A recent trend in how audiences have perceived the latest Marvel Studios films may have an impact on their next project. Though it did well at the box office, Thor: Love and Thunder was hardly a hit with fans and after a quick start at the box office, poor word of mouth stomped on Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania. Next up for the studios is Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 and according to a long-range box office forecast by Box Office Pro, James Gunn‘s threequel may bear the brunt of general audiences’ growing displeasure.
Citing low interest in pre-sales and a lack of social media buzz that typically accompanies Marvel Studios’ releases, Box Office Pro is currently projecting Vol. 3 to open between $120-$155M from May 4th’s Thursday previews through showings on Sunday, May 7th. While that’s the kind of opening weekend most studios would covet, it would be considered a disappointing opening for what’s expected to be Marvel Studios’ biggest film of 2023. An opening on the low end of that range would mean Vol. 3’s take would come in below Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2‘s $145M from 2017 which would certainly cause an uproar online and possibly behind the scenes at the studio.
There’s plenty of hope, however, that those numbers will climb–potentially significantly–however. Pre-sales aren’t a bulletproof predictor and the Guardians franchise is one of the MCU’s most beloved and well-received. The characters have grown from a group that not even casual comic readers recognized to some of Marvel’s most popular heroes and with there being little competition at the box office, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 could draw huge walkup-numbers. It will also be worth watching how reviews from the premiere and early screenings influence audiences, some of whom might be waiting to hear what critics have to say before dropping their dollars on pre-sale tickets.
Source: Box Office Pro