The final film of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Phase 3 and the closing chapter in The Infinity Saga has arrived. Sony’s Spider-Man: Far From Home is officially in domestic theaters today, hoping to capitalize on a long weekend with the upcoming Independence Day holiday. But the Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel actually swung into theaters early with preview screenings Monday, and the film had a deceptively impressive showing.
Spider-Man: Far From Home is estimated to have made between $2.8-3 million on opening night, according to Deadline. That might not sound impressive; after all, the box office dud Men In Black: International made $3.1 million in preview screenings a few weeks back, but this isn't a fair comparison. In fact, Spidey did more with less. That’s because Spider-Man: Far From Home had quite a unique release strategy.
With the modern model we are all accustomed to, a movie has opening night preview screenings on Thursdays, usually starting at 7 p.m., in advance of the film’s official wide release on Friday. The Jon Watts-directed Spider-Man film, a Tuesday release, instead began showings at midnight, evoking the days of yore when fans would scoop up tickets and dress up to see the biggest blockbusters first late at night.
Additionally, unlike Avengers: Endgame, which ran near round-the-clock showings in some locations, Spider-Man: Far From Home seemingly did not have showings after midnight at 2 a.m., 3 a.m. or 4 a.m. It only played at midnight. Moreover, it was an especially limited midnight release, playing in less than 1,000 theaters, none of which were in Canada.
So stated in context, Spider-Man: Far From Home pulled in $2.8-3 million at midnight-only showings in a relatively small number of theaters. And in case there is any doubt about the merit in that, Deadline says its sources are impressed by the Sony’s film’s performance given all these factors.
It’s difficult to say much about this opening night other than it’s impressive because of the uniqueness of the release. But for what it’s worth, 2017’s Spider-Man: Homecoming made $15.4 million in Thursday night previews from 3,450 locations with showings starting at 7 p.m. That film went on to make $117 million in its 3-day debut.
Spider-Man: Far From Home will have a 6-day opening that Sony is projecting at $125 million. Rival studios are a bit more bullish, figuring it will do around $140-150 million, and earlier tracking had the film as high as $150-180 million. So there’s a wide range this film could fall in over the Independence Day holiday weekend.
The final Phase 3 MCU film has several factors going for it that could help it to land in the upper echelon of those forecasts. For one thing, there’s the obvious Avengers: Endgame halo effect, with audiences eager to see what happens next after the second-biggest movie ever. Spider-Man: Far From Home is also enjoying hugely positive reviews and it currently sits at 93% on Rotten Tomatoes. That could be a precursor to great word of mouth for Tom Holland’s hero.
Spidey got his European vacation started early in Asia, with Far From Home opening in China, Hong Kong and Japan where it has already racked up $110.8 million. After the weekend, Spider-Man: Far From Home should be easily over half a billion at the worldwide box office.