‘Solo’ stalling at the box office with $101 million four-day opening

Lawrence Kim
May 28, 2018

Disney and Lucasfilm's Han Solo origin tale Solo: A Star Wars Story is on track to earn about $101 million in ticket sales from 4,381 theaters in the US and Canada over the four-day holiday weekend - easily topping the box office, but coming in well below the $130 million-$150 million previously projected by Disney.

As it stands, Han Solo looks to debut to a dismal $83 million for its three day weekend and may barely crack $100-101 million for the four day Memorial Day weekend.

The Memorial Day weekend isn't typically a huge movie-going time.

Even if "Solo" hit the high-end of its original industry projections, it wasn't likely to even have the opening weekend of 2016's "Rogue One", which took in $155 million, the lowest opening weekend for a "Star Wars" movie since "The Force Awakens".

Internationally, it didn't fare much better with $65 million taken so far and puts it significantly less than Rogue One's opening weekend of $134 million.

The dismal opening follows what has been an infamously troubled production that's generated negative industry buzz since summer 2017 when Lucasfilm made a decision to part ways with the original directors hired to film the movie, Phil Lord and Chris Miller. With the rejiggered production, the budget soared well past $250 million.

"Solo" also had stiff competition. "Deadpool 2" is expected to make $54 million over the four-day weekend, giving it an estimated domestic total after Monday of $218 million. "(Lucasfilm and Disney) need to give it some space and time over the next year and a half to build back up that sense of excitement and that audience anticipation".

The anemic returns mark a setback in Disney's efforts to exploit the "Star Wars" franchise created by George Lucas.

As it arrived in theaters, Disney might have been wishing it had instead made a Lando Calrissian spinoff with the red-hot Donald Glover, the star of TV's "Atlanta".

A bigger cause for concern though for Disney is the growing sense of apathy and rejection of Star Wars properties in China.

Solo will easily become the lowest opening Star Wars film in the franchise's history. After 10 days on release it now has $81.4 million.

The Paramount film tells the story of four aging friends - Jane Fonda, Diane Keaton, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen - who decide to read the steamy book Fifty Shades of Grey and find it stimulating more than just their intellects. "It is summer, after all", said Dergarabedian. The company revived the brand in 2015 with the first film in a new trilogy and plans for prequels to the saga featuring Luke Skywalker, Han Solo and Princess Leia.

The David Leitch-directed film stars Ryan Reynolds, Josh Brolin, Morena Baccarin, Julian Dennison, Zazie Beetz, T.J. Miller, Brianna Hildebrand, and Jack Kesy. He, too, is replacing a fired director after Colin Trevorrow departed last fall. Where available, the latest worldwide numbers for Friday through Sunday are also included.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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