We’ve been waiting for Dune‘s arrival in domestic cinemas for quite some time. It already had a great start internationally with around $36.8M in its opening weekend across 24 markets in September. Now, we finally got a clearer picture for its domestic debut, as it garnered around $5.1M in its Thursday previews. Denis Villeneuve‘s latest film was also made available through HBO Max, which might give it a good audience boost. The numbers are looking good, as it drove 30% of Thursday’s box office, especially in Imax cinemas. It makes sense, as it was one of the big selling points of the film and ended up making up $1.5M of its total preview income.
As of now, the box office seems likely for a $30M+ opening, but Warner Bros. is keeping their prediction at around $30M to be safe. Its Imax performance is certainly a showcase of the film’s marketing and selling the “cinematic experience,” but the question remains if it can keep the momentum going into the weekend. HBO Max availability has hurt films Saturday’s at times, but only time will tell for now.
Villeneuve’s films haven’t always garnered box office attention but were still very popular with critics and audiences. As The Hollywood Reporter highlights, the biggest challenge lies in the franchise’s older draw. Even No Time to Die suffered a bit over the weekend due to the original novels’ older audience. It’s going to be exciting to follow its development.