Back in 2014, Transformers: Age of Extinction was roundly trashed by critics but the film ended up being the only release to pass $1 billion at the box office that year. It seemed like Transformers was a critic-proof franchise. However the fifth outing, Transformers: The Last Knight, has had a very poor showing at the domestic box office which will pile pressure on its international presence. Transformers: The Last Knight took advantage of a 5-day opening to earn $69.1 million, although its official weekend opening was just $45.3 million. 2007’s Transformers opened to $70 million while Transformers: Age of Extinction earned $100 million over the three-day period. Luckily, the international opening was much better, and in total the $217 million production has made $265 million worldwide. Read more here.
Although it’s not been great box office news for Michael Bay, his star Mark Wahlberg doesn’t think he’s done with the franchise yet. “It’s one of those things where Michael has built this entire universe right, and he will decide what he wants to do and how he wants to do it,” Wahlberg told ComicBook. “Right now he says he doesn’t want to do another film and he says that after every film because they are so difficult to make and he pretty much has to do it single-handedly, even with all the help that he has because all of the movie is in his mind. So he’ll decide that and I would be hard pressed to see him walk away and put it in somebody else’s control and care.” Read more here.
Having revisited the Alien franchise with Prometheus and Alien: Covenant, Ridley Scott is also making his return to the world of Blade Runner this year, serving as producer on the Denis Villeneuve-directed sequel Blade Runner 2049. In a new interview with IGN, Scott has said he would like to expand this universe with more films. “I think that, you know what, George has always proved that. Of course there’s always something. George Lucas, you know, and the way he’s handled Star Wars has been spectacular. It’s what I’ve been trying to do to really evolve Alien, because in those days I wasn’t into making sequels, but now suddenly you realize, ‘Well, that’s stupid.’ I’ll use the word ‘duh’ again, right? You’d better get into sequels, duh. So that’s in a way what I’ve been doing.” Read more here.
A big topic of conversation at the moment is Hollywood’s lack of risks when it comes to their tentpole blockbusters. Disney and Lucasfilm, for example, just fired directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller because they didn’t think their vision worked for a Star Wars outing. But Luc Besson, director of the $180 million sci-fi epic Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, has said his pricey movie has already made back most of its money through pre-sale buzz. “Like every film company, we will only greenlight a project if at least 80% of its budget is covered. With Valerian, we’ve covered 96% of the budget with pre-sales. I heard that a newspaper did write a bit of shit about the company but actually this newspaper belongs to another company that is going to release a film at the same time. It sounds to me like a very, very below-the-belt attack. The risk to EuropaCorp is 4% of the budget so there’s no actual financial risk. The risk for the company is more one of notoriety. If the film is a big flop, we’ll lose credibility for making these sorts of films. The risk is not financial, but rather human.” Read more here.
One movie that will likely be a hit this summer is Spider-Man: Homecoming, which is released early next month. The film was shown to critics in America recently, and the reaction was overwhelmingly positive. Check out the reactions here.
Success for Wonder Woman now, as the movie has become the highest-grossing live-action movie from a female director beating 2009’s Mamma Mia!. The film currently stands at $652 million worldwide. Read more here.
Gary Collinson rounded up all the superhero news with The Week in Spandex, I looked at the Han Solo situation in The Week in Star Wars, Harrison Abbott how to Save the Dark Universe, Neil Calloway questioned Are Disney The Best People For Star Wars, while Henry Bevan looked back at the aborted Spider-Man movie directed by James Cameron.