After 36 years of waiting, the sequel to Tom Cruise Top Gun: Maverick eventually decreased to a massive one $19.3M in previews starting Thursday evening at 3:00 p.m. and a one-off fan event on Tuesday at 7:00 p.m.
This is the highest-grossing preview in Paramount Pictures history and the highest-grossing Memorial Day preview in history; and of course best for Cruise. Early forecasts for the weekend were $80-$100 million over four days and a high-octane start like this could easily push ahead Top Gun: Maverick for the best Memorial Day opening weekend ever, beating the $139.8 million 4-day opening of 2007 Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End.
Without question Top Gun: Maverick also seems to be the best start in Tom Cruise’s career and easily leaves his 3-day career from 2005 behind war of the Worlds that was $64.8 million.
Everything works in there Top gun 2‘s Favor: It’s the widest release ever with 4,735 theaters; has 5 out of 5 stars on ComScore/Screen Engine’s PostTrak with 96% positive and a whopping 84% clear recommendations. PLFs (31%) and Imax (21%) together accounted for 52% of preview ticket sales. Imax alone racked up $4.1 million in previews, the best ever for the exhibitor with a Paramount title, a Tom Cruise film and a top ten Imax score of all time.
Also juicing dollars for Top gun 2 is a 97% Certified Fresh Score on Rotten Tomatoes after a month of lively world premieres and a recent audience score on RT of a staggering 99%.
The previous major preview for Paramount was in 2009 Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen with $16 million, which took place on a Tuesday and resulted in a Wednesday of $62 million (previews accounted for 25% of that number). The best Thursday previews for a Memorial Day weekend movie premiere actually belong to Disney’s Star Wars: A Solo Story which posted $14.1 million but only made up 40% of its first Friday’s $35.3 million. Panned by fans, this film still resulted in a $103 million 4-day holiday opening.
On Thursdays, previews for the Paramount/Skydance feature began at 3:00 p.m. In addition, there was also a “Top Gun” Tuesday with premium large format, Imax and Dolby screens opening their curtains at 7pm for just one show. We heard the bulk of the preview money for the sequel was made yesterday.
Top Gun: Maverick blows away Cruise’s previous preview record on Thursday, that of 2018 Mission: Impossible – Fallout which grossed $6 million.
Top Gun: Maverick means a little extra to the exhibition and studios as a whole: apart from the presence of older people, which Cruise always attracts (Stand out attracted 41% males over 25), the hope is that this sequel will have a wide following, from under 25s to the female Cruise fans who hung his posters in their bedrooms and lockers in the 1980s. Last night the unweighted turnout was 57% male and 43% female. Stand out‘s Thursday Night made up 26% of its first day on Friday at $22.8 million before earning $61.2 million.
20th Century Studios/Disney’s The Bob’s Burgers Movie seen $1.5 million in previews of shows that started at 5 p.m. The image is 86% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes with a current viewer rating of 96%. A $10-$14 million four-day launch is expected at 3,425 locations across the US/Canada. Among other previews, singing 2 made $1.6 million from his early shows on Tuesday, Encanto made $1.5 million during Tuesday’s previews The Bad Boys made $1.2 million on Thursday night ahead of its Friday opening.
Among the regular movies yesterday, Disney/Marvel’s Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness earned $2.4 million from 4,534 theaters, down14% from Wednesday for a three-week rolling total of $354.4 million.
focus functions Downton Abbey: A New Era was second with $1.3M, down 11% from Wednesday for a first week gain of $22.6M across 3,820 locations.
Universal/DreamWorks Animations The Bad Boys came third yesterday with $576,000, up 1%, from 3,705 venues and a five-week running total of $76.7M.
A24 Everything everywhere at once booked at 1,576, posted a ninth Thursday at $426,000, -16% and a running cume of $54.3m.
Outstanding Sonic the Hedgehog 2 raised around $330,000, -4%, at 2,943 for a seven-week total of $182.6 million.