Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Batman Scored The Second-Best Pandemic Era Opening Weekend

The box office history of the "Batman" franchise is one of the more interesting pieces of trivia about the famous DC comics superhero. In 1989, Michael Keaton's "Batman" managed to pull in more than $400 million dollars worldwide (via Box Office Mojo), kickstarting an era of the franchise that ultimately never again managed to meet the high standards of the one that started it all. 1992's "Batman Returns," 1995's "Batman Forever," and 1997's "Batman & Robin" all sadly scored well below the $400 million mark (via Box Office Mojo).

Eight years later, Christopher Nolan's "Dark Knight" trilogy returned the Caped Crusader to the box office big leagues once more. According to Box Office Mojo, 2008's "The Dark Knight" is one of 49 films in history to gross more than $1 billion worldwide. Sadly, Batman's box office returns have been muddled in more recent history. "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice," Zack Snyder's 2016 film which featured Ben Affleck as the Defender of Gotham, only managed an $873 million worldwide box office gross (via Box Office Mojo), certainly a disappointment for a film starring two of the world's biggest superheroes.

Of course, if you're reading this, you probably want to know how the latest entry in the franchise, Matt Reeves' "The Batman," is doing at the box office. Without further ado, let's dig into this weekend's latest numbers for Robert Pattinson's debut as the world's greatest detective.

Batman flies high at the box office, but not as high as Spider-Man

Don't look so dour, Battinson! Bruce Wayne might have a famously sad history when it comes to movie theaters, but recent returns for the "The Batman" seem unlikely to cause Warner Bros. executives to start crying anytime soon. According to Variety, "The Batman" scored the second-biggest pandemic-era domestic opening at the box office, pulling in an estimated $128.5 million payday in its first weekend alone, a number that is evidently pleasing Warner Bros. executives.

"It's fun to see the public really embrace the movie," said Jeff Goldstein, the president of domestic distribution at Warner Bros (via Variety). "Since the movie is three hours long, it became appointment viewing. That bodes well for its run on the big screen. It helps that the word of mouth is so strong." Indeed, although the film has some detractorsRotten Tomatoes has already gifted it a "Certified Fresh" badge. Per Rotten Tomatoes, 85% of critics give the film a positive review and a whole 90% of audiences agree.

While this certainly represents the biggest opening of 2022 yet, it falls well short of last December's $260 million launch for "Spider-Man: No Way Home" (via Box Office Mojo). Although "Spider-Man: No Way Home" was released closer to the rise of the COVID-19 Omicron variant in the United States (via New York Times), "Spider-Man" films have historically performed better than "Batman" films at the box office (via Box Office Mojo), certainly something of note when it comes to the latest "Spider-Man" movie's box office haul

Additionally, the latest numbers only give "The Batman" the fourth-highest opening in the history of "Batman" films, significantly below the opening weekend grosses of "The Dark Knight," "The Dark Knight Rises," and "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice" (via Box Office Mojo). Still, given the fact that "The Batman" has claimed the second-biggest domestic opening of the pandemic era, this seems like a win for DC fans so far.