Alien: Covenant
breaking down Alien Covenant Box Office numbers Amateur Style

breaking down Alien Covenant Box Office numbers Amateur Style

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PraetorianMember3070 XPMay-28-2017 5:50 PM

Since Alien Covenant released last Friday domestically there has been a lot of bemoaning about the films box office numbers.Many are trying to make it sound better and worse then it really is.Now here's my opinion,Alien Covenant being bumped from August where it would have had no competition to May where it had to compete with family Friendly fair such as Guardians of The Galaxy and Pirates of the Caribbean was a bad move.A hard R rated sci fi horror flick Vs super heroes in space and Jack Sparrow was never going to work.Then we have the 36 million dollar opening which in my opinion is fairly solid all things considered.It's not spectacular but could have been worse (Terminator Genisys is a fine example,it had a five day weekend and made less than Alien Covenant.)Also I must note neither Mad Max Fury Road or The most recent Star Trek Beyond didn't make much of an impact at the box office either and both series are still moving forward.As of now Alien Covenant has made Roughly 158 million,it's already recovered its budget and at 200 million it will break even.It likely needs to make somewhere between 250-300 million to be considered profitable to which I might add it hasn't even been out a month and still has large territorial such as China to open in (China ironically gave Terminator a big boost at the box office.)As for the quality of the film i'm not going to debate it.I personally enjoyed it but I also enjoy Alien 3,Alien Resurrection,and Prometheus so I guess I'm a bit biased towards the franchise.But I will acknowledge that I'm not surprised about the average audiences reception,these people prefer Super heroes,fast cars and Star Wars not chestbursting Aliens.They were never going to care especially with Guardians of The Galaxy offering a much friendlier vision of space.Ridley made this movie for fans not the masses.It was never going to bring in the numbers that The Martian did.The Alien franchise has never had mass appeal and never will.They'll keep making movies because there is a small loyal fanbase,not because it's a box office juggernaut.

Nothing the God of biomechanics wouldn't let you in heaven for 

17 Responses to breaking down Alien Covenant Box Office numbers Amateur Style


NeomorphMember1541 XPMay-28-2017 6:09 PM

Honestly, I think it was a missed opportunity to reach a larger audience. I remember before Prometheus came out I hyped the movie so much with a friend, but after he watched it he complained saying he hated movies that only work as a setup for a sequel. And guess what, after a 5 year wait Covenant arrives and does exactly the same. So what do you expect those casual moviegoers will do the next time: of course they will avoid anything with Alien attached to the title like the plague.


NeomorphMember1541 XPMay-28-2017 6:19 PM

I am not one of those who prefer Aliens over Alien, but I have the impression that if some other director (or even Ridley Scott with a different script) was to make a well constructed and engaging high octane action movie in the same vein as Aliens, with an emphasis on human characters instead of an android, the box office would have exploded. He could have reinvented Alien, This could have been his Terminator 2 or his Mad Max Fury Road. Even merchandise sales would have been awesome. But no, he preferred to go "niche" by surrounding himself with "prestige" actors and adulating writers who have no idea what sci fi is.


PraetorianMember3070 XPMay-28-2017 6:46 PM

I honestly feel the audience would have turned a blind eye regardless of quality.The worlds preference of movies have I said they want super heroes,not this.Even the worst super hero movies(Like anything from DC these days)are box office gold.Even the absolute greatest Sci Fi movie (Like Mad Max Fury Road or Edge of Tomorrow)from recent years were over looked in favor of the same old BS that has been dominating the box office f the past decade plus AKA superheroes.

Nothing the God of biomechanics wouldn't let you in heaven for 


OvomorphMember35 XPMay-28-2017 6:53 PM

The biggest concern is the amount it's dropping.  After the 36 million opening I was thinking it would end up at between 100 and 110 million.  Which wouldn't be bad considering it's 97 million dollar budget.  Combine that with an international box office of between $250 and $300 million and it's a win.  However now, at the rate that it is dropping it'll be lucky to hit $90 million.  The drop rate is worse then Power Rangers at this current pace and that movie ended up at $85 million.  The international market is also going to have a difficult time hitting $200 million.  So we're talking maybe $280 million worldwide.  They better pray China hits it big...also Japan, but I didn't see a release date for Japan.  Prometheus did $31 million and Japan did $21 million in 2012.  They will need more then that this time around.  The only positive is that it seems the limited Asian markets as of now have seen a Box office increases over Prometheus.  So they need that trend to continue.  They also have Blu-ray sales and VOD, Prometheus did $40 million off DVD and Blur-rays.

