Following its international release, the Warcraft movie opened in the US last night. The box office numbers are now in, and the video game movie landed in the No. 2 spot for Friday evening. In pulled in $10.7 million that day, a figure that includes $3.1 million in previews.
These numbers were posted on Deadline. According to the site, the film is expected to bank $25.7 million this weekend, making it the No. 2 new release, behind The Conjuring 2 and ahead of Now You See Me 2.
Deadline said Warcraft‘s opening weekend projections, which are in line with estimates, are “awful” for a film that had a budget of $160 million. However, the film is performing better in international markets, including China, where it’s made $145 million since its opening on Wednesday, June 8, pacing ahead of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
The site’s sources says Warcraft could make as much as $250 million in China alone. The movie opened last in the US because “too often if a film bombs here [in the US], it can poison its tills abroad,” Deadline said. According to the report, the movie needs to make $500 million worldwide to break even. Director Duncan Jones has said he has plans for a further two movies, but that may only happen if the first one comes out ahead.
As for why Warcraft isn’t such a hit in the US, Deadline points out that, when Legendary acquired the Warcraft rights a decade ago, the brand was more popular. Indeed, World of Warcraft subscribers have fallen of lately; dropping to a nine-year low by Blizzard’s latest count.
According to the report, Blizzard at one time wanted the Warcraft movie to come out in 2009. However, after Spider-Man director Sam Raimi dropped out, the project stalled. Be sure to read the full Deadline report for further box office analysis and more.
Jones himself also has a message to fans now that Warcraft has opened. He says on Twitter that it’s OK if you don’t like the film, “but please chill out. It’s just a movie.” Blizzard founder and CEO Mike Morhaime replied to the tweet, saying, “Couldn’t have said it better!”
For more on Warcraft, check out GameSpot’s review.