Thursday, May 30, 2024

Box Office: Looming Weekend Disasters For “Midway,” “Doctor Sleep,” “Last Christmas” After Weeks of “Joker” Success


Let’s face it, everyone got used to “Joker” killing it at the box office.

But looming in the distance was this weekend, with disasters coming from three studios.

Warner Bros., Lions Gate, and Universal will all take it on the chin this weekend after last night’s dreadful previews.

Warner’s “Doctor Sleep,” billed as a sequel to “The Shining,” made just $1.5 million last night. Apparently, it put everyone to sleep. Indeed, sleep cliche titles will be the game of the weekend. “Doctor Sleep Like an Ambien at Box Office” would be cute. How about “Pillow Talk”? Or “Doctor Sleep Is a Snore”?

Universal picked up $575,000 last for “Last Christmas,” a gigantic insulin overdose starring two of this year’s hot performers– Emilia Clarke from “Game of Thrones” and Henry Golding from “Crazy Rich Asians.” It looks like a bad Hallmark presentation. This goes straight to TV, maybe to Hallmark.

And “Midway”– from Roland Emmerich– why was this movie made? Does anyone care? Just $925,000 in previews? With a $125,000 budget, “Midway” is going to get strafed. There are a lot of seriously nice actors, all talented, including Woody Harrelson and Patrick Wilson, with singin’ Nick Jonas, Mandy Moore, Aaron Eckhart, and so on. But why oh why? Think “Red Tails.” These movies look goofy now. Go to TCM for the real ones if you’re crazy World War II adventure.

Meantime, a great movie, “The Irishman,” continues to sell out its tiny theater run in anticipation of heading to TV. This is an upside down season!


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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