It's not only if the movie breaks even or makes money but the perception.  The way Covenant is performing the studio may not want to invest in another Alien movie. It's been a downward trend...Prometheus started strong then took a significant dip.....Covenant, mediocre start....then takes a massive dive bomb.  Unless Ridley can really sell the next movie and come in at an affordable budget I can't see them green lighting another one.

Here's a good website to check out for Box office figures, comparisons and graphs showing the future box office trend of any particular movie ....



NeomorphMember1541 XPMay-28-2017 6:57 PM

ninXeno426 maybe you are right, but on the other hand good action still sells tickets. Franchises like Bond still thrive. What I mean is, at this point I think Ridley Scott believes that he is supposed to be self referential and that the characters are supposed to be moronic, that a slasher reference would be adequate, etc. Why persist on the wrong path when almost nobody appreciate those tropes.


FacehuggerMember380 XPMay-28-2017 7:18 PM

@Joylitt- This is a great comment "But no, he preferred to go "niche" by surrounding himself with "prestige" actors and adulating writers who have no idea what sci fi is."


Bond can't compared to Alien and you get a lot of bang for your buck with those movies.  

We need to see what happens with China and Japan.  After it plays in those two markets, we can discuss if there will be another flick.  


PraetorianMember3070 XPMay-28-2017 8:42 PM

Valid points guys.Bond is solid Comparison,A franchise that has thrived for over 50 years.Alien has been around for nearly 40.I can only hope it continues to press on.I think Terminator is a good example yet again,even after what went wrong with Genisys they are still going to make another Terminator.Alien has drawn stronger reviews from both Critics and fans than Terminator Genisys,So I think Alien still has a future 

Nothing the God of biomechanics wouldn't let you in heaven for 

G. H. (Gman)

PraetorianAdmin4781 XPMay-28-2017 9:22 PM

Rule of thumb: Due to theater cuts, merchandise, ads, international distribution, etc, a movie needs to make somewhere around 2-to-2.5x its budget before it breaks even. That means the black zone for Alien: Covenant is somewhere around $194-$242 million (worldwide). Only after that is it safe to count your eggs and expect the movie to make profit.

From someone who hasn't seen the movie, but is used to watching box office numbers, I think the movie will hit the break even mark, but the profit margin will likely be small--All things considered though, perhaps it won't be much less than Prometheus's profit given Covenant's smaller budget. The rate it's falling is slightly alarming, but Memorial Day weekend is also an anomaly favoring more family friendly fair. (The R-rated Baywatch, for example, tanked hard.) I'm more interested in the third weekend drop off.


"'Nostalgic' does not equal 'good,' and 'standards' does not equal 'elitism.'" "Being offended is inevitable. Living offended is your choice."


FacehuggerMember151 XPMay-29-2017 1:12 AM

It is my opinion that it is actually pretty silly to try and compare how movie interleaving (sequence of releases of movies in time : one movie or the other goes before, after or at the same time) is to be taken that seriously. Studios have the historical data and some tools to help them out, but it is all pretty silly and highly unreliable.

Take for instance Ridley's crown jewel - Blade Runner. It is a much better movie than E.T. on many levels, except, financially. And they were both described on the tin as futuristic and fictinal stories. One is a story about helping an alien the other is...well it is complicated. Somewhat similar descriptions on the outside, yet figures were completely and fundamentally different: one was shoot on a budget of ten millions and made eleven in the opening week and went on grossing 434 millions, at that time; the other, cost 28, in the first week brought 6 and hardly made any profit. It is somewhat unbelievable to think that should BR be released before ET the story would have been any different. So much for the release timing.

