The Rock's latest movie venture, G.I. Joe 2: Retaliation, was supposed to hit theaters last year but was pushed back so it could be reworked for two reasons: more scenes with Rock and his wildly popular co-star Channing Tatum, and 3D. The ensuing results at the box office have shown this strategy to be a success, even if it hasn't been as popular as the first film.
Deadline.com brings the details with some biting analysis:
The easy #1 was Paramount's much-delayed sequel G.I. Joe: Retaliation (3,719 theaters) which opened the 2nd best Easter Weekend. But that isn't as impressive as it sounds because the other movies in contention were 2D while 2010′s 3D Wrath Of The Titans debuted with $61.2M. G.I. Joe 2 posted $40.8M domestic with a cume of $51.4M (screenings began at 7 PM Wednesday through Thursday) which isn't as good as the original. But the second installment cost $50M less than the second and did better internationally which is usually the case for franchises. Paramount is estimating this spring tentpole's worldwide cume is now $120M after Friday's "very strong" overseas results were more than double for the same group of territories on the first Friday. This compensated for what I considered to be a ‘meh' 4 1/2-day domestic debut. It opened to $10.5M Thursday (including $2.5M from some Wednesday night and Thursday midnight screenings), $15.5M Friday, $15.4M Saturday and an estimated $10M Sunday. Audiences gave it an ‘A-' CinemaScore, better than the first installment's ‘B+', and that should have boosted word of mouth - but didn't. Actioner didn't connect well with North American audiences despite weeks of strong tracking and months of retooling for 3D and more Channing Tatum scenes with Dwayne ‘The Rock' Johnson.
The timing of this couldn't be better for WWE considering its WrestleMania 29 pay-per-view (PPV) extravaganza is just one week away on Sun., April 7, 2013, at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, featuring Rock headlining in defense of his WWE championship against John Cena.
There's no telling how much correlation there is between the two but if there is any at all, that's a win for WWE.