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The summer movie season typically begins with Memorial Day weekend, signaling the start of blockbuster season. However, this year’s Memorial Day weekend box office numbers were disappointing, with estimated ticket sales of $128.3 million, significantly lower than previous years. The film “Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga” was the top movie with $32 million in sales, leading to the lowest-grossing Memorial Day weekend since 1995.

The lackluster start to the summer box office can be attributed to last year’s Hollywood strikes, causing production delays and affecting the lineup of movies for the 2024 season. With a focus on mid-range sequels and family-friendly animated films, such as “Bad Boys: Ride or Die” and “Inside Out 2,” the box office is predicted to be down 20% to 25% compared to last year.

The absence of major franchise films, like Marvel movies, has contributed to the slow start of the summer box office. However, analysts are hopeful that upcoming releases, such as “Despicable Me 4,” “Inside Out 2,” and “Deadpool & Wolverine,” could help boost ticket sales during the summer months. The reliance on these films to perform well is crucial for the overall success of the 2024 box office.

The summer season between Memorial Day and Labor Day has historically brought in significant revenue, totaling upwards of $4 billion in domestic earnings. With the rebound of the box office post-pandemic seen in 2023, expectations are high for the 2024 season, especially with potential hits like “Deadpool & Wolverine” and “Inside Out 2” on the horizon.

Disney’s summer offerings, particularly “Inside Out 2,” are expected to play a key role in shaping the 2024 box office performance. The studio’s delayed releases due to labor strikes have impacted the industry, and the success of films like “Deadpool & Wolverine” could help energize audiences and drive ticket sales.

Despite the slow start to the summer box office, industry experts remain optimistic about the potential for a rebound later in the year. With strong titles set for release in the second half of 2024, including “Beetlejuice Beetlejuice” and “Transformers One,” there is hope that the box office can recover and potentially exceed expectations in the coming months. Moviegoing habits have changed post-pandemic, but there is still enthusiasm for the theatrical experience, suggesting that audiences are eager to support blockbuster hits in theaters.

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