This past weekend, “Black Adam,” which made its streaming service debut on HBO Max and topped Variety’s Trending Movies ranking for December 12 to 18, was untouchable with Twitter users.
Nearly 500,000 people interacted with the Warner Bros. movie online, both fans and critics. The film’s online premiere revived debates surrounding star Dwayne Johnson’s previous claims that, despite apparent box office losses, the movie might be the start of a new franchise. Many DC initiatives currently lack a clear future as the corporation restructures under the leadership of new co-chiefs James Gunn and Peter Safran.
The recasting of Superman, who appears in “Black Adam” at the end credits, is a part of that effort. Despite that cameo and current rumors, Gunn announced this past week that Henry Cavill wouldn’t return to the role.
The buzz surrounding superheroes overshadowed the highly anticipated “Avatar: The Way of Water” sequel from James Cameron at the box office. This past weekend saw the release of the 20th Century movie, which debuted at $134 million in North American box office revenue, falling short of initial projections by about $16 million. Together with “The Batman,” it had the fifth-largest opening of the year.
The Weeknd’s new song, “Nothing Is Lost (You Give Me Strength),” which plays over the film’s titles, was shared by fans as they discussed “The Way of Water,” which received just under 400,000 engagements overall on Twitter.
Netflix’s “Pinocchio,” which garnered an additional 325,000 engagements, earned the third spot on the leaderboard this week. Many fans posted behind-the-scenes photos of the making of the stop-motion movie, which director Guillermo Del Toro based on the 1881 Carlo Collodi story “The Adventures of Pinocchio” and set in fascist Italy.
Best Picture nominations
“Top Gun: Maverick” soared to fourth place with an additional 119,000 engagements. Before its global streaming premiere on Paramount Plus on December 22, the movie received Best Picture nominations from the Critics’ Choice Awards and the Golden Globes this past week. Tom Cruise uploaded a video of himself leaping off of an airplane while filming “Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning” to say “thank you” to the audience for seeing the film this year.
The Whale, a contentious movie starring Brendan Fraser, remained in the fifth position this week while generating an additional 110,000 online engagements, up 34% weekly. Fraser received a CCA and a Golden Globe nomination for best actor, putting the Darren Aronofsky-directed movie in the conversation for best picture.
Broad cinema release on December 21
To support the movie’s December 21 broad cinema release, A24 also unveiled a brand-new trailer, contributing to the buzz. With ticket sales representing the highest per-theater average of the year thus far ($60,000 per screen), the movie earlier this month had the greatest opening weekend for an arthouse film.
“65” also entered this week’s Twitter conversation thanks to a teaser for Sony’s impending 2023 release of the movie, which received 95,000 engagements. The science fiction film starring Adam Driver is the creation of “A Quiet Place” writers Scott Beck and Bryan Woods. The driver is an astronaut who crashed land on Earth 65 million years ago to battle dinosaurs. The movie premieres on March 10.
Golden Globes and CCA Nomination
With approximately 78,000 engagements, MGM’s cannibalistic film “Bones and All” also made it into the Top 10 this week. Some believed the movie was overlooked for the Golden Globes and CCA nominations this week, which contributed to the discussion (especially among admirers of actor Timothée Chalamet). On November 23, the horror-romance film had its national theatrical debut.
“A Good Person” from United Artists Releasing, “Emancipation” from Apple TV, and “Elvis” from Warner Bros. round out this week’s Top 10.