The World Cup Vs The Blockbuster
World Cup fever has struck Britain over the past week and Harry Kane’s last minute header was welcomed by over 13 million across the country as Monday night’s victory against Tunisia became the most-watched UK TV event of 2018 so far – but what impact does this have on the film industry?
Football’s Coming Home
In America there has been little impact, especially as the national team failed to qualify for the competition this time round whilst Americans prefer their own strange form of football anyway. Audiences are relatively low for the World Cup in the US and film releases can stick to their peak months of late May through to July.
In Britain things are slightly different however, as the World Cup provides the population with four weeks of consistent excitement right in the middle of Hollywood season.
It is interesting to see how some take a gamble, throwing their hat in the ring just before or just after the beginning of the World Cup. For example, Jurassic Park: Fallen Kingdom was released in Britain in the build up to the competition whilst Ocean’s 8 hit the screens a week after the first kick off.
A Late Blockbuster Season for Britain
Often the blockbuster will be sent to the cinemas in Britain a few days before the US, the Marvel franchise have used this tactic consistently, but this summer American screens will show a selection of big titles days, weeks or sometimes even months before they are released in the UK.
Shown below are the US and UK release dates for some of this summer’s most anticipated blockbusters:
The Incredibles 2 (accepting that Pixar/Disney films often tend to have a gap in favour of the US)
US: June 15th
UK: July 13th
Ant-Man & The Wasp
US: July 6th
UK: August 3rd
Hotel Transylvania 3
US: July 13th
UK: July 27th
US: June 15th
UK: July 6th
US: June 8th
UK: No date announced
A Barren Patch
This has left the weeks from mid-June to mid-July relatively sparse, a period we would usually associate with a barrage of big budget movies arriving on almost a daily basis.
Dwayne Johnson stars in Skyscraper that is released on the day of the World Cup final but this is the only major clash as Hollywood have of course prepared in advance for the football fever that engulfs the UK every four years.
Will this barren patch be a blessing for Jurrassic Park and Ocean’s 8 or should they have copied the rest? Maybe if England fall to an increasingly unlikely exit at the group stage then heads will turn away from Russia and towards CGI Dinosaurs and deceptive con-artists? This is not probable seeing as we all crowded around the screen to watch Russia Vs Saudi Arabia, never mind France Vs brazil…
Waiting on the World Cup
If you’re not a big football fan and you live for blockbuster season then you’re just going to have to endure the next few weeks before enjoying a later than usual spree of spectacular explosions and high riding emotion, not to mention the return of everybody’s favourite superhero baby from 2004.