The traditional opening of the summer movie season is the Friday of the Memorial Day weekend. However, the movie gate has been swinging open for the summer season earlier and earlier each year.
PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: At World's End will open on the traditional date this year, 25 May. Traditional season: Memorial Day to Labor Day.
Oops! SPIDER-MAN 3 opened 4 May and set the bar for the "official" season by grossing over 150 million in the U.S. alone, breaking all box office records. Sympathy to the other films that opened the same time, such as the Eric Bana, Drew Barrymore, Robert Duvall cutesy LUCKY YOU, and the multi-directed, critically well-received PARIS, JE T'AIME. THE WAITRESS opened two days earlier, but caught a pie in the face anyway.
Next big blockbusters of the season? How about OCEAN'S THIRTEEN (June8), HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX (13 July), HAIRSPRAY (20 July), THE SIMPSONS MOVIE (27 July), and THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM (23 August)?
Some long-distance runners not mentioned above may be GEORGIA RULE (11 May), NANCY DREW (15 June), RUSH HOUR 3 (10 August) that is scheduled to open against STARDUST, and THE INVASION (17 August). One that critics think will not have legs? J-Marc's EL CANTANTE (The Singer), and some have dubbed it "CAN-NOT-A".
We'll see how they all shakes out come September.