Marvel Studios’ “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” has crossed $650 million at the global box office, earning $61 million domestically this weekend, though its second weekend total is lower than some of its MCU counterparts released in early May.
First the somewhat bad news: this domestic result represents a 67% drop from the film’s $187 million domestic opening. By comparison, 2015’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” which opened to $191 million and 2016’s “Captain America: Civil War,” which opened to $179 million, had holds of 59.5% and earned second-weekend totals of over $70 million. This is also lower than the $66 million second weekend that “The Batman” earned earlier this year.
This is likely attributable to the weaker audience reception for “Doctor Strange 2,” which while still generally positive was not widely praised like the films listed above. Director Sam Raimi’s signature macabre style may also be decreasing turnout from families with younger children even though it is toned down for a PG-13 rating.
But neither Disney nor theaters will be displeased with these numbers as “Doctor Strange 2” stands at $292 million domestically and $688 million worldwide. By next weekend, the film will become the fourth Hollywood release and sixth film overall to cross the $750 million global mark.
As usual, there was little in the way of new releases on the weekend following a new Marvel release. The sole newcomer in the top 5 is Universal/Blumhouse’s “Firestarter,” a Stephen King adaptation that has failed to launch in theaters with a domestic opening of just $3.8 million, putting it at No. 4 below the sixth weekend of Paramount’s “Sonic the Hedgehog 2.”
Reception for “Firestarter” has been very poor with a C- on CinemaScore to go with Rotten Tomatoes scores of 12% critics and 50% audience. The silver lining is that this film has a reported budget of $12 million, meaning that any losses that Universal takes on this film will be minimal and easily erased by the profit coming from films like “Jurassic World: Dominion” later this summer.
Elsewhere on the charts, Universal/DreamWorks’ “The Bad Guys” is No. 2 in its fourth weekend with $6.9 million, continuing to hold well with families as its totals lift to $66.2 million domestic and $165.5 million globally.
“Sonic the Hedgehog 2” has added $4.5 million in its sixth weekend, bringing its domestic total to $175.7 million. To give a sense of how much the Blue Blur has meant to Paramount, “Sonic 2” is now only the fourth film since 2015 to gross over $175 million in the U.S. and Canada, the other three being “A Quiet Place” and the last two “Mission: Impossible” films. Tom Cruise’s “Top Gun: Maverick” is expected to also join that group later this summer.
Finally, A24/AGBO’s “Everything Everywhere All at Once” takes the No. 5 spot once again with a $3.3 million total in its eighth weekend. With a total of $47.1 million, the Daniels film is now just roughly $3 million away from passing “Uncut Gems” as A24’s highest-grossing film in studio history.