A movie about the life of the world’s biggest gay singer is bound to make waves. And Rocketman has certainly done that.
From sparking debates about straight actors playing gay roles – heterosexual Taron Egerton plays the lead as Elton John in the biopic – to controversy of gay sex scenes being cut, it’s made the headlines.
Yet it all seems to be worth it. The dramatization of the highs and lows of Elton John’s life made a huge splash critically. On review aggregate site Rotten Tomatoes, the movie is currently on 91% (88% for audience score).
But how is it doing at the box office?
In the US, Rocketman faced up against some big hitters, facing against Godzilla: God of Monsters and Disney’s Aladdin in its second week. However, it still came in third with a $25 million opening weekend.
This makes it the fourth biggest opening for a music biopic, behind Straight Outta Compton, Bohemian Rhapsody, and All Eyez on Me.
Bohemian Rhapsody, which told the story of bisexual singer Freddie Mercury and his band Queen, opened at $51,061,119.
Box Office Mojo suggest this is well-ahead of Paramount’s expectations for the film. They expected around $18 – 20 million.
The film is in its second week in the UK totaling $15.3 million. The next highest grossing countries are Australia at $3.9 million, France at $1.8 million and Germany at $1.5 million. This makes its international (outside US) accumulation at $31.2 million. This brings its cumulative total to around $57million.
The movie cost $40million to make. It needs to earn around three times that amount at the box office to return a healthy profit as theaters take a cut of the box office. However, earning such a good figure on its opening weekend in the US, with positive audience and critical approval, bodes well for its longterm success.