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How much did the leak hurt Wolverine?


Some talk in the comments overnight about the big weekend numbers for Wolverine, and how the box-office seemed bulletproof to the online leak of a high-quality print (minus some special effects.) $87 mil is a lot of wolvergreen, by any measure, and there are obviously millions of people who were going to show up for Wolverine even if they’d shown the unfinished effects-less film in theaters. But to claim Wolverine is bulletproof, a person would have to be shot with one of those amnesia bullets (or whatever-the-hell they are.) With the help of, Let’s take a look at the opening weekend performance of the X-Men films over the past decade:

$54 mil : X-Men (2000)
$85 mil : X-Men United (2003)
$102 mil : X-Men Last Stand (2006)
$87 mil : X-Men Wolverine (2009)

Adjusted for inflation,* the numbers would look like this:

$72 mil : X-Men (2000)
$101 mil : X-Men United (2003)
$112 mil : X-Men Last Stand (2006)
$87 mil : X-Men Wolverine (2009)

Even without the inflation adjustment, XM-2 did 157% better than XM-1, and XM-3 did 120% better than XM-2. Meanwhile, Wolverine earned only 83% as much as XM-3. (With inflation, the adjusted percentages have XM-2 making 140% more than XM-1, XM-3 making 111% more than XM-2, and Wolverine making only 77% as much as XM-3.)

You could say, Well yeah, but the first three X-Men had a lot of hot chicks. And I’d say, Exactly.
Liev Schrieber < Halle Berry, Famke Janssen, Anna Paquin, & Rebecca Romijn. One could also argue that Wolverine cost $60 million less than X-Men: Last Stand, and I'd say, It looks it. RRA tells us that early estimates by Fox had hoped for something around $130 mil. That would be in line with the past trend of a reasonable 115% - 120% increase over the previous installment. So I think it's fair to assume the leak [and other factors lucidly argued in the comments below] combined in a perfect shitstorm to cost Fox many millions of dollars. It's also a safe assumption that Wolverine will see much steeper drops in the weeks to follow than the other installments suffered. Because while opening weekends are like taking candy from babies, that doesn't mean those babies enjoy getting ripped off. So the worth of mouth and repeat viewings are not gonna be there. Isn't there another franchise revving up to warp speed next week?