Following the slowest Easter box office weekend in more than a decade, Avengers: Endgame is preparing to shake things up this weekend as the upcoming Marvel superhero film is expected to launch in North America with what could be a massive $300 million debut at the domestic box office.
Analysts say Endgame is tracking a North American opening between $250 million and $300 million, with some trackers predicting that, based on the immense amount of pre-sale tickets sold, it will come in on the higher end of that spectrum, giving it the potential to break the record for biggest domestic debut of all time—a title currently held by last year’s Avengers: Infinity War ($257.7 million).
On Thursday, the film opened with a record $60 million from early preview screenings and is expected to bring in another $80 million from a whopping 4,662 theaters by the end of the day Friday.
Overseas, Endgame is expected to do even bigger business with a projected global launch between $850 million and $900 million, easily surpassing the $640 million made by Infinity War and making it the biggest global debut of all time. Some analysts believe the film could surpass $1 billion at the global box office in less than a week.
Pre-sale ticket numbers for Endgame are astonishing, with retailers like Atom Tickets reporting earlier this month that the film sold more tickets on their service in the first hour of pre-sales than Infinity War did in 2018.
AMC Theatres, which says its sold more tickets to Endgame than any other film in advance of its release, will have 17 of its locations open around the clock for more than 72 hours beginning Thursday night and ending Sunday in order to accommodate the high demand.
“With a desire to satisfy as many Marvel fans as possible on Thursday and through the weekend, AMC’s programming team is reviewing ticket sales theatre by theatre and adding showtimes later and later,” AMC’s EVP of worldwide programming Elizabeth Frank said in a statement.
The hype for Endgame, as wild as it may be, is understandable given the fact that it’s the long-awaited grand conclusion to the first three phases of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the first of which kicked off with Iron Man in 2008.
The film will pick up just after the grave course of events set in motion by Thanos at the end of Infinity War that wiped out half the universe and follows the remaining Avengers as they come together to take down the intergalactic villain once and for all.
Directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, Endgame features an all-star cast that includes Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Mark Ruffalo, Brie Larson, Chris Hemsworth, Paul Rudd, Jeremy Renner, Don Cheadle, and Josh Brolin, among many others.
‘Sonic the Hedgehog’ is being delayed because they need more time to work on his teeth
In a rather hilarious, but not particularly surprising development, Sonic the Hedgehog director Jeff Fowler made the inevitable announcement via Twitter this morning that Paramount has pushed the video game movie’s release date back by three whole months to February 14, 2020.
As you probably could’ve guessed, the delay has to do with giving the film’s visual effects team some more time to work on the previously announced redesign of the titular hedgehog, whose pearly white teeth and sexy jacked runner’s legs were the subject of a day’s worth of internet clownery last month.
While the discourse that resulted from the release of the Sonic the Hedgehog trailer was fun and all at first, the fact that the VFX team is being forced to go back and do a complete overhaul of the look of the main character is a little insane if you think about it.
The only people who were genuinely upset about the design of Sonic the Hedgehog were deranged fanboys who also probably signed all of those ridiculous petitions to remake the entire last season of Game of Thrones and cream their shorts at the thought of their “creative input” being listened to by the people in charge.
The fact that the team behind Sonic the Hedgehog actually caved to the demands of these people is concerning, to say the least, and I’m sad that we won’t get to see a goofy-looking hedgehog with pearly white teeth and sexy jacked runner’s legs in the final version of the movie anymore. Fuck fanboys.
— Jeff Fowler (@fowltown) May 24, 2019
It’s about time Rotten Tomatoes finally decided to do something about its troll problem
It’s no secret that Rotten Tomatoes has a troll problem. It seemingly began back in 2017 when Star Wars: The Last Jedi was released and thousands upon thousands of (fake) negative audience reviews for the film flooded the site from people who dubbed it “SJW propaganda” or some other dumb shit like that.
Since then, a number of other movies have been review bombed on Rotten Tomatoes, including Black Panther, which was targeted by white nationalist alt-right trolls for obvious reasons, and Captain Marvel, which was targeted by a bunch of very sad men who were upset over Brie Larson saying she wanted the film’s press tour to be more inclusive.
In an effort to prevent any future films from being review bombed, Rotten Tomatoes finally announced today that it will be introducing “verified ratings” and “verified reviews” from users they can confirm actually bought tickets to the movie that they’re either rating or reviewing.
“We believe an Audience Score made up of these Verified Ratings is the most trustworthy measure of user sentiment we can offer right now – one that gives entertainment fans a genuine audience assessment of a movie they’re considering watching, and one which puts significant roadblocks in front of bad actors who would seek to manipulate the Audience Score,” the site wrote in a blog post.
For now, users can only verify their rating or review if they purchased their tickets through Fandango, which acquired Rotten Tomatoes from Warner Bros. in 2016 and will benefit greatly from this change, but the site says theater chains like AMC, Regal, and Cinemark “have signed up to participate in our verification program and we plan to introduce other ticket providers as well.”
The new verified ratings and reviews will go into effect this weekend for new releases like Aladdin, Brightburn, and Booksmart, the latter of which you should definitely go see because it’s probably the best thing you’ll watch so far this year.
Linda Hamilton is back and ready to kick some robot ass in the ‘Terminator: Dark Fate’ trailer
Gentle reader, I regret to inform you that the long-awaited first trailer for Terminator: Dark Fate arrived early this morning and, as much as I hate to say this, I have an obligation to break it you: this thing just doesn’t look very good at all.
Sure, it’s cool to see Linda Hamilton back as Sarah Connor firing giant machine guns and rocket launchers at seemingly indestructible robots and tracking down her old buddy T-800 Model 101, played by Arnold Schwarzenegger, who now lives in a cabin in the middle of the woods for whatever reason.
Beyond that, though, there’s not much to be particularly excited about here. The slowed-down cover of Bjork’s “Hunter” sucks, the set pieces look incredibly lame and uninspired, and the CGI is…well, just take a look at what they did to poor Gabriel Luna in this shot:
It’s a first trailer, so take it all with a grain of salt, but the special effects for ‘Terminator: Dark Fate’ are clearly not complete. pic.twitter.com/hlWP3GPxvW
— Lights, Camera, Pod (@LightsCameraPod) May 23, 2019
That looks pretty fucking bad, right? My dude looks like a straight up cartoon character there.
Keep in mind, Terminator 2: Judgement Day came out in 1991 (28 years ago!) and yet the visual effects work in these movies has somehow managed to get significantly worse since then. I mean, how does that even happen? It’s truly baffling.
Either way, this is a Terminator movie we’re talking about here, so of course I’m still going to Dark Fate when it hits theaters later this year on November 2, but I’m going to do so with great concern. Consider me cautiously optimistic at this point.