After 32 weeks, 2022 year-to-date results stand at 69% compared with the same period in 2019. The first six weeks of Q3 generated 158% of the amount earned during the same weeks in 2021, 10 percentage points lower than where this comparison stood as of last week. This year’s third-quarter results compared to last year will continue to drift down, as the weak end-of-summer slate takes its toll.
In fact, this year’s Labor Day weekend looks particularly grim in comparison to last year, when Disney placed a huge bet by releasing SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS, which earned a rewarding 3-day gross of $75M and first week gross of $109M. It went on to a very appetizing $225M box office for its total run in North American theatres. This year holds no such promise, with the only title to open wide over Labor Day being HONK FOR JESUS, SAVE YOUR SOUL. Underlined by Regal’s expected announcement on Monday that it will file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, it’s clear that the exhibition still has a long way to go to regain its healthy pre-pandemic form.