The first two months of 2019 haven’t been kind to the domestic box office in the United States.
Box Office Mojo reports the box office has only brought in $1.23 billion compared to $1.58 billion last year. That’s a 22% decline. It’s the lowest first two months of the year going all the way back to 2014 which brought in $1.39 billion.
This current downward trend comes after a rather successful 2018 at the overall domestic box office with total gross of $11.8 billion with [easyazon_link identifier=”B079RLG83W” locale=”US” tag=”boundingintocomics-20″]Black Panther[/easyazon_link] leading the way with over $700 million followed closely by [easyazon_link identifier=”B07CLGV76S” locale=”US” tag=”boundingintocomics-20″]Avengers: Infinity War[/easyazon_link] with over $678 million. In fact, Disney films would make up the top three with [easyazon_link identifier=”B07DNL1DC8″ locale=”US” tag=”boundingintocomics-20″]Incredibles 2[/easyazon_link] bringing in over $608 million.
With Avengers: Infinity War, Black Panther, and Incredibles 2 leading the way, 2018 was a banner year with the highest unadjusted total gross ever. Even Warner Bros. [easyazon_link identifier=”B07GW2ZW5K” locale=”US” tag=”boundingintocomics-20″]Aquaman[/easyazon_link] added to the total with with over $330 million for the fifth highest film of the year. 2018 saw sales increase by 7.4% and tickets sold increase by 5.7% over 2017. It was a major upswing from 2017 which was a down year at the box office only bringing in $11.07 billion domestically.
The #1 movie so far 2019 is Glass which has brought in $105 million domestically. The sequel made over $30 million less than Split.
Kevin Hart’s [easyazon_link identifier=”B07MQ1P1DB” locale=”US” tag=”boundingintocomics-20″]The Upside[/easyazon_link] was just shy of the $100 million mark with $95 million. Even The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part only brought in $69 million.
President’s Day Weekend didn’t see any massive numbers. Alita: Battle Angel lead the way and has grossed over $42 million domestically so far. While Isn’t It Romantic has brought in $22 million and Happy Death Day 2U saw box office receipts of $14 million.
There might be some hope for 2019. Marvel Studios’ Captain Marvel will debut in March and the most recent projections see it raking it in $100 million on opening weekend. The follow-up to Avengers: Infinity War, Avengers: Endgame will drop in April which will more than likely provide a big boost to the box office. Disney also has Toy Story 4 and the final film in the new Star Wars trilogy on the docket. I would expect all of those to be big box office winners.
Paul Dergarabedian of Comscore points to Captain Marvel, “This lack has left the industry stuck in neutral as we await the arrival of Captain Marvel, which will begin a much-needed and inevitable revival at the multiplex.”
But while the latest opening weekend projections see Captain Marvel making $100 million, that projection is almost 30% lower than the initial projection. In fact, a number of Marvel Cinematic Universe fans have taken to Rotten Tomatoes to indicate they won’t be watching the film.
Many of these fans cite Brie Larson’s promotion of the film where she’s stated she wants less white men reviewing the film and covering the movie on the press tour. She’s also stated the film was her form of activism, and revealed that Marvel Studios came to her to make Captain Marvel a “big feminist movie.”
Not only does Disney have Toy Story 4, Star Wars, and the two Marvel films, but they’ve also got a live-action Dumbo film, Lion King, and Aladdin as well as an animated film called Artemis Fowl.
May will see John Wick 3 and the mega-monster film Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Disney will also release the live-action Aladdin which many fans seem to be skeptical of based on the initial teaser trailer.
July will see the return of your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man in Spider-Man: Far From Home. Disney will also release their new version of The Lion King, and Quentin Tarantino will debut Once Upon A Time In Hollywood.
Rounding out the end of the year will be some films that are expected to rake in the cash at the box office. It: Chapter II comes out in September. Joaquin Phoenix’s The Joker film comes out in October, and Frozen 2 will more than likely rock the box office in November. Finally, December will see the Jumanji sequel with Star Wars Episode IX hitting at the very end of the year.
What do you think? Do you think 2019 might be able to recover with some big hits at the box office or will we see a continued downward trend? What movies are you looking forward to seeing this year?
Let me know your thoughts about any of these releases!