After a year of delays due to the epidemic, Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of the Broadway classic and 10x Oscar-winning 1961 film, West Side Story, opens this weekend in 2,800 theatres across the United States and Canada, as well as in France, Germany, Brazil, Mexico, Russia, and the United Kingdom. Overall, the global prognosis is $22M-$31M, with domestic revenue of $12M-$17M and international revenue of $10M-$14M. Disney is releasing the 20th Century Studios-Amblin production.
While MGM/House UAR’s of Gucci provided a light of hope for older films during the epidemic, with $14.4 million over three days and $22 million over five, the surge had a lot to do with moviegoers’ availability over the Thanksgiving weekend. Any film releasing in this pre-Christmas window, even if it’s pre-pandemic, is usually thinking about the long haul through the holidays and MLK weekend. Given the holidays, there are always too many distractions, but one of West Side Story’s challenges, which it hopes to solve in the long run, is the cautious adult audience, particularly at a time when the Omicron variation is making headlines. Dr. Anthony Fauci, on the other hand, stated Wednesday that the new strain is less severe than Delta.
In the case of West Side Story’s appeal, comparisons to In the Heights are inevitable, as both musicals include a Puerto Rican New Yorker plot. In the Heights, on the other hand, premiered to $11.5 million, falling short of expectations of $20 million, and concluded its run slightly under $30 million in the United States, thanks to its 31-day HBO Max availability at the same time as its theatrical release. Also, unlike Lin Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton, that Tony-winning musical did not have the same level of brand recognition. West Side Story is built on a legacy piece of IP that has been re-framed for a new generation, and it bears the Spielberg name.
War Horse (91 percent), Lincoln (88 percent after broad break), Bridge of Spies (79 percent), and The Post (79 percent) are examples of Spielberg’s non-event, award-contending films that are often sleepers at the box office, making the majority of their domestic box office after opening weekend (76 percent ). As a result, expect West Side Story to benefit from the year-end holidays in the long run.
West Side Story is now performing well with older audiences, particularly musical theatre fans. Latina women made the most progress in the most recent round of tracking, and they dominated the “definite interest” criteria.
Also in West Side Story’s favour, critics enjoy it with a 95% fresh rating, and the film has already made a reputation for itself during awards season, being chosen one of the top ten films by NBR and Rachel Zegler (who plays Maria) being awarded Best Actress by the organisation. Janusz Kaminski, Spielberg’s longtime cinematographer, was selected Best Cinematographer by the New York Film Critics Circle.
The remake of the Jerome Robbins-Robert Wise directed film will begin previews on Thursday at 5 p.m., with 320 Imax screens and 740 premium large format screens adding to the excitement.
West Side Story’s international footprint accounts for 46% of the global market. Today is France’s opening day, and the country, along with the United Kingdom, is predicted to be the most popular bets this session.