Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice had a massive opening weekend. There’s not really a debate about that. Its second weekend, however, saw a huge drop in ticket sales. While the percentage of drop-off might be concerning for some, Warner Bros. appears to be taking it stride. According to them, the drop isn’t as important as the absolute numbers, which are still pretty good overall.
While Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice did over $166 million domestically last weekend, the film lost the vast majority of those numbers in weekend number two. In the end, Dawn of Justice brought in $51.8 million, a 69 percent decrease compared to the previous weekend. While such a precipitous drop might be of concern to some, the studio is looking on the bright side. According toThe Hollywood Reporter, the studio is focusing on what they got, not what they lost. Studio exec Jeff Goldstein says:
We're not concerned with the drop. No matter how you slice it, to get to $52 million on any given weekend is an enormous accomplishment. We’re most focused on where we are in total. And our global number is huge.
To be sure, Jeff Goldstein isn’t entirely off base here. The fact is that $52 million would have won nearly every box office weekend that we’ve seen so far in 2016. The second weekend of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice still did better than the debut weekends of most movies that we’ve seen this year. Add to that the fact that Dawn of Justice had a record-breaking opening weekend and there’s simply no way that the movie doesn’t end its run with a huge number.
With an opening as big as Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice had, a significant drop is to be expected. It’s essentially impossible to keep a number that high from dropping. Even Deadpool, which had an opening nearly as good as Dawn of Justice and was significantly better reviewed, dropped almost 60 percent in its second weekend. Having said that, the difference between a 60 percent and a 70 percent drop is significant. Deadpool’s second weekend came in at $56 million, better than the $52 million of Dawn of Justice. Zootopia, which debuted to less than half of what Batman v Superman did, had a second weekend less than a million dollars behind them, due to not losing nearly as much of their audience.
At the end of the day, movie making is a business and as long as Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice makes more money than it cost, then it will be considered a win for Warner Bros, regardless of what other movies are able to do. Still, with some new major releases planned for this weekend, it will be interesting to see how much of what Batman v Superman currently has they’ll be able to hold on to.