As the most popular, well-known, and bankable brand in modern cinema, it isn’t a coincidence that five of the nine highest-grossing Hollywood blockbusters to release last year came bearing the Marvel logo, which could be the one thing that saves Morbius from disaster.
Spider-Man: No Way Home, Venom: Let There Be Carnage, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Eternals, and Black Widow came bearing a combination of either built-in name value, strong reviews, or fan anticipation, and sometimes all three. However, Jared Leto’s Living Vampire arguably doesn’t have any of that to lean on.
It might sound unfair, but a lot of insiders and audiences are expecting Morbius to be terrible, matters that haven’t been helped by the negative early reactions, or the fact director Daniel Espinosa has been revealing spoilers without a care in the world, which could theoretically discourage from people from seeing the film if they know every surprise ahead of time.
And yet, the latest projections continue to have Morbius in line for a strong opening weekend, with the current estimates pointing towards a first frame in the $40-50 million range. Sure, that would be the lowest total for any live-action project tangentially connected to Spider-Man, but it’s nonetheless a lot more robust than many would be expecting to hear.
Of course, we won’t know for sure whether Morbius is destined to sink or swim for another week, but there may yet be hope for the title hero’s long-term future as a key cog in the Sony machine.