The Marvels Faces Box Office Struggle: In an unexpected turn of events, “The Marvels,” the latest MCU film, had a disappointing opening weekend. Since opening in Australian theaters on November 9, the film has earned $US2.1 million (roughly $3.2 million AUD), far below projections.
The international debut of “The Marvels” was $US47 million ($73.8 million), compared to “Captain Marvel,” which started with $US153.4 million ($241 million) and grossed $US1.13 billion ($1.77 billion).This unexpected downturn represents an unusual challenge for Marvel Studios, renowned for its consistent box office successes. Despite the film’s groundbreaking aspects—being the first MCU film directed by a Black woman, Nia DaCosta, and featuring a female-led cast—critics have been lukewarm, reflected in a Rotten Tomatoes score of just 62 percent.
This tepid reception is mirrored in audience responses both in Australia and globally. The film’s total international earnings of $US41.5 million ($65 million) are unlikely to offset its lackluster start significantly.
The underperformance of “The Marvels” raises questions about potential superhero fatigue among audiences, a concern acknowledged even by Disney CEO Bob Iger. Industry experts, including UCLA lecturer Tom Nunan, point to a growing weariness with the formulaic nature of superhero films.
Compounding the film’s struggles were actors’ strikes, impeding promotional efforts. Lead actress Brie Larson and her co-stars could only begin promoting the film after the strike’s resolution on Wednesday evening.
Taking a broader look at the box office landscape, “Five Nights at Freddy’s” and “Killers of the Flower Moon” trail “The Marvels” in earnings in Australia. In the US, Taylor Swift’s “The Eras Tour” concert film remains among the top earners for the weekend.
Margot Robbie’s “Barbie” continues to dominate, solidifying its position as the year’s biggest hit, surpassing $US1.4 billion worldwide. “The Marvels” underperformance stands as a pivotal moment for the MCU, prompting reflections on the genre’s future and the need for fresh approaches to captivate audiences.