Analysts — who had been counting on another record year — were hopeful that the summer season would serve as a stabilizing force after a tough winter and spring, but no such luck.
Domestic revenue on June 30 is down an estimated 9.4 percent year over year, while ticket sales for the summer season are down 7.3 percent following a bad case of franchise fatigue infecting titles such as Godzilla: King of the Monsters, Men in Black: International and The Secret Life of Pets 2.
Box office analyst Paul Dergarabedian of Comscore says "I'm not giving up yet, and am trying to stay optimistic. But I thought we would catch up a lot quicker. For every two steps forward, we are going three steps back."
Of course, the big exception when discussing the downturn is the Disney empire. The studio, which now owns Fox, currently commands 40 percent of the domestic market share.
That unprecedented dominance could only grow in the coming weeks with the release of The Lion King and the continued run of Toy Story 4. In terms of domestic market share through June 28, Warner Bros is No. 2 at 15.3 percent. Universal is No. 3 (15.29 percent), followed by Lionsgate (7 percent), Sony (5.8 percent) and Paramount (5.4 percent), according to Comscore.
Not even New Line's Annabelle Comes Home, the seventh outing in the Conjuring Universe, was entirely immune to franchise fatigue. It opened to $31.2 million over the weekend, the lowest of the Annabelle and Conjuring pics.
One bright spot: Working Title and Universal's adult dramedy Yesterday debuted to a better-than-expected $17 million. Serving as counter-programming to more commercial fare, the film is a win for original adult titles following the disappointing performances of Late Night, Booksmart and Long Shot.