As Pacific Rim struggles to reach $100 million in the U.S., the film's sequel prospects may hinge on its performance in China, where it opens on Wednesday, according to a box office analyst.
Despite its third consecutive lower-than-expected weekend since release in the U.S., Pacific Rim has generated $140 million in ticket sales abroad," BoxOffice.com editor-in-chief Phil Contrino told TheWrap, noting that a $50 million-plus opening in China and similarly strong performances in Japan and Brazil could make for a $300 million global cume and give hopes of a sequel for the movie, which reportedly cost between $190 million and $250 million.
"That may or may not mean there’d be a sequel, but at least there’d be a discussion," Contrino added.
Of course, Pacific Rim director Guillermo del Toro has already said they're hard at work on a sequel, which would reportedly deal with the fallout from the first film's climactic battle.
"Just think about it for a second. We sent Gipsy to the other side, right? It exploded, but whatever remains stays there,” del Toro said. “The main idea that we’re bouncing off is the fact that Newt drifted with a Kaiju brain, and all Kaiju brains are connected. We say that. They are like a hive mentality. So, you know, draw your own conclusions. We’ve drifted with a Kaiju brain. Well, then start riffing on that and you’ll get to something."
The film was developed by del Toro and screenwriter Travis Beacham for Legendary Pictures, who produced it for Warner Bros., who kicked some money in and distributed the film, but reportedly own none of the rights. The film has been discussed as a prospective franchise for Legendary, who have been working with Warners for so long that they don't have very much intellectual property of their own. At the same time, they've been creating original graphic novels with major talent like Frank Miller, Mark Waid and Matt Wagner with an eye toward potentially developing the properties into film down the road.