how close they can get to the hypothesized maximum, which is represented by the sales of Batman's main title.)

DC just keep spinning off new Batman titles and titles featuring members of "the Bat-Family" like Nightwing, Batgirl, Robin, Harley Quinn, etc. About half of the 60 titles DC publishes per month are Batman-related titles.

They are just taxing and taxing and taxing the Batman completionists, extracting more and more money from them because Batman completionists are nice generous cows to milk.

Critics kept warning DC that they were going to create "Batman Fatigue" and declining interest in the character.

And that now seems to have happened, as Spider-Man displaces Batman to become the best-selling character. Meanwhile, half of their other comics are pulling sales numbers low enough to require cancellation (in a healthy market, at least).

Let's say there are 30 Batman-related titles per month. They sell for about an average of $5 each (yes, this is not the comics industry you remember from your youth; they've had to constantly escalate prices to make up for the decline in sales.)

That's about a hundred and fifty bucks per month just to keep your Batman collection complete.

Here's a problem with milking completionists: Completionists will only spend all that money to complete their collection if they believe it's financially possible to complete the collection.

The moment you make it clear to them that you will attempt to milk them for every dollar by pumping out Infinite Product, they will give up attempting to complete their collection. And they won't just balk at buying the new titles that broke the camel's back -- they'll stop buying most of the titles that they were buying just for completion's sake.

Suddenly Batman Collectors who had been diligently collecting 30 titles a month will decide to scale back to just buying the two main Batman titles plus Nightwing and a few other books.

Will that happen? Only time will tell but yes, that will happen. You can only financially abuse someone for so long.

Speaking of abrupt transitions, here's another Woke Company paying the price for alienating its clients:

Horses... sunsets... wheat fields... veterans... cowboys... 'Merica... 9/11...

All empty imagery designed for propaganda purposes only. Yeah, they actually throw in a reference to 9/11 and tell us to "remember" 9/11, showing us the Freedom Tower that was built to replace the Twin Towers.

9/11, you say? Well now I totally want to forgive you and drink your Trans Beer.

Budweiser's new pro-America advertisement featuring its iconic Clydesdale horses has been ripped by critics who argue it reeks of desperation in the wake of the Bud Light controversy -- insisting it's too little, too late for the beer maker.

The patriotic ad, released on social media on Friday, features a Budweiser Clydesdale running across the American heartland as the narrator declares: "This is the story of the American spirit."

The timing of the commercial's release was quickly slammed on social media as Budweiser's parent company, Anheuser-Busch, continues to grapple with the backlash over Bud Light's partnership with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.

"Don't look now @AnheuserBusch @budweiserusa but the Clydesdale has already left the barn. The train has sailed, the ship has left the station," attorney Philip Holloway tweeted.

"Far too late for this pandering now," sports announcer Mike Perleberg added. "I've drawn my line in the sand against ridiculous wokeism and it is to consciously never buy or support an @AnheuserBusch product ever again and share that disdain among people I see consuming their products."


"Lol, hard pivot huh?" Angela McArdle added.

Ex-heavyweight boxer Ed Latimore also chimed in, writing: "Man, this s--t might have worked in the 80s, but the internet is forever."

They must really think that conservatives are stupid, ill-educated, easily-conned rubes, to think they could just throw in some 9/11 imagery and we'd all just coming running to thank them for exploiting the National Wound of 9/11 for cynical commercial purposes.

And obviously, they do think that. They hold us in contempt.

digg this
posted by Ace at 04:05 PM

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