Warner Bros/DC’s The Flash has raced to an estimated $9.7m in more than 3,400 theatres in North American Thursday previews ahead of its wide release this weekend.
‘The Flash’: Review
The strong numbers compare favourably with Sony’s comic book adaptation Venom, which earned $10m en route to an $80.3m opening weekend in October 2018.
Tracking has indicated The Flash will finish the weekend on around $70m. It has a Rotten Tomatoes rating of 68%. It could go farther than that given positive exit polling on Thursday, setting it up for solid word of mouth.
Key to that is Ezra Miller, whose lead performance is well liked in Hollywood, and a lot of screen time for fan favourite Michael Keaton as Batman.
However Miller has made headlines for the wrong reasons since 2022 after arrests and their declaration of mental health issues.
That forced the Warner Bros marketing team to largely keep Miller – who attended the premiere in Los Angeles – as a peripheral figure in its promotional efforts. The studio has also been unable to showcase talent during the writers’ strike on late-night talk shows. Andy Muschietti (It franchise) directed.
Separately Disney/Pixar’s Elemental earned an estimated $2.4m in Thursday previews. Tracking puts the opening weekend in the $30m range, which would be among the lower end of Pixar debuts.
‘Elemental’: Cannes Review
Pixar faces the considerable task of clawing back its brand status since Disney under the Bob Chapek regime sent most Pixar films straight to streaming during the pandemic. The last Pixar film to open exclusively in theatres was Lightyear, which opened in June 2022 on $50m and finished on a lowly $118m in North American and $226.4m worldwide.
Prior to Lightyear, the last exclusive theatrical release for a Pixar film was Onward in March 2020 at the start of Covid, which earned $61.6m in North America and $141.9m globally.
Elemental closed Cannes Film Festival and reviews have been generally positive with a 77% Rotten Tomates score.
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