Box Office: The Wolverine is #1, but Ghosts of Origins Looms Big in Background


The Wolverine (2013) Movie International PosterHeading into James Mangold’s “The Wolverine”, the big question was, can this latest installment focusing on the popular mutant make people forget the Godawful Gavin Hood movie from four years ago? In terms of quality, yes, I think it’s a no-brainer. “The Wolverine” is miles better than Hood’s “X-Men Origins: Wolverine”. As for box office, though, Hood might have the last laugh, because the $85 million that his “Origins” pulled in is still tops, with Mangold’s follow-up earning $55 million at the domestic box office in its debut. Good for #1, but way short of the opening for Hood’s film.

Fox will take it (#1 is #1, after all), with “The Wolverine” knocking Warner Bros.’ “The Conjuring” down a peg, even though $55 million was, well, probably not what they were hoping for. Hood’s film movie, despite middling reviews, went on to earn $373 million worldwide, with its total almost evenly split between domestic and foreign box office. On the plus side, “The Wolverine” may have only earned $55 million at the domestic box office, but it also pulled in a nice $86 million overseas, giving it $141 million so far in worldwide gross in its first week.

“The Wolverine’s” $55 million has to be doubly disappointing for Fox when you consider that it had almost zero studio competition this weekend, with only the counter-programming teen comedy “The To Do List” giving it any fight whatsoever. The Aubrey Plaza film opened in 15th place with $1.5 million, which is about the same amount it cost to make the film. On the plus side, I didn’t really see a lot of advertising for the film, so although it didn’t blow the doors off the box office, it should do reasonably well when all is said and done. Raunchy comedies tend to do very on DVD afterwards.

But the big story this weekend has to be “The Wolverine’s” inability to overcome “X-Men Origins: Wolverine’s” opening 4 years ago. I’m not sure what that says, really, because “The Wolverine” has way better reviews. On the other hand, maybe “Origins” still leaves such a bad taste in people’s mouths that not many Joe Blow moviegoer were willing to give him another chance.

On the plus side, “The Wolverine” has already made $141 million worldwide, and it arrives on the scene with a $120 million dollar budget. So it doesn’t have that much farther to go to turn a profit.

Hugh Jackman in The Wolverine (2013) Movie Image

“Must … break … the … chains … of … ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’!!!!”

Via : Box Office Mojo

Author: Nix

Editor/Writer at Likes: long walks on the beach and Kevin Costner post-apocalyptic movies. Dislikes: 3D, shaky cam, and shaky cam in 3D. Got a site issue? Wanna submit Movie/TV news? Or to email me in regards to anything on the site, you can do so at nix (at)
  • 0ptik

    to be completely honest, taking away the dreadful deadpool at the end, i enjoyed origins more than the wolverine. there was so many things in the wolverine that were bad in my mind that it overshadowed any good it had.

    I do have to say, the end credit scene for wolverine was amazing.

  • Jabbar Thomas

    One error in the article: Wolverne has a LONG way to go to turn a profit. In the Hollywood film industry, the “break even point” after which the film is considered as “profitable” is 4x the production budget. Why? Films are marketed/promoted by the studio that paid for it. In order to turn a profit, the studio first needs to pay itself back for the expense of publicizing the film. Marketing and promotion varies, but nowadays a film can cost just as much (or more) to promote as it cost to shoot.

    Also, you have to figure in all the executive producers and A-list stars and directors in a film who participate in the profits from a film. They get a cut of the sales after the studio civers its expenses. This cuts greatly into the box office sales. A profit that exceeds 4x the budget of the film normally accounts for the production budget+marketing+profit participation and exceeds the BREAK EVEN POINT, making a film “profitable”.

    • Nix

      That’s ridiculous. In your 4X model, ALMOST EVERY SINGLE FILM would be a financial loss except for the $1 billion hits. It’s a generally accepted rule of thumb that a film needs to double its production budget to break even (with very rare instances, triple it). Otherwise Fox wouldn’t have bothered making a sequel to the first Wolverine movie, since using your 4X model, “Origins” was a major flop, having only earned $373 from a $150 million budget. According to you, it would need to earn $600 million to break even. Or are you trying to convince me that Fox just LOVES Wolverine so much they are willing to make a sequel to a movie that cost them more than $200 million in losses 4 years ago?

      • nardong toothpick

        hahaha! nice one…

  • Lexavi80

    That’s actually true. I almost didn’t go to the theater because I still had XMO:W in my head. Also, The Wolverine’s trailer is NOT that good either.

    Is a better film by all accounts, but I understand people. Hope it goes better though.