‘Logan’ Outperforms Initial Box Office Report; Sets March R-Rated Opening Record

     March 6, 2017

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This weekend, we thought that Logan had pulled in $85.3 million domestically, but it turns out those estimates were a bit shy of the final number. Logan, a dour, R-rated superhero film that prefers Western tropes to comic book ones, nabbed $88.3 million at the box office in the U.S. That number blows the opening weekend for the PG-13 X-Men: Apocalypse, $65.8 million, out of the water.

Logan is also doing extremely well in international markets. According to THR, the movie opened to “an estimated $152.5 million from 81 markets for a global launch of $240.8 million.” It also had plenty of fans in China, where it made $46.2 million, easily dominating the superhero competition, The LEGO Batman Movie, which only made $3.6 million.

However, it’s tough to say if there will be a “Logan Effect” in the same way there was a “Deadpool Effect.” Between the two movies, its clear that the marketplace is ready for R-rated superhero movies when they’re done well and effectively marketed. However, whereas Deadpool could create more R-rated action movies in the superhero genre and also elevate more obscure characters into their own movies, Logan is a different beast. Part of the film’s success comes from being not only an ending, but also an ending to a story that began 17 years ago. It’s a unique picture, and I’m not exactly sure how studios can recreate its success.

In an ideal world, studios would see that audiences are happy to see a cool spin on the Western genre, but that’s unlikely to happen. While I wouldn’t go so far as to call Logan a fluke—the movie was tracking well and had positive buzz—I do think it will be unique, especially when studios are so intent on building long-term franchises. That being said, based on the film’s success, I assume Fox will want director James Mangold hard at work on an X-23 movie ASAP.

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