Scoring no. 1 strongest month of 2022 so far, May did not disappoint.
Thanks in major part to the success of Marvel’s Doctor Strange in The Multiverse of Madness and the return of Tom Cruise and Jennifer Connelly in Top Gun: Maverick, May admissions reached a remarkable 11.3m, making for the strongest month of 2022, and the third strongest since the pandemic struck cinemas over two years ago – behind October (Bond) and December 2021 (Spider-Man). Naturally, the month was up +220.0% on May last year when most cinemas had just reopened their doors after a four month hiatus, and delivered an average of 81% admissions on the pre-pandemic era (May ’17,’18 and ’19). The month even surpassed our forecast by +18%, compensating for the decline left from April. Furthermore, the MAT increased to 120.4m (+933.7% uplift), while the YTD grew to 49.8m, which saw an immense uplift of +1,316.3% on last year, but a decline of -28.7% against 2019 when tentpole titles, Avengers: Endgame and Aladdin were released.
Marvel Comics’ new opener topped the box office this month as Doctor Strange in The Multiverse of Madness (#1), starring Benedict Cumberbatch and upcoming starlet Xochitl Gomez, hauled in a hefty £38.6m. Unsurprisingly, following in #2 place, and since having become the biggest title of 2022 (21.6.22), cheese-tastic nostalgia hit Top Gun: Maverick took £21.3m, which raced ahead of popular period drama Downton Abbey: A New Era, which achieved #3 with an impressive £11.6m. Up next, kids’ favourite super-hog Sonic the Hedgehog 2 slipped into #4 as it scooped £4.2m into the month, meanwhile action-comedy The Lost City dropped down to #5 with £3.3m. A24’s latest trippy take on travelling the multiverse, starring Michelle Yeoh and Stephanie Hsu, Everything Everywhere All at Once shot to an unexpected #6 place as it pulled in £3.1m, alongside raving reviews. Falling from a notable #2 last month, Harry Potter spin-off Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore landed in at #7, together with the fall of fun family adventure The Bad Guys (#8), which drew in £2.9m and £2.5m respectively. Rounding off the frontrunners this month saw enthralling WWII story Operation Mincemeat in #9 with £1.5m alongside Robert Eggers’ epic Viking tale in #10 with £1.4m.
Looking ahead to July, and with it the start of the school summer holidays, the month showcases a slate slammed with family features, as well as some intriguing indie flicks. However, leading the box office with an enormous estimated £45m sees the return of Chris Hemsworth and Natalie Portman in popular space saga Thor: Love and Thunder, which will have the teens and twenty-somethings flocking to cinemas countrywide. Kids will be spoilt this month also with everything from world-loved animation Minions: The Rise of Gru and superhero duo DC League of Super-Pets, to old family classic The Railway Children Return. In addition, middle-older aged audiences will not be forgotten this July either as best-selling novel-adaptation, starring Daisy Edgar-Jones, Where the Crawdads Sing alongside Irish coming-of-age comedy Joyride with Olivia Colman, and disaster drama Notre Dame on Fire draw cinemagoers back to the big screen. Lastly, Vertigo’s psychological horror She Will will pick up the younger female audience.