Box office report: 'X-Men: First Class' scores decent debut with $56 mil


Image Credit: Murray Close

X-Men: First Class rebooted the mutant-superhero franchise by opening to $56 million, according to studio estimates. Whether that figure is a success or not depends on your point of view. Compared to the prior four X-Men movies, First Class attracted by far the least amount of moviegoers on opening weekend. It barely beat the original X-Men, which debuted to $54.5 million in 2000 (or $79.4 million in today’s dollars). And First Class fell far short of X2: X-Men United, X-Men: The Last Stand, and X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which grossed $85.6 million, $102.8 million, and $85.1 million their first weekends, respectively. Fox’s PG-13 action film also failed to match the $65.7 million debut set by fellow Marvel superhero Thor last month.

But Fox has been quick to compare First Class‘ numbers to those of Batman Begins, another superhero franchise reboot and origin story helmed by a rising director. (When Christopher Nolan made Batman Begins, he was best known for the indie breakout Memento and the thriller remake Insomnia; likewise, First Class director Matthew Vaughn has made his mark with Layer Cake and Kick-Ass) In 2005, Batman Begins started out with an okay $48.7 million opening weekend, wound up collecting $205.3 million, and set the stage for The Dark Knight‘s gangbusters performance. First Class earned solid reviews and is sporting a “B+” grade from CinemaScore audiences, so Fox is hoping the $160 million picture holds up well these next few weeks and paves the way for a more lucrative sequel.

The rest of the top five consisted of holdovers. The Hangover Part II fell 62 percent for $32.4 million, bringing the R-rated comedy sequel’s two-week total to $186.9 million. Kung Fu Panda 2 dropped 49 percent — a larger-than-normal decline for a family film — for $24.3 million, while Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides plunged 55 percent for $18 million. Bridesmaids, in fifth place, was the only wide release that displayed some sturdy box-office legs. Universal’s R-rated wedding comedy earned $12.1 million — a slip of only 27 percent and the movie’s third straight weekend of dropping less than 30 percent. Bridesmaids also passed the $100 million mark this weekend, finishing the frame with $107.3 million. Another Universal release, Fast Five, became the year’s first film to reach $200 million this weekend. The Hangover Part II and Pirates: On Stranger Tides will join the club by next week.

In limited release, Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris expanded to 147 theaters and grossed $2.9 million, while Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life took in $621,000 at 20 locations. The well-reviewed drama Beginners, starring Christopher Plummer and Ewan McGregor as father and son, debuted to $135,000 at five locations for a strong per-theater average of $27,000. And the coming-of-age dramedy Submarine failed to make much of an impression with $40,800 at four theaters.

Check back next week to discover whether the mysterious monster in Super 8 is in fact Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer.

1. X-Men: First Class — $56.0 mil
2. The Hangover Part II — $32.4 mil
3. Kung Fu Panda 2 — $24.3 mil
4. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides — $18.0 mil
5. Bridesmaids — $12.1 mil

Comments (125 total) Add your comment
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  • Will

    Kung Fu Panda flopped. This will be lucky to get to 200 million. I remember looking at box office predictions for the summer and KFP2 and POTC4 both seemed locks for 300 million. Uh….

    This summer has left Transformers, Harry Potter, Super 8, and the Green Lantern. Will the latter 2 do much though? This will be a long summer…

    • Will

      And Cars 2.

    • JC

      and Captain America

    • Jose

      And Cowboys & Aliens, which I think is the wild card of the summer, so it’ll be interesting to see how it performs.

    • Garrett

      It…already passed 200 million, it’s only a little over a week old, it’s at 225,000,000 already.

      Going to end up around 500 I imagine, what grass are you smoking?

      • Jeff

        Umm, usually when you talk BO numbers, we are referring to domestic totals. All those figures above are US, not worldwide. Domestically, KFP has definitely underperformed…

    • David

      Who cares how much a film makes? You own stock in movie studios?

      • Wulf

        @David, couldn’t have said it better. By their logic Britney Spears is a better musician than Mozart.

