Tag Archive: Iron Man


There’s nothing quite like the start of May. Yes, the movie release schedule has become much more varied in recent years, with blockbusters invading all parts of the calendar. But there’s nothing quite like the start of the summer movie season.

The moments before the summer movie season begins are among my most hopeful. The time when all the would-be blockbusters seem like they could surprise, entertain and wow us. When the hype, excitement and hope is at its highest point. When a quick look at the movie schedule over the next four months brings questions on just how am I going to see all these movies? As a movie fan, there are few times that rival the start of May.

What will this summer bring? Let’s take a quick look. Part one will look at Superhero films and animation. Part two will hit this weekend and look at big sequels and potential breakouts.

Superhero showdown

Possibly the biggest film of the summer will also be its first. “Captain America: Civil War” is essentially an Avengers film. And both of those can lay claim to two of the top five opening weekends of all time. The buzz has been high and the reviews have been strong. Add in seeing the appeal of Captain America (Chris Evans) and Iron Man (Tony Stark) face off, as well as several of the other heroes in the Marvel universe, and this is a slam dunk. Marvel can do no wrong so far and the hype on this one seems higher than even “Age of Ultron”. It won’t be “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”-type numbers, but it may be the highest Marvel opening ever.

Opening weekend: $210 million.

Total: $550 million.

“X-Men: Apocalypse” seems like it should be set to enter the upper echelon of franchises. Yet, “Days of Future Past”, which performed strongly with critics and holds a very strong rating on IMDB, topped out at $233 million, essentially tied with “The Last Stand”. Only one X-Men film has grossed more than $300 million: Deadpool.

Given this track record, it’s hard to see Apocalypse doing significantly better, even if this is a great film.

Opening weekend: $115-120 million (four-day).

Total: $240-250 million.

“Suicide Squad” will be among the most interesting to watch from a box office perspective. It’s being released in August, which normally isn’t a great time (though “Guardians of the Galaxy proved a film can thrive in this timeframe). Will Smith provides a huge name, though everyone remembers “After Earth” don’t we?

The biggest question is how, if at all, does “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” affect this film. It is a connected universe, after all. And that film’s bad reception has caused a very different trailer to come out, one that makes the film look far lighter than all previous trailers. I wonder if that will dent this film’s long-term prospects.

Opening weekend: $85-95 million.

Total: $260-270 million.

Animation overload?

In a somewhat unusual situation, there could be a major animation overload this summer. “Finding Dory” will likely be the cream of the crop. Pixar unleashes a sequel to one of its most beloved films. It should improve significantly on “Finding Nemo” in terms of opening box office. The first film hit theaters with $70.5 million. This one should flirt with $100 million. The overall quality will determine its legs, though. “Toy Story 3” was great. “Monsters University” fell off rather quickly by Pixar standards.

Opening weekend: $90-100 million.

Total: $290-310 million.

I’m still not sure if I’m excited for “The Secret Life of Pets”. But thanks to a stellar marketing campaign, this one could be one of the summer’s breakout hits. The premise seems fun and one that, surprisingly, hasn’t been explored yet.

Opening weekend: $70-80 million.

Total: $230-270 million.

“The Angry Birds Movie” is one of those that could be hard to predict. I don’t know a single person who is excited for this film, but it should do well drawing the millions and millions of kids out to theaters. “The Lego Movie” taught us that films like this can surprise. But my guess is if “Finding Dory” is up to Pixar’s lofty standards, this one may struggle to find its audience.

Opening weekend: $35-45 million.

Total: $130-150 million.

“Ice Age: Collision Course” sees the band getting back together .. again. The series has had diminishing returns in the U.S. And coming hot on the heels of “The Secret Life of Pets”, this one smells bomb to me.

Opening weekend: $30-40 million.

Total: $110-130 million.

Here it is! The “Avengers: Age of Ultron” teaser trailer!

The highly anticipated Marvel film sees the return of Iron Man, the Hulk, Thor, Captain America, Black Widow and a lot more. The film stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson, James Spader and a host of others.

What do you think?

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Not exactly. But Robert Downey Jr. will be. RDJ signed a $12 million contract to appear in upcoming ads for HTC. One would think that Iron Man would fit selling the HTC One, but plans are for RDJ to appear as himself. RDJ also signed a contract with Disney/Marvel to appear in “The Avengers 2” and “The Avengers 3”. He earned $50 million from “The Avengers”.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

So some good news and possible bad news for Iron Man fans. “Iron Man 3” has earned more than a billion dollars worldwide already. But Robert Downey Jr. was in the middle of negotiations with Disney/Marvel to return as Tony Stark. Now comes news that he has a deal in place that will ensure his return in “The Avengers 2” and “The Avengers 3”. But back before IM3 came out Gwyneth Paltrow said she wasn’t sure there would be another stand alone Iron Man film. This news seems to support that cause as the contract is only for the Avengers sequels, not another Iron Man film. Are you OK with “Iron Man 3” from Shane Black being the send off to Tony’s stand alone films?

