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Monster Mash

”Godzilla” is a blockbuster that may go bust

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Despite monstrous hype, ”Godzilla” earned just $55.5 million for the Memorial Day weekend (Friday through Monday), well short of the $90.2 million record held by ”The Lost World: Jurassic Park.” In light of its underachieving opening, ”Godzilla”’s ability to make back its money is in doubt. Experts say that to break even, ”Godzilla” would need to make two-and-a-half times its budget and marketing costs: or about $400 million worldwide.

”The fact that action movies like this tend to perform most strongly in their first two weeks doesn’t bode well for the film,” says Entertainment Weekly assistant managing editor Mark Harris. But whether or not ”Godzilla” ends up recouping its costs, one thing seems likely: You won’t see little lizards storming Manhattan next summer. ”They probably didn’t do what they wanted to do most, which is to build a franchise,” says Harris. ”I wouldn’t count on sequels.”