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 USA 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. That is also at a budget far less than Solo, which after reshoots is speculated to be at $250 million (although some have claimed without sourcing it is upwards of $300 million).
Doesn't sound too awful, right?
This number would put it behind Rogue One's $155 million opening weekend and way behind the opening weekends of The Last Jedi and The Force Awakens. Solo was projected to potentially dethrone that movie, but it came nowhere close to doing that.
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But the mediocre reviews probably haven't helped either.
Anything that was associated with the name Star Wars was golden, even the prequels in their own way.
But by the end of day Friday, Disney hinted that the weekend wouldn't go according to plan as it drastically adjusted that projection to between $105 million and $115 million over the four-day weekend. The magic of Star Wars films gained the franchise millions of fans, both young and old. The film did even worse internationally, earning just $65 million for a global total of $148.3 million.
Proving all the industry insider remarks about Han Solo being a big mess correct, what should have been an easy "win" for Disney featuring one of the most popular Star Wars characters of all time, Han Solo is coming off as a major embarrassment and flop for Disney. But the rules change when you talk about "Star Wars". However, it wasn't enough to land the highest Memorial Day opening.
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The failures of Solo appear to be a result of a yearlong buzz of doubt and insinuation, as well as a general resistance in the culture to see someone other than Harrison Ford play one of cinema's most iconic rogues and scoundrels.
In third is another heroic blockbuster, "Avengers: Infinity War". Audiences weren't exhausted; they were pumped up for it.
Two of those re-worked movies still had greater per-screen averages than Solo, too. I think first of all this was not really a movie most fans wanted to see.
With all these factors combined, clearly for most, going to the beach or a barbecue was the better option this holiday weekend.
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