But I am sure, if there is a lesson from the Prometheus to Covenant that Ridley should learn, is that he should not kill off his main protagonist like he did it to Shaw, where she dissapeared in between the Prometheus and the Covenant.

People knew before the flick hit the screens that Rapace would not be there. You could see she is not featured in the cast(listed as not credited) even before going to the movie. By doing just that, Ridley Scott has lost those folks who went to the Prometheus and perhaps wanted to watch her story to be concluded in the Covenant. While it does not make a lot of sense comparing guardians of the galaxy to the covenant, it makes sense to compare the numbers from Prometheus to Covenant. It is the same movie audience, your true core following which goes from one to the second. And by disposing off your main character like that, without telling a somewhat satisfying conclusion, it is just a silly way to treat your direct audience. It is a disgrace really. And the numbers reflect that. Imagine if Peter Jackson got rid of Boromir in the Fellowship of the Ring, the same way RS got rid of Noomi. Or say if he got rid of Eowyn the same way. Or the any other significant character, imagine the outrage and the backlash. LOTR is a bad example because it has a lot of main characters which are all necessary for the story and PJ could not possibly get rid off any of them. However, In Prometheus, RS had really only two main characters. And he got rid of her in a way as if she was a non story. How silly and wrong was that? By doing just that he surely lost a significant number of people who would have gone to the movie.

Ridley, while we are mostly ignorant and dumb we surely can easily tell our dumb friends and their mothers  that the movie "sucks" because it does not have continuity on critical issues on major proportions and lacks emotional payoffs from a main character. In fact, you took a grand piss on us. So I will tell all my friends before you can cash on them telling them what you did to our lovely Elizabeth.

Also, the same goes to the engineers. You brought up such an expectation in all the religious and agnostic, atheistic amongst us and did such a botch up job, that a lot of people gloated about it on all possible forums. Should have actually thought this through a bit better, perhaps told this story in a bit more detailed way; dealt with it more ellegantly, considering the fact that majority of your audience almost got to talk about theology, which is a topic interesting to many. In fact, I think, Ridley, did not recognize the significance of this point. If he put a bit more flesh around it not only he would be able to capitalize on it but convert a lot of newcomers to the followers of his ideas and the franchise.

The above two paragraphs should show that there were some poor judgements made and missed opportunities. Had he recognized this, all those superficial "deep thinkers" movie reviewers, fascinated and fueled by the material given in the movie would have spread the ideas in viral fashion and would make a lot of people think "hm, there is something going on the screens we should check out": you potentially had the material that could have made so much more, at least in my opinion, but what do I know. Chickenhead.

Nice night for a walk : washday tomorrow, nothing clean, right?

The answer is irrelevant. Have a good journey...


FacehuggerMember190 XPMay-29-2017 5:52 AM

Let's face it. It went against gotg2 and pirates. Those are massive movies. Covenant would of been better served in the winter or any time when the marvel movies and pirates movies were not out. Those movies draw big time regardless if they are good. 


All the rest of the negative nancies are Prometheus fanboys and they are mad.


FacehuggerMember151 XPMay-29-2017 6:35 AM

Prometheus fanboys are sort of Ridley Scott fanboys. They are also, most probably, Alien fanboys.

Regarding the timing of the movies, it is a silly thing. Because it works two ways: people going for the Pirates are also likely the target audience of the Alien. And so, the same movie goers who have watched the first movie(of their preference) might decide to go for the second since they bothered to go to the conema anyway. This way the second movie might get viewers it would not have gotten if it was not scheduled at the same time with the first. It might also work the other way, where a person has to decide with which one movie to go for. These numbers might seem suggestive of some pattern or rule but in general such patterns and rules are highly unreliable.

In any case, if you say Prometheus fanboys are not happy, I wonder, what the Covenant did or did not have such that those of them who watched both movies are left unhappy. Hmm, could it be the unfulfilled expectations raised by the first movie? Highly probable, imo :) Just look at the complaints - fanboys wanted a little continuity, that is all. We, fanboys, did not get emotional pay off neither in Prometheus nor in Covenant. Instead, it looked like we were given a rather not pallatable middle finger by writers and directors. Whether it was deliberate or was just a poor judgement remains to be seen. But in both cases, I argue, this lead to poor box office numbers.

