The flood of information never stops. Exhibitors and distributors wring their hands, Nor have they done since 2019, the year before the pandemic, the confinement and the deepening crisis in the sector. Premieres practically followed for “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny”, “Mission Impossible: Deadly Judgment-Part 1”, “Oppenheimer” and “Barbie”, to which should be added, to a somewhat lesser extent, the latest Pixar production, “Elemental” and, in strict Spanish terms, Santiago Segura’s new family comedy, “Vacacion”. They have succeeded in convincing people to return “in bulk” to cinema, as has not been seen in years.
‘Barbie’ is the great phenomenon: there is not a single ticket for sale if you attend the mid-afternoon sessions in any room in Barcelona on Friday without having purchased it in advance. But the return of Indy and Ethan Hunt, the summer vacation designed by Segura to hit the target when the heat turns sour, and the tragic tribulations of the inventor of the atomic bomb have returned movie theaters to what was normal at this time: a full house.
“Barbie” raised seven million euros in Spain in just four days of the fair, from Thursday to Sunday last week. Even Yolanda Diaz, the leader of Sumar, the fourth power with the most votes in this last election, decided to go see Greta Gerwig the day before, the day of reflection. Reflecting on the feminist rhetoric of Barbie while the (finally softened) shadow of the alt-right flutters through access to government should pay off in detachment from harsh reality.
A look at the numbers, cool but resounding, gives Barbie the win in absolute terms. It cost 90 million euros, collected 140 million euros in its first weekend in the United States and Canada, and garnered 304 million euros worldwide, seven of which belonged to Spanish theatres. The business round which, given that there is still a month and a half of the summer season and no other bomb releases on the horizon, is going to make even more money.
It will be a rosy summer full of atomic flashes, acrobatic actions of Tom Cruise or Harrison Ford’s return with the whip.. Oppenheimer, with a budget of more than 162 million, brought together 157 people, almost three of them in Spain. It’s important to note that a Hollywood actors’ and actresses’ strike could delay releases slated for the fall season, such as Dune: Part Two, by months, so the path for “Barbie” and company could be extended a bit longer.
Cinesa, one of the most important Spanish exhibition companies, declared that last weekend was the best since the premiere of ‘Avengers: Endgame’. On April 25, 2019. and that the exhibition in the IMAX room at Oppenheimer had reached 82% occupancy. We continue with the stats: between Friday and Sunday, 1.6 million viewers passed through cinemas throughout Spain.
Top ten tentative in our country is headed by “Barbie”, followed by “Oppenheimer”, “Elemental”, “Insides: The Red Door”, the new part of the “Mission Impossible” franchise, “Summer Vacation” and the latest Indiana Jones. It would be surprising, however, if another film in the “Insidous” saga and its paranormal phenomena rose to fourth place, and for Santiago Segura to overtake Indy.. They complete Spiderman: Crossing the multiverse, “I Love You Madly” – the second well-placed Spanish production – and another animated film, “Robbie, Adventures of a Teenage Kraken”.
Several phenomena coincide at the same time, in addition to the intrinsic quality of many of these propositions. The so-called Barpenheimer is a commercial miracle that hasn’t happened in decades: two big, opposite productions vying for dominance in theaters. It’s an ideal market situation: potential commercial successes that can interest the most diverse viewers. But we must not forget that every weekend no fewer than six or seven films are shown in Spain – Spanish, European, Asian, Latin American, animation, independent, author, documentaries – and many succumb to the machete of the first week of the show.