Superman finally swooped into theaters yesterday, but the most anticipated movie of the year had a so-so first day at the box office.
SUPERMAN RETURNS, which was originally scheduled to hit theaters this Friday, earned $21 million in its first day of release — that’s only the eighth best Wednesday opening of all time. SPIDER-MAN 2 has the best Wednesday opening with $40.4 million, followed by The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2), Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace (3), The Passion of the Christ (4), The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (5), The Matrix Revolutions (6), and War of the Worlds (7).
Paul Dergarabedian, president of box-office tracker Exhibitor Relations, tells the Associated Press that producers of SUPERMAN RETURNS aren’t looking for a quick buck. “If you’re trying to break opening-weekend records, then generally you open on Friday, but what they’re going for is the long run. I think in the end the worldwide take on this movie is going to be just tremendous, because it is just that good of a film.”
SUPERMAN RETURNS, which has been earning positive reviews, reportedly cost $260 million to produce.