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‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ Hits $70 Million in Pandemic-Era Box Office Milestone

GODZILLA Godzilla vs Kong
©Warner Bros/Courtesy Everett C

“Godzilla vs Kong” had a better-than-expected turnout over the weekend, boosting ticket sales to $13.8 million in its second outing in theaters.

Those receipts, coming in slightly above the $13.5 million the studio initially reported on Sunday, propel the film’s overall tally to $70 million. After two weeks of release, “Godzilla vs. Kong” already ranks as the highest-grossing movie of the pandemic era, surpassing Christoper Nolan’s puzzling sci-fi thriller “Tenet,” which ended its theatrical run with $58.4 million. Both titles were released by Warner Bros.

The commercial prospects for “Godzilla vs. Kong” are especially notable because it is available on HBO Max, the streaming service owned by WarnerMedia. At the same time, movie theaters have been operating at limited capacity to comply with COVID-19 safety measures, capping ticket sales.

Globally, “Godzilla vs. Kong” has crossed $350 million at the box office, which puts the film in a prime position to turn a profit. The tentpole film, a CGI-fest that pits two of cinema’s most notorious monsters against each other, cost roughly $165 million to produce. Legendary Pictures co-financed the film and is handling distribution in China, where the movie has made a massive $165.4 million.

Without notable competition on the horizon, “Godzilla vs. Kong” looks to enjoy a lucrative run in theaters. The next major movie to debut theatrically is “Mortal Kombat,” an adaptation of the popular video game, on April 23.

While it may be promising for Warner Bros., it’s less encouraging for movie theater owners, who have to keep the lights on in cinemas without a steady stream of new content. Though several high-profile titles are slated for summer, including “A Quiet Place Part II” and “F9,” studios have already started to bump release dates for blockbuster-hopefuls like “Top Gun: Maverick,” which fled from July to late November. That could put a speed bump in Hollywood’s grand plans to revive the movie theater business.