The monster titans may be the marquee battle, but it’s the pandemic that’s getting obliterated.
In just 12 days of release, Godzilla vs Kong has become the biggest domestic hit of the pandemic. Its total of $69.5 million in less than two weeks leaps past previous pandemic top earner Tenet, which tapped out at $58.4 million after its entire theatrical run. Even GvK‘s second weekend take of $13.4 million was better than all but four pandemic debuts.
The global haul is just as impressive, having amassed $357.8 million in less than three weeks. That’s not even shabby for non-pandemic times, especially for a franchise that had previously produced middling returns with its first three entries.
Granted, Godzilla vs Kong has a lot going for it that movies like Tenet and Wonder Woman 1984 did not. Those other two films, released in August and December (respectively), opened with under 40% of theaters open nationwide, and none in either New York or L.A. Now, over 90% of U.S. theaters are in operation including the nation’s two biggest markets.
Even so, viewers still have the at-home option of HBO Max for viewing the Monsterverse smash. Plus, for theaters that are open, they are still operating with limited seating capacity, most at under 50%. By those accounts and based on previous pandemic trends, no movie should be performing this well.
The continued success of the nation’s vaccine rollout is no doubt fueling this welcome boost for the ailing theater industry, one that hopes the Godzilla vs Kong windfall is just a precursor of even better things to come for the summer box office season.