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Jackman done with Wolverine?

First came news that Robert Downey Jr. was mulling ending his time as Tony Stark/Iron Man for Marvel. Now comes news that Hugh Jackman may be done with Wolverine after this summer’s “The Wolverine” and Bryan Singer’s “X-Men: Days of Future Past”. Jackman told Entertainment Weekly:  “I wasn’t even sure after the first [stand-alone] film if I would do another. I won’t say never, because I’m still loving it. But there would have to be a pretty compelling reason.”

We’ll see, especially if “The Wolverine” turns out to be a hit. It does beg the question if you could only have RDJ or Jackman remain in his iconic role, which one would you choose?

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

“Iron Man 3”, staring Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, Ben Kingsley and more, raked in the second highest opening weekend ever. But with RDJ’s contract coming up for negotiations, Marvel Studios couldn’t possibly part with its most popular actor right? Here’s what producer Kevin Feige told Entertainment Weekly:

“I believe there will be a fourth ‘Iron Man’ and a fifth, sixth and a 10th and a 20th. I see no reason why Tony Stark can’t be as evergreen as James Bond, Batman, or for that matter, Spider-Man.”

Of course Bond has had numerous actors play the character, most recently being Daniel Craig. We now have two Spideys in Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield and a variety of Batmans from George Clooney to Christian Bale. Would you be OK with a new Tony Stark? Who do you want to see? And do you really want to see 20 Iron Man films?

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Good news for “Black Panther” fans. Earlier this year Morris Chestnut hinted that he was in the running for “Black Panther”. Now a new name has emerged. Chadwick Boseman, star of “42”, the baseball film about Jackie Robinson, which is proving to be very successful at the box office, is reportedly on the short list land the role. It wouldn’t be as surprising as you think. Marvel took a gamble on Robert Downey Jr. for “Iron Man”, cast Chris Hemsworth as “Thor”  when all he was known for was being Kirk’s dad on “Star Trek” and cast Chris Pratt from “Parks and Recreation” in “Guardians of the Galaxy”. The fact that they are considering actors is very good news for fans.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

I know, this is to create more good publicity for Robert Downey Jr. and for Marvel’s “Iron Man 3”. But it’s still cool. The Police Athletic League did a screening of “Iron Man 3” for teens who volunteered to help with Hurricane Sandy clean up. Tony Stark himself made an appearance, sending the crowd into a frenzy. You can read the story and see the video of his appearance, which is pretty cool, here.

The third film also stars Gwyneth Paltrow,Ben Kingsley, Don Cheadle, Guy Pearce and more.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Joss Whedon talks Thanos

When Thanos appeared in “The Avengers”, to comic book fans it was huge. He’s one of the gold standard villains. To non-comic fans, they were likely left thinking “Who the heck is that?” Joss Whedon isn’t shying about talking about Thanos. Here’s what he told Screen Rant:

“Well, Thanos is more powerful. He is so powerful; he is not someone you can just trot out and punch him. Like he did in the comics, you want him threading through the universe and to save the big finale for the big finale. He is definitely a part of what I have got going on. The thing about The Avengers is that they are very powerful but not very stable. So, there will definitely be some people that will shake them up in the next installment.”

It makes you think perhaps Thanos is being set up for “The Avengers 3” and not “The Avengers 2”. Anyways, “Iron Man 3” starring Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Ben Kingsley and more kicks off phase 2 this weekend.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

It’s strange to even be asking this. Joss Whedon’s “The Avengers”, which brought together Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Captain America (Chris Evans) and Thor (Chris Hemsworth) set an opening weekend record and became the highest grossing film in the U.S. and worldwide not directed by James Cameron. And it earned significantly more than any single Marvel film before it. Which makes it surprising that “Iron Man 3” earned $195.3 million internationally last weekend, besting “The Avengers” opening at $185 million. The question becomes, is “Iron Man 3” going to beat “The Avengers”? The short answer is I don’t think so. Even if “Iron Man 3” has decent legs internationally, it’s tough to see it earning more than $650-700 million. The wild card is its release in the U.S. The good news is that Regal and AMC are selling tickets for the film again, meaning Disney/Marvel worked out its disagreement with the two chains. But how big will it open? “Iron Man 2” opened to just more than $128 million in 2010. That means even if this film received a 30 percent bump like “Iron Man 2” did its first weekend from the first Iron Man, then we’re looking at roughly $170 million for its opening, well below “The Avengers”. That would be a feat in of itself though, given how third films in series tend to not do as well (“Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End”, “Spider-Man 3”, “The Matrix: Revolutions”). So if this film builds on its opening at all, that’s a good start, the big question is will it have any legs. The answer to that is yes. This film is getting rave reviews right now, although that might indicate hype will become too high. Still, this film should reach $1 billion worldwide, just don’t expect it to get to “The Avengers” box office marks.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.