As we reach the middle of 2020, there have only been a couple box office success stories: Bad Boys for Life and Sonic the Hedgehog. The latter became the highest-grossing video game movie ever to grace domestic movie theaters and was heading to a chance to clear Detective Pikachu’s worldwide record. Due to COVID-19, Sonic never hit theaters in a ton of markets, but it is finally starting to reach more global markets.
New Zealand continues to be a leader in getting the pandemic under control in their region, today marking its 13th day in a row without a new reported case, per AP. The country also saw a spike in its box office returns this past weekend that allowed Sonic the Hedgehog to rack up more dollars. Spain is also gearing up to play the video game movie in theaters next month. But one huge win for the movie is it’s new release date in Japan set by Paramount for June 26.
Japan is one of the highest-earning box office markets in the world, just behind the United States and China. The Asian country has already opened some of its theaters, many running at 45% capacity for the time being – but Japan’s biggest movie chain Toho Cinemas is reopening this Friday, with titles such as Hollywood’s Little Women, Dolittle, Rambo: Last Blood getting their chance to make some money in the market.
Time will tell how the coming reopening of theaters in Japan will affect the box office. Sonic the Hedgehog currently sits at an impressive $306 million worldwide, the second-highest grossing movie of the year. It may have many of our last moviegoing experiences since movie chains here in the U.S. closed back in mid-March. (It was Adam Sandler’s). The movie has already earned itself a sequel in the works from director Jeff Fowler.
In the past few months, studios have been breaking the typical rules of waiting for a 90-day window for a movie to thrive in theaters before making it available for home viewing. Along with movies such as Birds of Prey, The Invisible Man and Universal’s controversial move with Trolls World Tour, Sonic was released on VOD less than two months after its theatrical release date.
On the domestic front, theater chains are gearing up to safely reopen its theaters for July, although Cinemark’s guidelines do not currently require moviegoers to don masks. As the global pandemic has forced theaters to remain closed, AMC Theaters has reported $2.4 billion in losses.
Christopher Nolan’s Tenet could be a major player in the reopening of the box office in the United States as it holds its July 17 date. Stay tuned here on CinemaBlend for more updates on what’s coming to theaters.
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