There’s no question that Kingsman: The Secret Service has been one of the most-loved blockbusters of the year. It didn’t take long for talk of a sequel to surface, and now Fox has set the Kingsman 2 release date for June 2017.
The original film came out over the Valentine’s weekend this year in the States (and the tail-end of January in the UK). It served as great counter-programming opposite Universal’s Fifty Shades of Grey, taking second place with a very healthy $36m over the three-day frame. That figure went up to $41.7m including Presidents’ Day, which is really impressive for an R-rated actioner.
Moving the Kingsman 2 release date into summer territory makes a lot of sense for Fox. Valentine’s 2017 will see Universal unveil the first Fifty Shades sequel, Fifty Shades Darker. Warner Bros.’ also has The LEGO Batman Movie, which could sway young and adult audiences alike. And Fox has already set the slot for survival / romantic drama The Mountain Between Us, starring Charlie Hunnam and Rosamund Pike.
More and more, we’re seeing franchise-starters take advantage of traditionally-quiet months at the box office before moving into the summer season. Pitch Perfect bowed in September 2012 and the sequel opened in May this year. Guardians of the Galaxy bowed in August last year, and its sequel is set for May 2017. TMNT was also released in August last year, and its sequel will be released in June next year. When studios know a property has been a hit on this kind of scale, it’s good business to move it into the potentially more-lucrative summer season.
The Kingsman 2 release date will see it open opposite Pixar’s Cars 3, which Fox clearly isn’t daunted by. Cars 2 may have made more money overall than its predecessor, but it grossed $191m in the US compared to Cars’ $244m, and reviews for the sequel were much less favourable. There’s also not likely to be too much audience crossover, given that Kingsman 2 is sure to be another heavily R-rated affair.
More interesting is that the Kingsman 2 release date falls only one week after Fox’s current slot for Fantastic Four 2. The original movie of course bombed this summer, critically and commercially. Officially, there’s no word on whether or not the sequel is still on course. But this is a pretty good indication that it at least won’t be making that June 2017 slot. It doesn’t make much sense to have two of your biggest summer blockbusters come out within a week of each other, so expect the Fantastic Four 2 release date to get pushed back, if not have the whole franchise begun again down the line.
Warner Bros. will be releasing Wonder Woman the following week. That could have an impact on the Kingsman sequel’s ability to put up strong legs, especially with Wonder Woman set to be a PG-13 and Kingsman 2 sure to be an R. But the first film proved its ability to play directly opposite a movie as big as Fifty Shades of Grey, so there’s every reason to expect the sequel to do well.
Vaughn hasn’t officially confirmed he’ll be back to direct, but he has begun working on the script. Taron Egerton will be reprising his leading role as Eggsy, and everyone’s hoping Colin Firth will be coming back as well. With a bit of luck, we’ll also be seeing more of Mark Strong and Sophie Cookson. The first film racked up $413m at the global box office this year. And setting the Kingsman 2 release date for the summer of 2017 strongly suggests Fox is expecting the sequel to do similar numbers, if not better.
Kingsman 2 is set to hit US cinemas on June 16th, 2017. No word yet on a UK release date.