      • Carla Houston


  • Flip

    I’m waiting for X Men to hit the cheap theatres. I don’t like prequels and I’m kind of tired of the X Men. Plus, they aren’t part of the “real” Marvel film universe (i.e., Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, Captain America…).

    • Gus

      Wow, $55 million in 2000 equals to $80 million today?? Holy crap!!! Now that’s the real headline here! Damn you, government!

      • ryan

        uhhhh…need to explain how the gov is responable for tix prices…really?!?

      • MoneyMan

        The government isn’t responsible for the prices, it’s responsible for the value of currency, in this case INFLATION. The US government has printed out so much money that each dollar now is worth less than what it was worth in 2000.

      • hehe

        MonkeyMan, that’s not how inflation works.

      • Gus

        See this is another way the Govt. has failed you- in your education. All I was talking about here is the worth of money- $55mil, just MONEY, not TICKET PRICES, is now worth $80mil.

      • Gus

        By the way, if the others didn’t get it, I was agreeing with MoneyMan.

      • jymmymack

        Gus, they’re talking about in B.O. Revenue dollars, not U.S. inflation. The number of tickets sold in 2000 would equal $80 mil with today’s ticket prices. Get it?

      • jymmymack

        $50 mil in 2000 is worth about $65 in 2010 in terms of INFLATION OF ACTUAL U.S. DOLLARS

      • Monica

        The inflationary aspect surprised me too. jymmmymack – I think that if they wanted to talk about just BO number they would have mention no. of tickets sold. Since they didn’t, I am going with inflation.

    • David

      I was never a fan of the X-Men films but I was surprised this film was great. I liked it much better than the earlier films.

    • sarCC

      I’m one of the few X-Men fans that didn’t like any of the movies(that Nightcrawler opening of X2 was the only great thing to come out of the series). But I really liked First Class. I liked it more than Batman Begins, in fact. It felt like the character-driven X-Men film that I expected Singer to deliver but never did.

      • Shaun

        Nowhere near as good as Batman Begins, but still pretty good and certainly a fun movie. Some big plot holes (such as why doesn’t Emma attempt escape from the feds?), but this turned out much better than I expected.

  • Matt

    Here’s hoping it paves the way for a sequel. It’s a shame that X3 and Wolverine turned people off (as well as the lackluster X-Men: First Class marketing), but it is my favorite superhero movie, ever. The pacing was spectacular, there was never a dull moment that I normally feel during action movies.

  • Jose

    Here’s to hoping that X Men has legs, it deserves them. And I’m shocked at how bad Kung Fu Panda 2 is doing, I guess its too expensive for families to go to the movies. People should watch it though, same for Midnight in Paris which was a pure delight

  • YO


    • Bob

      Yes! Is that right, the movie has a tiny 20 screens in the country? That’s incredible. It should expand!

  • LOL

    America is starting to reject crap just a bit. Nice to see sh*t like Hangover 2 drop like a rock.

    • LOL

      Hopefully Pirates 4 will be dead and buried soon, too. Pure garbage.

      • Just Sayin’

        I have to agree with you here. As much as I like Johnny Depp, the new Pirates movie sucked.

      • Ghost of Pia

        The fake LOL below has become tiresome.

      • LOL

        I am not fake or tiresome.

    • LOL

      Maybe Hollywood will learn that if they produce quality films like Fast Five, people will come in droves. Fast Five is probably the best movie in the last 50 years or so, certainly of this century. Give us more movies like that, and Vin Diesel, then Hollywood will have more money than there is cocaine.

      • Me


      • Woot

        Just stop… please.

      • Chris

        You have a huge hard on for Vin Diesel. Every weekend you go on about how great he is. He’s hot but there are far hotter actors out there you can drool over.

      • MarcHon


      • Rashy

        HAHA LOL and her Diesel need to crash n burn together

      • mn

        “Fast Five is probably the best movie in the last 50 years or so, certainly of this century.”

        I couldn’t stop laughing after reading that comment.

      • LOL

        “Her?” Watch it pal.

        Fast Five was like a masters class in filmmaking, it had action, romance, Vin Diesel’s buttocks, comedy, and pathos. It was just brilliant filmmaking!

      • David

        Vin Diesel resembles a bald ape.

