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Business News/ Industry / Media/  ‘Godzilla x Kong’ Tops Expectations With $80 Million Opening Weekend
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‘Godzilla x Kong’ Tops Expectations With $80 Million Opening Weekend

wsj

The monster adventure’s debut ranks as the year’s second-biggest opening weekend at the box office.

‘Godzilla x Kong,’ from Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros., is the fifth installment in the MonsterVerse franchise. Source: Twitter @taran_adarshPremium
‘Godzilla x Kong,’ from Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros., is the fifth installment in the MonsterVerse franchise. Source: Twitter @taran_adarsh

“Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire" roared at the box office this weekend, surpassing expectations with an estimated $80 million in domestic ticket sales.

The debut of the monster adventure had been expected to bring in between $50 million and $55 million over the weekend, according to box-office tracker Comscore. The preliminary figures are for sales at theaters in the U.S. and Canada. It marked the second-biggest domestic weekend opening of a movie so far this year, behind the science-fiction epic “Dune: Part Two."

“Godzilla x Kong," from Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros., is the fifth installment in the MonsterVerse franchise. The film brings together Godzilla and Kong to confront a new threat to the world.

“For audiences, it was an essential part of the experience to see these characters on the big screen, or the biggest screen possible," said Paul Dergarabedian, Comscore’s senior media analyst. “You don’t want to confine Godzilla and Kong to a small screen."

Comscore said the domestic weekend box office overall grossed an estimated $136 million domestically. Ticket sales are lagging behind last year’s by about 6% at $1.65 billion. “Godzilla x Kong" provided a boost for the year. Going into the weekend, ticket sales were trailing by 12% from 2023.

The weekend marked another success this year for Legendary, which also produced “Dune: Part Two." The sequel based on Frank Herbert’s science-fiction novel is the highest-grossing movie so far this year, at roughly $252 million in sales at domestic theaters.

“You hear the rumbling from inside the theaters, whether it’s the sand worms blowing through the sand dunes or it’s Godzilla or Kong fighting something or smashing rocks, you feel that energy when you’re in the movie theater, and you realize it’s fun to have that shared experience," said Josh Grode, Legendary Entertainment chief executive.

Worldwide, “Godzilla x Kong" grossed an estimated $194 million for its debut weekend.

Write to Katherine Sayre at katherine.sayre@wsj.com

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