Throughout 2021, Warner Bros. released a number of highly-anticipated films simultaneously on HBO Max and in theaters, including Dune, Space Jam: A New Legacy, and The Matrix Resurrections. Business Insider released a ranking of these films measuring opening weekend viewership on the streaming service, finding that Mortal Kombat defeated every other film, with 3.8 million households viewing the movie last March. The closest runner-up was Godzilla vs. Kong at 3.6 million, but that figure accounts for a Wednesday through Sunday launch period. The figures account for homes that watched at least five minutes of each movie.
It's worth noting that Mortal Kombat's box office revenue was smaller than other movies on the list, however. For example, Godzilla vs. Kong pulled in $467.9 million at the global box office, while Mortal Kombat made just $83.6 million globally. Overall, the video game adaptation placed sixth in terms of box office, in a list composed of 16 films.
Streaming numbers are a difficult measuring tool for a film's success compared to box office, but a lot of regular theater goers have been unwilling to visit during the coronavirus global pandemic. Regardless, it seems Warner Bros. is happy with Mortal Kombat. In September, Variety confirmed that more films in the Mortal Kombat universe are currently in development. Since then, there has been no official word on the next film, but Mortal Kombat's conclusion set the stage for a sequel featuring Johnny Cage. It's entirely possible fans could see that thread followed-up on.
Adaptations of video game franchises have seen a lot of interest from Hollywood over the last few years. This year will see a number of major theatrical releases based on video games, including Paramount's Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and Universal's animated adaptation of Super Mario. It remains to be seen whether these films will receive the same level of interest, but it could push Hollywood to find more beloved games to adapt!
Did you stream Mortal Kombat on HBO MAX? Are you surprised the movie did so well on the service? Let us know in the comments or share your thoughts directly on Twitter at @Marcdachamp to talk about all things gaming!