When it comes to 2020 and the box office, things are a little different. And by a little different, we mean a lot different. There really isn't a good way to judge whether or not a movie was a success or a flop because the numbers are so off. Regal Cinema, the second biggest cinema chain in the country, doesn't even have any of their 500+ locations open in the United States. So when Wonder Woman 1984 came out on Christmas Day with not only a hybrid release but during a pandemic, it's hard to judge whether or not it was a hit. According to Variety, Warner Bros. seems pretty happy with the reported $16.7 million opening weekend Wonder Woman 1984 had. Normally, that would be a failure of such epic proportions that not only is someone getting fired someone is probably getting blacklisted. However, during COVID-19, that $16.7 million is seen as a success.
The thing is also that Wonder Woman 1984 also came out on HBO Max, which hasn't had a ton of success out of the gate. People likely signed up for the streaming service to watch the movie, and Warner Bros. and HBO Max are very much banking on people letting those subscriptions continue past the initial release of Wonder Woman 1984. The HBO Max numbers are harder to come by, but whatever they are, Warner Bros. is spinning it as a success.
"'Wonder Woman 1984' broke records and exceeded our expectations across all of our key viewing and subscriber metrics in its first 24 hours on the service, and the interest and momentum we're seeing indicates this will likely continue well beyond the weekend," said Andy Forssell, head of WarnerMedia's direct-to-consumer business. "During these very difficult times, it was nice to give families the option of enjoying this uplifting film at home, where theater viewing wasn't an option."
The metrics of everything are still changing, and there is a chance that Warner Bros. is just trying to spin a success story when, in reality, everything is on fire in the background. They did greenlight a third movie but that doesn't really mean anything. Green Lantern was said to get a sequel and that clearly didn't happen. It's still very unclear right now, but if the release of Wonder Woman 1984 did go well, rest assured that Warner Bros. and HBO Max will follow through with the hybrid release model for their 2021 release slate no matter how much someone like Christopher Nolan might hate it.
Summary: Fast forward to the 1980s as Wonder Woman's next big-screen adventure finds her facing two all-new foes: Max Lord and The Cheetah.
Wonder Woman 1984, directed by Patty Jenkins, stars Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Kristen Wiig, Pedro Pascal, Connie Nielsen, and Gabriella Wilde. It was released on December 25th in theaters and on HBO Max.