Following on from last year’s commercially underwhelming Justice League, the pressure is on Aquaman to put the DCEU back on track at the box office, and if you want a better idea of the sort of financial stakes we’re dealing with here, THR has reported that Arthur Curry’s standalone debut has cost the studio $200 million.
It sounds like a big number, and by the standards of solo superhero movies, it kind of is. To put this amount into perspective, while Justice League had a budget of $300 million, Wonder Woman’s figure reportedly sits in the $120–150 million range. Meanwhile, over in the MCU, Black Panther was financed for somewhere around $200–210 million, while Ant-Man and the Wasp is said to have a relatively modest figure in the range of $162–195 million. Venom, on the other hand, became a box office success off the back of a budget of just $100–116 million.
Evidently, Warner Bros. has high hopes for Aquaman, and based on the latest commercial projections, James Wan’s flick may’ve been a wise investment after all. First off, the film is said to be tracking for a $60 million opening in China this week, before opening to an estimated $65 million in North America later this month. Better yet, if the recent social media buzz is anything to go by, then the movie’s performance could be helped by strong word of mouth, with some early viewers going as far as to praise the feature as the DCEU’s best offering to date.