Labor Day is here, which means that Summer 2018 has come to an end, and it’s time to look back on the summer box office results. Summer is usually the season when the industry brings out its “tent-poles” – that is, the blockbuster “popcorn flicks” that make the money that allows the studios to pump out lesser-performing movies at other times of the year.
This year’s top ten was dominated by action flicks, with comic book-based movies bringing in most of the money, plus a couple of other action-heavy entries. The rest were rounded out by a couple of kid-friendly animated family comedies, a disappointing entry in the Star Wars franchise, and a sequel to a 10-year-old Broadway musical adaptation.
Here, courtesy of IGN, are the top-ten highest-grossing Summer 2018 movies.
- Avengers: Infinity War$678.7 million
- Incredibles 2$597.7 million
- Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom $413.2 million
- Deadpool 2 $318.4 million
- Solo: A Star Wars Story $213.6 million
- Ant-Man and the Wasp $212 million
- Mission: Impossible – Fallout $196.6 million
- Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation $159.7 million
- Ocean’s 8 $139.1 million
- Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again $116.2 million
To absolutely no one’s surprise, the summer was dominated by another entry in the Marvel franchise. At this point the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) is basically a license to print money, so expect MCU-connected entries to dominate the box office for summers to come.
Parallels between Iron Man and Avengers: Infinity War pic.twitter.com/TsqVjz6lFV— Marvel Facts & News (@MarveIFacts) September 2, 2018
Also not surprising are the solid family-friendly animated entries: The Incredibles 2 and Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation are both based on solid, bankable franchises.
Continuing the theme of the lack of surprises in the list, it’s also hardly surprising that every entry in this top-ten list is either a sequel, a prequel, or is otherwise tied to an existing franchise. There’s not a single entry up there that is a new, original idea.
One surprise to come out this summer was the failure of Solo: A Star Wars Story. Yes, it was the No. 5-grossing movie this summer, and yes, it pulled in $213.6 million in worldwide box office. But by all rights it should have done much better; considering the fact that Disney is behind it, and considering that the House of the Mouse’s previous Star Wars movies have done gangbusters at the box office and earned critical acclaim, the movie should have been much bigger. In fact, by some measures, it could be called a box-office flop.
Another surprise is the success of Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again. Normally you’d expect a sequel to a 10-year-old movie based on a Broadway musical to be dumped in a quieter season – say, winter. But considering that the 2008 original wound up making $615 million on a $52 million budget, it may not be such a surprise after all.