I was expecting Transformers: Age of Extinction's weekend box office to drop 50% but apparently I underestimated just how much the "more of the same" reviews (including mine) and the holiday weekend (down 43% compared to last year) would hurt the film as it dropped a whopping 65%. The current estimates indicate a $36.4 million weekend in the US ($174.7M US total) with $95.8 million in international sales (($400.9M total) for a $132.2 million weekend. The estimated 12 day worldwide box office total sits at $575.6 million. A number that any movie and those associated with it should be proud of except that they have the unusual definition of success being measured as a final take of at least $1 billion worldwide.
Since 1 billion is how Hasbro and Paramount have unofficially chosen to measure the overall success of Transformers 4, that means any box office total below it will be considered a disappointment (if not just outright failure) that could impact how they treat the next installment. After the huge drop in the US, estimates now indicate the film will only take in around $245 to $265 million for a $25% drop compared to Dark of the Moon. However Paramount's focus on China over the US is paying off where $50.9 million of that $95.8 million international take came from China for a greater then US total of $212.8 million. The movie will easily surpass Avatar's $221.9M for top film in that country and could make up that difference in US sales.
In addition the movie is about to get released in a bunch of additional Latin American and European countries shortly after the World Cup ends. In short, 69% of Dark of the Moon's $1.1 billion box office came international sales and for Transformers 4 to at least equal that performance, it looks like that number will need to climb to around 75% (it is currently at 70%) if the movie is to cross that $1 billion threshold. If that happens a) the corporate powers that be will be very happy and b) expect the next movie to have an even more international flavor and product marketing than this one.