Wonder Woman 1984 has passed a major box office milestone, despite the present, less-than-ideal circumstances presented by the theatrical marketplace. The DC sequel, directed by Patty Jenkins, has grossed more than $100 million worldwide since its initial release. The movie rolled out in theaters domestically on Christmas day, while also making its way to HBO Max in the U.S.
Many movie theaters around the world are currently shut down over health and safety concerns. In the U.S., Wonder Woman 1984 launched on just 40 percent of the total screens available due to the closures. Despite that, the movie earned more than $16 million on its opening weekend, the best debut since theaters originally shut down in March of last year. It has similarly found relatively green pastures overseas, with the studio announcing that it has officially crossed the $100 million threshold. Jeff Goldstein, Warner Bros. Domestic Distribution President and Andrew Cripps, International Distribution President, had this to say in a joint statement.
"Congratulations to Patty Jenkins, Gal Gadot, Chuck Roven and the entire cast and crew who made 'Wonder Woman 1984,' allowing fans and film lovers to return to the thrilling experience of being at the movies. Audiences around the world where markets are open have been showing up to watch the next chapter in Diana Prince's action-packed story."
There is much to consider when taking these box office numbers into account. For one, HBO Max subscriptions were up significantly following the movie's launch. This means quite a few people opted to watch Gal Gadot's return as Wonder Woman from the comfort of home. Considering the first movie earned more than $100 million on its opening weekend domestically, there is a wide gap that won't be covered when all's said and done. But under the present circumstances, WarnerMedia wasn't expecting Wonder Woman 1984 to rake in that kind of money. It was ultimately a streaming play. So the fact that it's still performing at the box office is a relative win.
The budget is also a factor here, which is said to be in the $200 million range. Even taking the HBO Max uptick into account, the movie is still a long way from becoming profitable. Plus, Wonder Woman 1984 dropped more than 90 percent week-to-week in China, where it has earned more than $24 million total so far. If that rate of drop-off follows in other countries, the movie will have very short legs. In any event, Warner Bros. has already given the green light to Wonder Woman 3, with both Patty Jenkins and Gal Gadot returning.
One issue, aside from the current state of movie theaters, is critical reception. Wonder Woman 1984 now ranks as the lowest-rated DCEU movie on IMDB and it holds a not-so-great 61 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Even so, as far as the theatrical marketplace is concerned, a movie earning $100 million right now can be perceived as a good sign. It also might be encouraging to WarnerMedia, as the studio intends to release its entire 2021 movie slate both in theaters and on HBO Max on the same day in the U.S. This news comes to us via Deadline.