New Mad Max movie ‘Furiosa’ extends bad summer for Hollywood

The Memorial Day Weekend debut of Warner Bros’s “Furiosa” is spelling more bad news for the Hollywood industry as it prepares for an uncertain summer at the box office.

“Furiosa” — the prequel to the award-winning “Mad Max: Fury Road” — debuted in more than 3,800 theaters Friday and grossed $25.5 million in its first three days. It is on track for a $31 million 4-day opening, Deadline noted.

The debut numbers are the lowest for a Memorial Day weekend in nearly three decades, when “Casper” opened in 1995 with $22 million, though this number is not adjusted for inflation, per multiple media reports.

The “Furiosa” figures are also nearly 10 million less than its projected $40 million 4-day start and “Mad Max: Fury Road’s” $45.4 million 3-day opening in 2015.

Directed by George Miller, “Furiosa” tells the story of “renegade warrior” Furiosa ahead of her encounter with Mad Max, per IMBD.

It comes weeks after the underperformance of Universal’s “The Fall Guy,” which debuted earlier this month at a disappointing $27.7 million in its first weekend, falling short of the expected $40 million opening weekend.

“The Fall Guy,” starring Ryan Gosling and Emily Blunt, was expected to be the potential spark for the movie theater business to get people back inside theaters and usher in a profitable summer.

Gosling and Blunt were at the center of last summer’s “Barbenheimer” frenzy, which brought in hundreds of millions for Hollywood with the release of Warner Bros’s “Barbie” and Universal’s “Oppenheimer.”

The two films raked in a combined $235 million during their opening weekend and more than $2 billion in worldwide sales last summer.

The global box office experienced a more than 30 percent gain in 2023 from the year prior, though that number still falls double digits behind the attendance numbers of the last three years before the pandemic, Deadline reported.

The movie theater industry also faces competition from streaming services, while tech companies with large balance sheets are increasingly wielding influence in the field, according to experts.

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