A wide range of films is driving moviegoers into theatres
Hollywood is hoping that its June releases will bust out all over, but May will be a hard act to follow. Fueled by the critical and commercial success of Fast & Furious 6 and Iron Man 3 (recently certified as one of the top five biggest box office hits of all time), the all-important summer movie season is off to its best start ever, with more than $1.04 billion in grosses thus far, BoxOffice.com reports. This surpasses May 2011’s $1.03 billion
Will the hits keep on coming? Friday, May 31 brings After Earth starring Will Smith and his son, Jaden. Advance critical reviews have not been kind, which makes this futuristic survival adventure directed by faded golden boy M. Night Shyamalan (a long way from The Sixth Sense) a test of the Smiths’ box office clout.
While the first month of the summer movie season has seen a preponderance of sequels (The Hangover III, Star Trek Into Darkness), there has also been an inclusive mix of adult-oriented and art house fare (Mud, Before Midnight), animated family fare (Epic) and even Shakespeare (Much Ado About Nothing).that are appealing to a wide range of moviegoers.
But wait; you ain’t seen nothing yet. Hollywood business website TheWrap.com projects that the films of June look “particularly strong,” with the Superman reboot Man of Steel (June 14), the Pixar sequel Monsters University, the Brad Pitt zombie-palooza, World War Z (both June 21), and The Heat, starring Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy, and the Die-Hard-esque White House Down, starring Channing Tatum and Jamie Foxx (June 28),
July, too, looks to be a bang-up month with the animated sequel Despicable Me 2, Grown Ups 2, The Lone Ranger, Wolverine, and Pacific Rim.
The number to beat for the summer is $4.32 billion, which the industry hit in 2011, when Harry Potter and the Dark Hallows Part 2, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Hangover Part II and Cars 2 drove the box office.
Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment.