We’re approaching the one-year anniversary of the Coronavirus first reducing the theatrical industry to a shell of its former self, but there are reasons to be cautiously optimistic. Despite debuting simultaneously on HBO Max, Tom & Jerry managed to score the second biggest opening weekend of the COVID-19 era after launching to over $14 million when it was released last Friday, even though it was widely panned by critics.
While that’s hardly earth-shattering, it’s definitely a good sign, and the number of major titles being delayed even further has also significantly slowed down. A defining moment is almost upon us, too, and it comes in the form of Godzilla vs. Kong. The MonsterVerse epic has been riding a wave of buzz and momentum, and at this point it looks guaranteed to score the biggest box office haul for any Hollywood production since Christopher Nolan’s Tenet reached $363 million last summer. Not to mention it should comfortably eclipse Wonder Woman 1984‘s $161 million.
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Indeed, the showdown between the two iconic kaiju has now been voted as the most anticipated movie coming to cinemas or VOD this month in a new poll, with Zack Snyder’s Justice League surprisingly only managing to secure sixth position. In between those two HBO Max exclusives are The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run, which hit Netflix internationally months ago, Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley’s troubled Chaos Walking, Disney’s upcoming hybrid release Raya and the Last Dragon and Amazon’s Eddie Murphy sequel Coming 2 America.
It’s not a shock to discover audiences are hyped for Godzilla vs. Kong, with the trailer smashing records all over the internet, but the real challenge is drawing people back to their local multiplex in big numbers with the pandemic still very much a threat, especially with the option of watching it safely from home also on the table.