Coming away from CinemaCon, there were a number of rivals and attendees hating on the film and the footage that was shown (Will Smith singing “Friend Like Me”), however, from what we understand, reviews will dictate how powerful this rebooted Genie is. That said, it was keen of Disney to cast a ’90s star (The Fresh Prince of Bel Air himself) in the redo of a ’90s piece of nostalgia.
Aladdin we hear is strong with all quads, but best with females under 25. An opening in the $70M-$90M range is north of Cinderella territory ($67.8M opening) and Maleficent ($69.4M), but lower than Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland ($116.1M).
Disney for several years has continually planted its flag during the Memorial Day weekend and they still own the holiday’s 4-day record with $139.8M from 2007’s Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End. However, the studio continues to have a bad streak over the holiday with pics underperforming (2017 Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Tell No Tales at $78.4M) or flat out tanking (Solo: A Star Wars Story, Tomorrowland, Alice Through the Looking Glass, and Prince of Persia). It would be great to see them win here with Aladdin, and it would be a big deal for director Guy Ritchie after 2017’s summer bomb King Arthur: Legend of the Sword. Not to mention Disney’s $130M live action take on Dumbo recently underperformed making $329M WW to date. Meanwhile, Avengers: Endgame which should yield a $600M profit at the end of its run (including all ancillaries) with a $2B global running cume this weekend, has the potential to make up for any slips that Disney makes elsewhere. Anticipation is very high by many B.O. experts for Jon Favreau’s live action version of The Lion King opening on July 19.
The original 1992 title which starred Robin Williams as the voice of the genie was part of Disney’s animation renaissance under Jeffrey Katzenberg (which started with 1989’s The Little Mermaid) and made a stunning $504M around the globe at the time, unadjusted for inflation. Tickets are on sale for Aladdin which opens on May 24.