After crossing $100 million worldwide on New Year’s Eve, Warner Bros.’ “Wonder Woman 1984” reached $118 million on the first weekend of 2021. But the pandemic is making its presence felt, as domestic grosses fell 67% from the film’s $16.7 million opening weekend.
The DC blockbuster took in $15.6 million worldwide this weekend, with $5.5 million grossed in the U.S. and Canada; theaters remain closed in much of Europe and Latin America. And while China has seen its strongest ever New Year’s Day weekend with $92 million grossed overall on Friday, that has largely come from local titles like “A Little Red Flower,” as “Wonder Woman 1984” has only grossed $25 million in the quickly recovering country, falling below the $28.5 million grossed in a pandemic-stricken domestic market.
While “Wonder Woman 1984” enjoyed the strongest domestic opening since the start of the pandemic thanks in part to strong turnout from hardcore DC fans, the presence of the film on HBO Max and the worsening nature of the pandemic was expected to keep more casual moviegoers at home. The film’s word of mouth has also faltered since release, as its Rotten Tomatoes score has dropped to 60% while CinemaScore reported a B+ from audiences, compared to an A for the first “Wonder Woman.”
Despite this, “WW84” is still No. 1 on the domestic charts, as North American revenue only reached $13 million overall. Universal’s “The Croods: A New Age” is second on the charts with $2.1 million in its sixth weekend and a $34.5 million total, while fellow studio release “News of the World” is in third with $1.69 million and a $5.4 million 10-day total.
Sony’s “Monster Hunter” is fourth with a $1.25 million weekend total and $6.3 million after three weekends, while Lionsgate’s “Fatale” completes the Top 5 with $700,000 grossed in its third weekend and a $3.09 million total. Just below it is Focus Features’ “Promising Young Woman,” which grossed $660,000 in its second weekend and has a $1.9 million total.
Overall, the pandemic has seen a catastrophic drop in box office revenue, with the 2020 box office finishing with an 80% year-over-year domestic drop and a 70% drop worldwide. The $2.3 billion grossed in North America this past year is the lowest seen by the industry in the 40-year history of the modern box office. Global grosses are expected to finish in the upper $11 billion range, well down from the $42.5 billion grossed globally in 2019.