Disney must be all smiles this weekend when OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL raked in a whopping $80 million at the box office, helping to end a 12 week slide in movie ticket sales. Although the new Oz film only has received mixed reviews at best, audiences didn’t seem to worry about that, and paid their good money to see the new 3D film that supposedly explains how a small-time circus entertainer magician somehow gets whisked away to the magical land of Oz and becomes the wizard there before Dorothy, The Tin Man, Scarecrow or Cowardly Lion visit in the future. Whether Disney intends to do a modern reboot of the old 1939 film isn’t yet known. But, the huge box office could make this a tempting situation.
The new Oz film cost $200 million to produce, which was quite a gamble for Disney considering the weaker box office receipts lately, where movies tend to be down a little over 12% at the box office from one year ago levels.
Sam Raimi who was the director of the three SPIDERMAN films was employed to direct this film that Disney hoped to guide into a sure fire hit. The film also seemed to do well internationally as well, opening in 46 foreign nations and taking in another $69 million overseas, with especially strong ticket sales in Russia and in the UK.
The movie business is one of most risky businesses that there is, and Disney must be breathing a huge sigh of relief this weekend, where the film looks to not only earn back the production budget, but also to earn Disney some handsome “green”.