Maverick” draws the biggest opening game of the weekend for Tom Cruise

Maverick” draws the biggest opening game of the weekend for Tom Cruise

Paramount and Skydance’s huge Memorial Day weekend opening for ‘Top Gun: Maverick’ shows just how much audiences trust Tom Cruise to continue delivering at the box office, four decades into his career .

Why is this important: “He’s really unique,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Comscore. “He’s become this go-to action movie star at a time when stars are getting harder and harder to find.”

  • It is the first film starring Cruise to debut with over $65 million at the domestic box office.
  • The film debuted 28% above Cruise’s last big hit, “Mission: Impossible – Fallout” in 2018.

By the numbers: The highly anticipated sequel grossed $124 million at the domestic box office on Sunday night and $248 million worldwide.

  • The film could oust Disney’s “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End” as the highest-scoring Memorial Day opener of all time if it generates enough ticket sales on Monday.
  • The film’s older audience makes its massive debut all the more remarkable. According to Paramount, about 55% of the movie’s viewers were over 35. The first “Top Gun” movie debuted in 1986.
  • “Top Gun: Maverick” has been released on more than 25,000 screens worldwide, making it Paramount’s widest release in its history, per Paramount.

State of play: The film has so far received rave reviews from consumers and critics, meaning regular viewers are expected this weekend.

The big picture: Top Gun’s smash debut means we’re “officially in the realm of steady momentum, or at least in the realm of box office normalcy,” Dergarabedian said.

Catch up fast: “Top Gun: Maverick” is the latest pandemic-era film to surpass $100 million when it opened at the domestic weekend box office.

Be smart: Cruise has leaned more into action movies over the past decade with franchises like “Mission: Impossible” and “Jack Reacher.”

  • Action movies are increasingly popular at the box office in the age of streaming.

And after: Ahead of the rest of the summer, Dergarabedian said a slew of non-action films should do well — a sign of hope for theaters.

  • “Lightyear,” Disney’s sci-fi animated film about Buzz Lightyear’s origin, will debut in June.
  • “No,” the sci-fi horror film by Jordan Peele, will be released in July.

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