This summer has seen pretty dismal profits for Hollywood’s massive slate of sequels. But it looks like Disney-Pixar’s upcoming could turn the tides and swim its way to box office success.
As The Wrap reported, Finding Dory is projected to make $125 million on its opening weekend, making it one of the few sequels this summer to surpass its predecessor.
Finding Nemo made $70.3 million on its opening weekend back in 2003, which the sequel should easily beat, even if it doesn’t reach the lofty $125 million opening. So far, 2016 has seen 16 widely released sequels with all but and failing to beat their most recent predecessors at the box office. The only other film to buck the trend this summer has been , which made the same amount as the first film during its opening last weekend.
Finding Dory would be Disney’s second sequel win of the summer following Civil War, though it’s also been hit pretty hard by the sequel slump. Alice Through the Looking Glass was a certified bomb during its Memorial Day weekend release, making $26.1 million over the holiday compared to the first film’s $116.1 million opening weekend six years ago.
Why Are Sequels Failing?
Hollywood execs have had trouble determining why so many sequels have failed this summer. As one anonymous executive told The Wrap:
“We really don’t know what’s going on. It’s been happening all for individual reasons. Is the audience saying, ‘I don’t want to see a sequel’? I don’t think so.”
Another anonymous executive said:
“It’s not about slapping a name on a film. It has to be good.”
The success of Civil War and BvS shows that audiences aren’t biased against sequels. But underperformers like X-Men: Apocalypse, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows, and Now You See Me 2 show that audiences aren’t going to flock to a film just because it’s familiar. While there’s no way to guarantee a film’s success, studios would be smart to focus their efforts on making entertaining, engaging films instead of just perpetuating franchises. After all, if a movie’s legitimately good, then audiences will probably want to see it.
Finding Dory hits theaters on June 17. Do you plan on seeing the Disney-Pixar adventure? Why do you think so many sequels have failed this summer? Let us know in the comments.