Nice night for a walk : washday tomorrow, nothing clean, right?

The answer is irrelevant. Have a good journey...


FacehuggerMember380 XPMay-29-2017 8:05 AM

@Splatter is right about the release date of Covenant.  Regardless, that it opened alone; the following Memorial Day weekend has proven to be disastrous.  


OvomorphMember78 XPMay-29-2017 12:43 PM

" Blade Runner. It is a much better movie than E.T. on many levels, except, financially."

You have got to be kidding, seriously.


ChestbursterMember554 XPMay-29-2017 4:03 PM

Tossing this in here as I just did in the other Box Office numbers thread.

Bloody Disgusting is feeling less optimistic than they were in their last article. Even citing concerns about losing the sequel.


NeomorphMember1541 XPMay-29-2017 4:12 PM

I read this earlier. I think 20th Century Fox is going to analyze the data and will take action accordingly. I don't think they will greenlight another script with Fassbender as protagonist. They must be very unhappy  about "Assasin's Creed" bombing and Alien Covenant under performing.


ChestbursterMember554 XPMay-29-2017 7:35 PM

Cutting Fassbender would be an interesting move. I believe I read somewhere he's become a bit of a deterrent for movie goers lately. Not sure why though.


OvomorphMember35 XPMay-29-2017 8:32 PM

From an Amateur method of tracking I did some comparisons of different movies of the same genres....this is very unscientific but feel it has some merit.  Domestic tracking comparing numbers daily to Elysium and Power Rangers it seems to be tracking in dropping in between the level of both movies domestically.  I picked Power Rangers because it has a similar budget with a similar opening and it's Sci-Fi coming out the same year.  I picked Elysium because it's an R rated Sci Fi that came had come out somewhat recently.  There are not a lot of R rated Sci Fi with Similar budgets and openings as Covenent....actually not a lot of R sci fi movies period, besides Prometheus.  Elysium unadjusted for inflation finished it's domestic run at $93 million and Power Rangers did $85 million.  Although it's ahead of Elysium at this current time on Day's level of drop is higher.  Compared to Power Rangers it's behind in total box office but the level of decline is not as severe.  So between 85 and 90 million is where I'd put it at the end of it's domestic run. 

Now from an international perspective it's tracking almost exactly like Elysium.  You can break down every country compared to one another....Ya, I know I have a lot of time on my hands.  The totals are very similar.  Of course some countries are a bit higher and some are a bit lower.  The key is China and Japan.  With China Elysium did $21 million, of course as mentioned earlier Prometheus did 30 million.  With Japan, Elysium did only $7 million.  Elysium ended its international run at $193 million, unadjusted for inflation.  So If China does the same...around 30 million, and we know Japan will do much more then $7 million.  Covenant by the end of it's international run should be around $200 million. That's $280 million worldwide. I think the studio would be happy with that given the way things have gone.  They were probably banking on $350 million, I read somewhere that the Fox did not expect it to make as much money as Prometheus given Sequel usually perform lower and the level of anticipation for Prometheus was a lot higher.

Anyway that's my amateur math and logic but I think it will hold really close to that.

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Alien: Covenant is a sequel to 2012's Prometheus as well as a prequel to 1979's ALIEN. Alien fans looking to know more about Alien: Covenant should check back often. is an information resource for film enthusiasts looking to learn more about the upcoming blockbuster Alien: Covenant. Providing the latest official and accurate information on Alien: Covenant, this website contains links to every set video, viral video, commercial, trailer, poster, movie still and screenshot available. This site is an extension of the Alien & Predator Fandom on Scified - a central hub for fans of Alien and Prometheus looking to stay up-to-date on the latest news. Images used are property of their respective owners. Alien: Covenant, Prometheus and its associated names, logos and images are property of 20th Century Fox and are in no way owned by Scified and its related entities. This is a fan-created website for the purpose of informing and exciting fans for Alien: Covenant's release. If you have any questions about this site, its content or the Scified Network in general, feel free to contact Scified directly.

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