‘Men In Black: International’ Debuts Below Expectation with $26 Million
Variety.com: North American moviegoers spurned sequels this weekend with Sony’s “Men in Black: International” heading for a modest $26 million debut while “Shaft” will finish with a dismal $7.3 million in seventh place.
“Men in Black: International,” the fourth iteration of the sci-fi comedy franchise, is performing under expectations, which had been in the $30 million range at 4,224 locations. The three previous “Men In Black” films, starring Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones, all scored North American debut weekends of more than $50 million in 1997, 2002 and 2012.
“Men in Black: International” stars Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson as the black-suited agents dealing with a baffling series of alien attacks against Earth. Reviewers have been unimpressed, giving the film a 25% score on Rotten Tomatoes.
Should the Saturday morning estimates hold, “Men in Black: International” will have the lowest gross of a first-place title since the second weekend of “Shazam!” led the April 12-14 chart with $24.5 million. “Men in Black: International,” which is also opening in most foreign markets, carries a $110 million price tag, co-financed by Hemisphere and Tencent.
“Men in Black: International” takes place in the same universe as the previous trilogy, with Emma Thompson reprising her role as Agent O. Kumail Nanjiani, Rebecca Ferguson, Rafe Spall and twins Laurent and Larry Bourgeois also star. The film, set in the London bureau of the top-secret Men in Black organization, is directed by F. Gary Gray.