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AMC Boost Screenings for DOCTOR STRANGE 2 As Theaters Look To Rebound

Photo from IMDb

AMC Boost Screenings for DOCTOR STRANGE 2 As Theaters Look To Rebound

By Movieguide® Staff

In New York City, an AMC hosted over 60 screenings of DOCTOR STRANGE IN THE MULTIVERSE OF MADNESS in just 12 hours.

According to Variety, the latest installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) recorded the seventh-largest wide release in history, appearing in over 4,500 theaters across the US.

What is very clearly a strategy by AMC—and a successful one at that, with total opening weekend earnings reaching $187—some analysts wonder if the special blockbuster treatment could ultimately hurt the Box Office.

A box office analyst with Exhibitor Relations, Jeff Bock said that despite the extra hype surrounding MCU blockbusters, independent movie releases have always tried to avoid sharing theaters with tentpole movies.

“Indies have a difficult time having their films stay in theaters for more than three or four weeks. The fact that ‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’ has been playing remarkably for six — that’s an outlier,” Bock told Variety. “It’s very difficult to maintain any sort of momentum if you’re not one of the big studios.

“There’s no negotiating with Disney, it usually sets the terms,” Bock added. “They’ll say something like, ‘Listen, if you don’t play this in 12 screens for four weeks, we’re not even giving you our next film.'”

While DOCTOR STRANGE had little competition with other blockbusters, Bock notes that negotiations will heat up over the Summer.

“It is when we get into June and July when the negotiations will get more heated. There’s a lot of blockbuster films fighting for screens,” Bock said.

Bock added that due to the anemic box office over the past two years, theater owners have their backs up against the wall.

“It’s very top-heavy,” Bock explained. “If you’re a theater owner, you may not like it personally, but you have to go that way… They have to enjoy the media attention that the theatrical industry gets when a film opens like this and people talk about theaters again instead of talking about streaming.”

If DOCTOR STRANGE contained the positive, morally uplifting content that is found in previous MCU movies like CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER, the theatrical release hierarchy would be a welcome sight for discerning moviegoers. However, DOCTOR STRANGE follows the recent MCU trend of edgier comic book movie adaptations from and contains a confusing, dark pagan worldview.

A portion of Movieguide®’s review of DOCTOR STRANGE IN THE MULTIVERSE OF MADNESS reads:

In DOCTOR STRANGE IN THE MULTIVERSE OF MADNESS, a convoluted Marvel movie, Doctor Stephen Strange meets America Chavez. A scary demon is chasing America. It wants to absorb America’s power to travel between universes. Stephen decides the best person to help him defeat the demon is Wanda Maximoff, the Scarlet Witch. Their meeting goes well at first, but it turns out Wanda has been behind the demonic creatures attacking America. Wanda wants to use America’s power to steal two children from a version of herself in another universe. Can Wanda be stopped?

MULTIVERSE OF MADNESS has some fun plot twists, battles and lighthearted, touching moments. It also has a positive moral, redemptive premise. For example, the movie’s hero, Doctor Strange, is trying to protect the teenage girl and stop the evil, selfish villain. There’s also a redemptive finish promoting repentance and extolling the love children have for their mother. However, MULTIVERSE OF MADNESS has a mixed pagan worldview with false religion and occult content. 

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