The Morbius the Living Vampire franchise may live to vampire another day. Despite a plethora of bad reviews, the newest instalment in Sony’s Spider-Man-Less Cinematic Universe earned $US84 ($117) million worldwide over its opening weekend. It is by no means great, but is also probably just good enough for Sony to continue apace with its Spider-plans to continue building toward a Sinister Six movie.
The various Hollywood movie trades have very different opinions about whether $US84 ($117) million (as reported by Deadline) is a solid opening weekend for Morbius or a dire one. If you compare it to the last Sony Spider-movies, Venom: Let There Be Carnage, Morbius looks pitiful; Carnage made $US90 ($125) million during its opening weekend in the U.S. alone, and that was only this past October. Meanwhile, the people who make their living estimate box offices thought Morbius would open to about $US40-50 million.
On the other hand, as a character, Morbius doesn’t have 39.1 per cent of 90 of the brand recognition that Venom had, and Let There Be Carnage wasn’t saddled with poor reviews. Plus, even Sony only thought the movie would make about $US33 ($46) million this past weekend, although whether the film technically overperformed or the studio lowballed their expectations so Morbius would look like it exceeded them is unknown. Honestly, however, the best reason to consider $US39.1 ($54) million a (marginal) success is that the budget for Morbius was a mere $US75 ($104) million to make.
While this likely isn’t enough for Sony to make Morbius 2: Vampiric Bugaloo just yet, I imagine it’s fine enough for the company to continue with its plans to make the Spider-adjacent solo films Kraven the Hunter, starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson, and Madame Web, starring Dakota Johnson. I also think it’s just solid enough for Sony to keep barreling towards that Sinister Six movie it’s been hot to trot to make since teasing it in Amazing Spider-Man 2, despite the incredibly awful way Morbius paved the path leading there. But if Kraven tanks, and people don’t care about two-thirds of the presumed six (the third, of course, being Michael Keaton’s MCU transplant the Vulture), well, Sony would almost certainly need to adjust its plans. Might we humbly suggest…?