      • James

        Fast Five the best movie of the last 50 years? uhhhhhhhhh….NO.

      • LOL

        I said “probably.” I know it’s arguable, but if it’s not, it’s pretty near the top for that honor. It is most assuredly the best film of the 21st century so far.

  • Jon

    I think X-Men will do well in the long run.

  • ObiHave

    I think people are still smarting over X-3 and Wolverine. Word of mouth should keep it afloat for a while. Best prequel I’ve seen in a long time.

    • Just Sayin’

      Agreed. Say it today and really enjoyed it.

  • Naomi

    Hopefully First class will have strong legs. It was a fantastic movie. I think it’s a good opening though with the comparison to Batman begins explaining why. Crossing my fingers they’ll have a next one. Best movie of the year so far.

  • Mother Nature

    I thought is was terrific, and deserves a bigger audience than Pirates 4, which was really crap (despite being better than its predecessors). Hated X3, but this one deserves sequels.

  • Bob

    “In 2005, Batman Begins started out with an okay $48.7 million opening, wound up collecting $205.3 million, and set the stage for The Dark Knight‘s gangbusters performance.”

    Batman Begins opened on a Wednesday and totaled up $73 million for its 5-day weekend. So you’re not being entirely truthful with that statement by not noting that.

    • MarcHon

      It’s FOX that’s not being truthful, the journalists are just being lazy not doing their fact checking.

    • Ruben

      48.7 Domestic and 73 mil Worldwide.

  • Flip

    They shouldn’t make a follow-up to First Class, they should make X4 set in the present. Let’s follow up on the X-Men NOW.
    That being said, I could get behind a First Class 2 featuring teenaged Jean Grey, Cyclops, and Storm.

    • Tony

      Theres NO way u can do X4 after what they did in X3, That would ve been a the Kiss of Death to the Franchise

      • Jose

        You do realize that X Men 4,5, and 6 are under development right?

    • Brian

      Can’t they do both? First Class sequels AND X4-6, restoring Cyclops, Nightcrawler, Mystique, and Rogue (since the cure doesn’t work).
      First Class redeemed the franchise, now the a-list characters need to be redeemed with the same sense of fun and adventure FC, X1, and X2 had.

    • Khyle

      Under development means jack squat. …that being said, I do agree that they’ll probably make more.

    • raven

      Can they just sort of pretend X3 didn’t happen?? I mean technically it wasn’t called Xmen 3, it was called Xmen The Last Stand. So they could just make a new X-men 3. I mean they’re already rebooting Spiderman, even though it was possibly the biggest movie franchise of the last decade, so why not do that too?

      • Shaun

        Given how First Class contradicts stuff that was seen in both X3 and the (even worse) Wolverine movie, it seems like FOX is pretending those last two didn’t happen. MOST (though not all) of the continuity fits well with X1 and X2, and the two cameos in the FC movie would suggest that this is meant to be a prequel to those.

  • Rath

    A lot of people just aren’t going to theaters this summer. Money is tight all over, netflix is cheap and movie theaters are incredibly overpriced. I think a lot of these movies are going to make their money on home release.

    • Lee Harvey

      All of that is true. Plus, the releases this summer really leave something to be desired. It’s a lousy line-up.

      • David

        I disagree. This is one of the BETTER Summer film lineups.

      • Shaun

        Did someone else help you that theory, Lee Harvey, or are you working alone?

    • Mark

      I would certainly agree, some of my friends still go to theaters but I noticed its far more less than ever before.

      • Marilyn

        All of the entertainment world is getting boring. They don’t want to promote the most talented people. They’re too busy trying to make these non-talented people stars.

  • Tony

    They shouldve never Made Xmen Wolverine, I still think that was just a Lousy Cash-in movie, Thats was turned people off about first Class which Surpirsed the Hell out of me! Good movie

  • Andrew

    I think word of mouth will help “X-Men: First Class.” It was an excellent film and hopefully it will have strong legs.

    • Seema

      I am a huge X-Men fan and this movie did not disappoint. I loved it from beginning til end. James McAvoy who played Xavier was perfect!!! So many questions answered and really set the characters personalities up.

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