The summer movie season is just around the corner, with X-Men Origins: Wolverine opening this Friday and Star Trek hitting theaters next week. But which of these heavily anticipated tentpoles will see more green at the box office? Two weeks ago, everyone’s money would have been on Wolverine. Tracking data projected that the Hugh Jackman movie would open to around $100 million, while Star Trek was eyeing just half that, due to an apparent lack of interest from teens and females. But the reviews are starting to trickle in, and so far the notices haven’t been too encouraging for Wolverine, leading me to believe that it could quickly fizzle after everyone sees it this weekend. Star Trek, on the other hand, seems to be building momentum — the sci-fi reboot hasn’t received a single negative review so far.
Which is why I’m starting to think that Star Trek could be the bigger hit. To me, Wolverine projects a recycled vibe, as if the previous X-Men movies were plopped in a blender and then left out for too long. I say this as someone who enjoyed all three of the previous entries; in particular, X2: X-Men United surprised me with its thoughtful parallels to social minorities. But judging from the advertisements and initial buzz, I fear that Wolverine will have no new tricks up its sleeve. Star Trek, by comparison, seems composed of brand-new parts, and I’m intrigued that it’s shaping up to be such a departure from the previous Trek model. Thus, even if Wolverine scores the larger opening, Star Trek‘s aura of novelty is why I’m predicting it will ultimately equal (if not surpass) that hairy mutant’s tally.
Hmm, PopWatchers? Could Star Trek confound the box office trackers and overtake Wolverine? Which movie are you more excited to see? Or is there another summer blockbuster that’ll make mincemeat out of both Wolverine and Star Trek? Michael Bay, you’re not allowed to answer that question.
addCredit(“Wolverine: James Fisher”)