It might have scored top of the North American box office, but "Justice League" didn't have the super opening weekend predicted, falling short of expectations with takings of $96 million, according to industry estimates released Sunday.
That title might be the understatement of the century as a movie that was thought to open with more than $100 million with relative ease probably won't achieve that amount, at least opening weekend.
Justice League now sits at eighth on the list of domestic opening weekends for 2017, wedged between The Fate of the Furious and Logan, the latter of which has been nudged down to ninth spot. $38.8 million (including that $13 million) and that's less than half BvS's opening day. Warner Bros. launched their unofficially titled DC Extended Universe with Zack Snyder's Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice in 2016 - a follow-up to his Superman origin story, Man of Steel - and the studio continued expanding the newly-formed shared universe with the filmmaker's Justice League, which finally hit theaters worldwide this weekend.
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So what went wrong?
Critically, it's received mostly poor reviews, with a 39 rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a 46 rating on Metacritic. This was a movie about a character that no one really knew outside of comic fans and superhero movies were nowhere as big as they are now unless they were Spider-Man, X-Men, Batman, or Superman.
By comparison, the film appeared to win over more of the movie going public. Audiences have been kinder on Cinemascore, giving it a "B" rating, but they're still not coming out in the droves that Warner Bros. hoped for. (This seems like a good moment to imagine Elfman's Tim Burton Batman score popping up in The Dark Knight.) Elfman, who took the music reins from Junkie XL when he exited Justice League, thinks it's a waste for superhero movies to ignore the score that came before. The film also grossed $6.5 million in Russian Federation (70 percent above Wonder Woman), $6 million in France (23 percent ahead of Wonder Woman), $3.4 million in Italy, $3 million in Spain, and $2.9 million in Germany, with $9.6 million in Mexico (29 percent ahead of Ragnarok) and $6.3 million in Australia (21 percent ahead of Wonder Woman, but behind Ragnarok).