‘Terminator’ Is Back and Leading the Box Office, but Trailing Forecasts
(Bloomberg) -- “Terminator: Dark Fate,” Paramount Pictures’ revival of the popular cyborg movie series, fell short of box-office forecasts even as it opened as the top weekend film in North America, marked by the return of original stars Linda Hamilton and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
- “Dark Fate” had weekend sales of $29 million at U.S. and Canadian theaters, Comscore Inc. said Monday. Analysts’ forecasts varied widely -- from $33.5 million to $42 million -- while the studio expected the low $30 millions. The performance was still enough to beat three other new releases, including the crime drama “Motherless Brooklyn” from Warner Bros. and the Harriet Tubman biopic “Harriet” from Universal Pictures’ Focus Features.
- “Dark Fate” garnered mostly favorable reviews from critics, with 68% recommending the picture, according to Rotten Tomatoes. The sixth movie in the series is a direct sequel to 1991’s “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” and was co-written by James Cameron, who penned and directed the earliest pictures in the saga.
- “Dark Fate” will still face a climb to profitability. Box Office Mojo estimated the production budget at $185 million, and studios typically spend tens of millions of dollars more to promote their films. The last picture in the series, 2015’s “Terminator Genisys,” took in $441 million worldwide, a sum that’s split with theaters.
- Sales from this weekend’s top 10 films declined 23% from a year earlier, continuing the stretch of tough comparisons for exhibitors.
- Walt Disney Co.’s “Frozen 2” later this month and “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” at the end of December should help the box office finish on a stronger note, though they are unlikely to reverse an expected decline in full-year ticket sales, according to Bloomberg Intelligence.
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