The numbers are finally in and it looks like Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania was able to make up some momentum over the weekend, as while many feared it’ll be the first superhero film to drop above 70% in its second weekend, it held on stronger than expected and entered its second weekend at $32.2M, which is still a sharp 69.7% decline. As of now, it makes it the biggest second-weekend drop for any Marvel Studios offering, which was previously held by Black Widow at 67.8%. It also is above that of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice which held the record for the highest superhero drop in its second weekend at 69.1%. Though it could still go up or down depending on adjustments once Sunday’s final numbers are here.
It had similar critical reception and CinemaScore to Eternals, which managed to hold at 62% during COVID. Even as people want to call this the end of Marvel Studios, the opening does paint a very specific picture of how Marvel films currently operate. They will draw in quite a crowd early on (with varying success depending on the marquee character) but depending on its rewatchability will leg out better or worse. Perhaps Quantumania‘s weirdness and comic book-inspired direction just was too much for audiences, just as much as it wasn’t jelling with critics.
The film also had a harsher drop internationally with around 70% and currently is on its path to gross anywhere between $470M to $540M according to some estimates. Though it depends on its third weekend potentially inching it back up that could give us a better clue at where it is heading at the moment. Currently, it might make around 215M to 245M domestically. Quantumania currently stands at a still-strong 363.7M worldwide, and an insider seems to paint a different picture than the overreacting internet tends to:
Marvel takes something away from movie including Black Panther, including Avengers. I can say we’re incredibly proud of the film, Jonathan Majors does a fantastic job as Kang. It’s the movie we wanted to make. Box office is what it is, but it’s not going to stop people from going back to the theaters.
Quantumania still had a stronger second weekend than the previous two entries as Ant-Man stood at $24M and its sequel at 29M. So, it starts to paint the picture that this film is performing more like a regular Ant-Man threequel after a Captain America: Civil War-like opening. If word-of-mouth was better, the film would’ve had the potential to go much stronger but we’ll see if Marvel Studios has a reaction to it. Still, if it hits the higher parts of its current estimates, the film could still manage to outgross the first entry. The only issue is its much higher budget that probably leaves a bit of a stomach ache for Marvel; though it’s not the “end of Marvel” or “Marvel fatigue” going by its opening alone.
The lower Chinese market makes all the difference considering both previous entries pulled around $100M+ from that market which hasn’t had a Marvel opening since 2019 and generally saw far weaker performances from most Hollywood productions in that market. As stated earlier, the film is likely to break even at this rate, which is still better than most high-budget releases that we saw last year that faced far worse odds. Also Deadline pointed out that science-fiction shows struggle more in specific markets which we’re also seeing reflected here, as this was the most “out-there” direction the franchise took besides simple space travel to other planets.
Something worth noting though is that the second weekend may have seen an overall harsher drop, but its Friday-to-Saturday numbers paint a very curious picture. Thor: Love and Thunder dropped around 68% in its second weekend but saw a much softer jump from Friday to Saturday at around 34%. It’s Thursday to Friday was also at around 65%, which could be due to the stronger weekly performance during the summer. Quantumania had a stronger jump than Multiverse of Madness going into its Friday (+119% vs. +111%) and from there going into Saturday (+76% vs. 54%). The Saturday-to-Sunday drop is slightly harsher (-36% vs. -31%) but could be an indicator for its third weekend. The big question is the drop going into Monday and how it carries into the next week.
The weekend had a surprise opening for Cocaine Bear at $23M, which likely had its male audience take a bigger bite out of Ant-Man than expected. Though the film might also face a harsher drop next weekend, as unlike M3GAN or Violent Night, it got a softer B- CinemaScore with more mixed reactions from audiences. Still, it’s a good opening for the out-there black comedy and likely got its CinemaScore from the amount of gore that was included; something horror films generally struggle with when it comes to audience reception.
Source: Variety, Twitter, Deadline, The Numbers, The Numbers (Love and Thunder),