This time last month, Tomb Raider arrived in cinemas. The movie – the third live-action adventure to feature Lara Croft – was conceived as a new start for the Tomb Raider franchise with a tone and story more akin to the games.
A month on, the film is still playing in cinemas, but is it doing well?
To date, Tomb Raider has taken $263,585,865 at the worldwide box office. Sounds pretty good, right?
Well, while $263+ million might sound alright to you or I, it’s not the kind of money Warner Bros. Pictures would like and here’s why.
From looking at the stats on Box Office Mojo, 78.9% of that $263+ million has come from the international box office ($208,100,00). This means only a measly 21.1% has come from the domestic box office. That’s $55,485,865.
In order for a film to be classed as a hit, it needs to make back its budget (and then some) in its country of origin, in this case North America. This is to cover the outlay, plus any additional marketing costs which are not included in the production budget.
Tomb Raider‘s budget is $94. As you can see, a month on in the US and the film is nowhere near meeting this initial cost.
Of course, if a movie doesn’t hit it’s production budget domestically, then distributors will look at how well the movie has done internationally. In this case, over three-quarters of the film’s takings have come from the overseas market, so internationally it is doing well, but with Black Panther, Ready Player One and the likes of Rampage and Avengers: Infinity War demanding audience attention, Tomb Raider is quickly fading into the background.
So, is it doing well?
Well, at this point it’s now worth comparing the box office results of this latest Tomb Raider with the box office results of the two previous entries – both of which starred Angelina Jolie.
In 2001, Tomb Raider took $274,703,340 at the worldwide box office, with $131+ million coming from North America alone (against a production budget of $115 million).
In 2003, Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life took $156,505,388 at the worldwide box office with $65+ million coming from North America alone (against a production budget of $95 million).
There are a couple of points to note from this:
- 1) Tomb Raider (2001) just scrapped past its production budget, but Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life did not.
- 2) The Cradle of Life experienced a considerable attendance drop off at the box office when compared to the first movie – suggesting audiences simply weren’t that fussed about a sequel.
Now compare this information with the current status of Tomb Raider (2018).
As you can see, so far this latest movie has yet to reach the box office total of the original. I’m pretty sure it will, but it’s unlikely to rocket past to a significant result.
Now look at the domestic box office of Tomb Raider (2018) and compare this to the domestic box office of The Cradle of Life – the least financially successful movie in the series. Tomb Raider (2018) has yet to achieve what The Cradle of Life made by the end of its run. Again, it’s likely to finish with a similar figure, but it’s not very encouraging is it?
These are the sorts of things that need to be considered when determining how successful this new Tomb Raider is. Was there enough interest first time around and is there enough interest now?
Now, I’m not trying to bash Tomb Raider as I thought the most recent movie was OK. It suffered from pacing issues, but I’d happily watch another one if a sequel was to get the green light.
I’m just not sure another one will happen.
So, how well is Tomb Raider doing? Well, at this point, it could be doing better.
Domestically, it’s doing bad. Internationally it’s fairing better.
Will the international box office guarantee a sequel? At present, I wouldn’t put money on it. I guess we’ll find out in the fullness of time.