Aside from my own review of the film, The Mummy is being decimated by critics, with a current 21% on Rotten Tomatoes. The Mummy is tracking domestically with a possible $35 million to $42 million opening weekend, though expect that number to end up on the lower side, due to two factors that have already heavily impacted this summer's movie season. First, moviegoers are paying more and more attention to critics and sites like Rotten Tomatoes and MetaCritic. Look no farther than Baywatch and the latest Pirates of the Caribbean film for evidence of this. No, this is not critics' fault; the issue lies with the quality of movies studios are producing, not shrewd reviewers (though they seem a little too harsh towards The Mummy). Second, sequelitis has hit American shores, with the latest installments in long-running franchises like Alien: Covenant and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales not hitting even their projected grosses, which were already much lower than the previous entry in each franchise.
But, as Hollywood relies more and more on foreign markets, a new trend is emerging; foreign audiences aren't as influenced by reviews, love endless sequels, and still believe in the movie star. A-List Stars like Tom Cruise, Johnny Depp, and Will Smith often can't carry a film in the US unless it is an established franchise, as these days the property is more important than the star power. Franchises like Transformers and Fast and the Furious, which are often reviewed unfavorably, do gangbusters overseas, even as the numbers in their titles continue to grow. So, with the aforementioned domestic Mummy tracking and reviews, is Dark Universe really in trouble?
The answer, is likely no. Deadline reports that The Mummy looks like it will gross $125-$135 million overseas this weekend, when it is released in 63 territories. Add that to its domestic haul and you're looking at a $160-$177 million opening for a film that cost $125-$130 million to make. If the film can reach the higher end of that projection, it would be a record global opening for Cruise, besting the $167.4 million brought in by War of the Worlds.
China, perhaps the most important international market for Hollywood productions, has The Mummy projected for a $40-$50 million opening weekend. The film has already set a record in South Korea, for the biggest opening day ever in the country, with $6.6 million. So don't write off The Mummy, or Dark Universe, just yet. China loves Tom Cruise!
How much do you let critics and movie stars influence your viewing habits? Has it had any impact on your decision whether or not to see The Mummy? Let us know in the comment section below!
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