Despite naysayers who predicted that audiences wouldn’t come out for a franchise’s second reboot within five years, Spider-Man: Homecoming was this weekend’s box office champ. The film surpassed expectations with its estimated $117 million in ticket sales at the domestic box office.
This weekend’s domestic gross positions Homecoming as the second highest opening weekend for the franchise, right behind Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 3‘s $151.1 million debut and ahead of the 2002 franchise launching Spider-Man‘s first weekend take of $114.8 million.
The weekend receipts show that the Sony and Marvel partnership to bring the Sony-owned Spider-Man into Marvel’s interconnected superhero franchise, was a smart one. Not only have critics made it one of the best reviewed major releases of the summer, but its strong opening puts just behind Marvel’s Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2 which pulled $146.5 million in domestic ticket sales.
Previously, Sony had met with lower box office and critical review with their first reboot of the franchise in 2012 with the Andrew Garfield led The Amazing Spider-Man.
Homecoming‘s success is the latest installment in a summer box office season that has seen some wildly swinging ups and downs. The biggest hits so far of the season have been superhero films – with Marvel’s Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2 and Warner Brothers’s Wonder Woman both debuting to strong receipts, while other films thought to be sure fire winners like the latest Transformers and Pirates Of The Caribbean films underperforming. Some have written these films’ poor starts as “franchise fatigue,” claiming that audiences were tired of the numerous film series that often seemed like set-ups for the next film in the franchise.
The fact that Spider-Man: Homecoming is the 16th entry in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe of connected superhero franchises kind of puts that theory to bed. With its and Wonder Woman‘s and Guardians‘ strong reviews, it seems more that it is a case of audiences being less than eager to spend money at their local theater on films that are not good rather than if they are part of an ongoing series or not.