The pandemic has raised so many questions about the long-term and short-term future of movie theaters. Will people go see movies in the theaters after they reopen? Will people prefer streaming all of their entertainment? What kinds of movies will people want to go to the movie theater for? During Memorial Day weekend, Paramount released the long-awaited horror movie starring Emily Blunt, A Quiet Place 2. As presale tickets picked up at an unexpected pace, you could feel the box office holding its breath. Still, all were surprised when the sequel brought in a shocking $57 million during the opening weekend. This was nearly the number that experts had projected for the movie’s release before the pandemic. It broke pandemic records. And now? The movie is breaking them again.
After 15 days in movie theaters, A Quiet Place Part 2 has surpassed the $100 million domestic box office sales mark. It’s currently at $108 million domestic and an additional $80 million in international box office sales. Even with much longer in the movie theater, Godzilla Vs. Kong is still just shy of that $100 million mark. The Godzilla film was one of the first movies to start give hope that the industry would regain its footing eventually. That A Quiet Place 2 is doing this well, with comparisons to its pre-pandemic estimates and the numbers we saw for the original film, is giving a lot of life to movie theaters right now.
Pandemic lockdowns have made judging a movie’s success at the box office a difficult undertaking. For example, it’s impossible to judge how well Wonder Woman 1984 did against its predecessor since WW1984 released simultaneously on HBO Max and in movie theaters during the middle of pandemic lockdowns. A sign of things changing is in how it now feels more valid to compare A Quiet Place 2 box office numbers with the original film’s, which eventually reached $341 million total at the worldwide box office. We have a while to go before Quiet Place 2 finishes its run in the theaters, but it may very well rival the first movie’s number. While the effects of the pandemic on the movie theater industry is still an important consideration when judging how this movie is going, we’re looking at the kinds of numbers we would see pre-pandemic, and that’s a huge milestone.
It’s impossible to say how A Quiet Place 2 would have done before the pandemic at the box office, but it’s an interesting question. The timing of this movie’s release has raised all kinds of points. Are there pandemic factors that are actually making this movie perform better than it would have before the pandemic? For example, is the movie doing so well because the competition in the theaters isn’t as touch right now? A lot of the blockbusters like No Time to Die or Dune are still holding off for later this year.
Is Quiet Place 2 doing better because it’s a sequel, long-awaited, and because people want to go out and to the theater, but only to a sequel they trust to be in line with their expectations? It may not be worth venturing out to the theater for the first time to see something entirely new, but a sequel is a safer bet to be worth the effort to leave the house to see a movie.
Whatever the reasons for A Quiet Place 2‘s success at the box office, it is definitely being taken as a sign that there is still hope for movies to perform well in movie theaters. How that will affect the studio’s decisions about releasing films for streaming remains to be seen.