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PODCAST |All Hail The King? We give you our take on Godzilla: King of Monsters! Must-see or wait for cable? We discuss the newest installment of the Titan-verse.

PLUS: Holy Twilight! We’ve got a new Batman To Discuss!

AND: We interview TWLOHA founder Jaime Tworkowski on the eve of the Mental Health Comedy Tour.

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Segment 1: Godzilla: The Bigger the Monster, the Harder the Fall at the Box Office

‘Godzilla: King of the Monsters’ not only sold fewer than half as many tickets as its 2014 precursor, but it also had a worse opening than the 1998 ‘Godzilla.’

Five years ago, the people complained there wasn’t enough Godzilla in the Godzilla remake. So, they put more of Godzilla and many other major monsters in the sequel, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, but the people just didn’t care anymore. That’s what it looks like now that King of the Monsters is proving to be anything but the king of movie franchises here in America, debuting not only far below its 2014 precursor but also significantly lower than the 1998 Godzilla, which was considered to be a box office disappointment. As always with properties like this, though, at least there are the international grosses.

Godzilla: King of the Monsters did open in first place on the domestic chart, which looks positive. However, the Warner Bros. MonsterVerse sequel only sold 5.3 million tickets in North America. That’s fewer than half of the amount of the previous Godzilla, which drew 11.2 million in its first weekend. It’s also a significantly smaller debut audience than fellow MonsterVerse franchise release Kong: Skull Island, which opened with 6.9 million tickets sold in 2017. As for that 1998 flop, the Roland Emmerich-helmed Hollywood attempt drew 9.4 million people in North America for its domestic box office kickoff, also reigning in first place.

The lower turnout for King of the Monsters wasn’t much of a surprise. Reviews turned out to be mostly negative, its Rotten Tomatoes score of 39% being the lowest for the brand since the 1998 version’s 16% and the third worst overall. The other two MonsterVerse titles were Certified Fresh, both with the same score of 75%. But King of the Monsters also wasn’t tracking very well. Back in early April, Box Office Pro’s long-range forecast put its domestic opening gross in the range of $46-60 million with $46 million being its more precise prediction. Last week, the site raised its expectations, however, to a guess of $56 million. The actual domestic gross through this Sunday is estimated to be $47.8 million.

Overseas, King of the Monsters isn’t faring much better, despite the optics of its additional $130 million grossed outside North America. Consider the amounts pulled this week compared to the 2014 grosses in the UK ($4.4 million vs. $10.4 million), Russia ($2.5 million vs. $9.1 million), Mexico ($4.6 million vs. $8.9 million), France ($2.6 million vs. $6.5 million), and Korea ($2.2 million vs. $4.5 million). Fortunately, the Godzilla sequel about doubled the 2014 take in China, debuting with $70 million vs. the previous movie’s then-record-breaking $36 million. In the franchise’s original homeland of Japan, King of the Monsters also slightly improved over Godzilla, grossing $8.4 million vs. $7 million.

We can expect a huge drop next weekend, too, as word of mouth won’t help bring a lot of extra moviegoers in North America, at least. King of the Monsters received a ‘B+’ grade via CinemaScore polling, which is level with Godzilla‘s grade five years ago, as well as that of Kong: Skull Island. At least the fans like these movies consistently and better than the 1998 movie, which earned a ‘B-‘ grade. The audience score from verified ticket buyers on Rotten Tomatoes does look more promising, however, at 87%. Those are surely the fans who felt they got what they wanted with the monster battles and don’t care about its screenplay and human character problems.

The question now is whether this disappointingly dwindling audience will be even fewer when the next MonsterVerse installment, already in production, arrives in theaters next March. In that sequel, Godzilla vs. Kong, the King of the Monsters wrestles with the great ape King Kong. That might be enough of a mashup matchup to woo additional crowds who didn’t care about Godzilla vs. Rodan, Mothra, and King Ghidorah. Probably not enough to make this a franchise that keeps on going given its scale and cost and the limitations of where the MonsterVerse can venture creatively. No, we probably won’t get more Ghidorah or Mecha King Ghidorah or Destroyah.

Spotlight: Jaime Tworkowski

Spotlight: Jamie Tworkowski


Jamie Tworkowski
(848) 248-5718
Jamie grew up in the surfing world and later fell in love with music and writing. TWLOHA began as his attempt to tell a story and help a friend in 2006. Today, Jamie spends much of his time on the road, telling the TWLOHA story and encouraging audiences at universities, concerts, and music festivals. He has been interviewed by NBC Nightly News, CBS Sunday Morning and Rolling Stone magazine. Jamie’s favorite things are his family and friends (especially his new nephews, Landon and Declan), music, surfing, basketball (#TeamKorver), and Dr. Pepper. He drinks iced coffee every morning, even when it’s snowing. Not many people know this, but Jamie is an introvert. His first book, If You Feel Too Much, is now available.
Florida-based non-profit To Write Love on Her Arms (TWLOHA) is teaming up with the Mental Health Comedy Tour for a one night event at Comic Strip Live on Thursday, May 30th. Tickets are available now for $25, with half of proceeds benefitting TWLOHA.

The line up for the evening includes TWLOHA founder Jamie Tworkowski, comedian Joe Matarese, and host Preston Gitlin, who will be using their voices to fight the stigma that surrounds mental health.

Since its start in 2006, TWLOHA has sought to remind people that their story is important and they are not alone in their struggles. In their 13-year history, TWLOHA has donated over $2.3 million directly into treatment, traveled more than 3.4 million miles to meet people face-to-face at nearly 3,000 events, and has responded to over 210,000 messages from over 100 countries.

Mental Health





Spin The Racks

It’s Official! Robert Pattinson Is The Batman!

It’s Official! Robert Pattinson Is The Batman!

Earlier this month word leaked that 33-year-old English actor Robert Pattinson of Twilight fame was the front-runner for the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman in writer/director Matt Reeves’ The Batman. Now Deadline has confirmed that Warner Bros. has approved Pattinson for the film, which will be the first of a planned trilogy.

Another Englishman, Tolkien and Dark Phoenix star Nicholas Hoult, was a heavy runner-up for the role. He made a dueling audition tape to Pattinson’s. Although the studio liked both actors, Reeves’ preference apparently was for Pattinson, who has the Cannes film The Lighthouse opening later this year and will next co-star in Tenet for previous Batman filmmaker Christopher Nolan. Reeves’ film will feature a younger Batman, a major reason behind former Batman star Ben Affleck vacating the role, and will have a film noir tone focusing more on the character’s detective abilities.

Since his breakout role in the Twilight films, Pattinson has largely stayed away from blockbuster films. His credits include Maps to the StarsQueen of the DesertLifeThe Lost City of Z and Good Time. More recently, Pattinson starred in High Life, a sci-fi/horror film that saw release earlier this year.

Reeves (Cloverfield, Apes franchise) will write and direct The Batman, produced by Dylan Clark (War for the Planet of the Apes) and should hit theaters on June 25, 2021. Now that the title role is settled, other casting announcements should quickly follow. The film may begin pre-production this summer.

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NEXT WEEK:  We review Dark Phoenix and welcome Newsarama’s Chris Arrant on to spin the X-racks!