Only a week or so ago the news was all about the devouring of the box office by the world's most famous giant lizard. But a week is a long time in the world of the global box office, and now the new X-Men film Days of Future Past (reviewed here), the seventh in the still-unrebooted franchise, has toppled Warner's Godzilla movie at the box office (see my review here).
The Hollywood Reporter and others have the latest figures: The superhero film, directed by X-Men 1 and X-Men 2 director Bryan Singer, won the best worldwide opening of any "X-Men" film on its US Memorial Day weekend run, taking a four-day debut of $111 million from 3,996 theaters. Internationally it took in $191 million through Monday, putting its global total at a $302 million -- the best debut of any X-Men film. Given it cost around $200m to produce and market, it probably has already returned its money to parent studio Twentieth Century Fox.
In North America, Days of Future Past scored the fifth-best Memorial Day opening ever after Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End ($139.8 million), Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull ($126.9 million), X-Men: The Last Stand ($122.9 million) and last year's Fast & Furious 6 ($117 million).
While on the subject of comic book movies, Captain America: The Winter Soldier is on course to become 2014's biggest US box office film according to Box Office Mojo. It also holds that number one spot in terms of international grosses so far.
The Hollywood Reporter also had the top 10 estimates for Memorial Day weekend at the domestic box office (four-day), showing how other films suffered in the shadow of the X-Men franchise's still-strong box office pull despite being over 14 years old:
Title, Weeks in Release/Theater Count, Studio, Weekend Total, Cume
1. X-Men: Days of Future Past, 1/3,996, 20th Century Fox, $111 million.
2. Godzilla, 2/3,952, Warner Bros./Legendary, $39.4 million, $156.8 million.
3. Blended, 1/3,555, Warner Bros., $18.2 million.
4. Neighbors, 3/3,311, Universal, $17.2 million, $116.9 million.
5. The Amazing Spider-Man 2, 4/3,160, Sony, $10 million, $187.1 million.
6. Million Dollar Arm, 2/2,154, Disney, $8.7 million, $22.2 million.
7. The Other Woman, 5/2,154, Fox, $4.5 million, $78.6 million.
8. Rio 2, 7/1,701, Fox/Blue Sky, $3.5 million, $122.3 million.
9. Chef, 3/498, Open Road Films, $2.9 million, $4.2 million.
10. Heaven Is for Real, 6/1,720, Sony/TriStar, $2.8 million, $86.6 million.