Rogue One Made a Mint

Rogue One has been a big hit at the box office. It is on its way to be one of the top 10 highest grossing films of all time.

Here’s the Rogue One Domestic box office tally thus far compared with the release of The Force Awakens.

 

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The rest of the world take (at the time of this writing) brings the total north of $1 Billion. It will probably end short of $1.1 Billion (but perhaps not too short of it; it just doesn’t have 10 more weeks earning $10 Million/each).   The opening weekend was $155MM.

But I guessed wrong on my box office prognostication.

I guessed $215 MM +/- $5MM for opening weekend and $2 Billion for total world wide.  This was done in the face of some other guesses that were much closer to accurate.  That’s fine – sometimes it’s more fun to be aspirational.

But my guess was based on a few pre-requisites:

  1. Rogue One is well regarded in quality and is better than other recently released films targeting similar demographics (BatmanVSuperman; Suicide Squad).
  2. International markets where The Force Awakens didn’t do well really take to Rogue One.

To the first point, Rogue One is generally very well liked, but how much is a spread from person to person.  For me, it’s perhaps the best story telling outside of Empire.  Some complained of the lack of character development (which I think is a bit strange given how loved Han Solo is and his character wasn’t any better developed than, say, Cassian’s).  I take all that to mean that many didn’t like the characters.  Many really liked them and cried a lot during the film. Many liked it more than The Force Awakens. Many didn’t. Many didn’t like that this film didn’t have any Skywalkers or Han Solos and called it a side story with bit-part characters.  Many liked TFA’s characters better.  So Rogue One was a great film.

That Rogue One didn’t do better than BatmanVSuperman opening weekend seems crazy to me.

Copyright Lucasfilm

The Empire Strikes Back wasn’t well regarded when it first came out in theaters.  But over time, it has become regarded as the best Star Wars film.  In the long run, I believe Rogue One will develop a similar level of appreciation (that says something – people really like it already).  It’s an incredibly rich and detailed film in both characters, plot, locations, and importance to the overall Star Wars Saga.  It develops the lore of the Jedi.  It characterizes the Empire’s impact on the galaxy. It’s also funny and action-packed.  We even get an amazing Darth Vader scene. It pretty  much has everything you want in a Star Wars film.

To the second point, International markets haven’t been incredibly big on Rogue One.  It’s received a good response in China, though less so than those of Marvel films.  Overall, Rogue One has performed internationally about as well as it has in the U.S. I’m personally a bit disappointed by it.  I thought it was certainly a better story The Force Awakens  (though not in its characters).

So my pre-requisites were wrong.  But I don’t feel bad about it.

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I can’t be too disappointed though.  It’s on its way to becoming one of the highest grossing films of all time.  It’s already #27 (as of this writing) and will probably end up in the Top 20 (almost certainly top 25) worldwide. It’s currently #7 in domestic box office and could get to #6 with just a few more strong weeks.  That’s obviously a rousing success.

 

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