As the followup to the third-highest-grossing movie of all time, upcoming superhero sequel The Avengers: Age of Ultron has been widely tipped to be 2015’s biggest film at the global box office.
But it appears Joss Whedon’s comic book epic has an unexpected challenger this summer after Hollywood studio Sony said its Adam Sandler-led sci fi action romp Pixels smashed 24-hour viewing records earlier this week.
Set in a future where aliens mistake feeds of 1980s video game stalwarts such as Pacman and Donkey Kong as a declaration of war and decide to use their own giant versions to attack the Earth (yes, that makes no sense to us either), Sony said the film generated a staggering 34.3m views in a 24 hour period on Tuesday. That represents a record for Sony, beating The Amazing Spider-Man 2, which went on to score $709m worldwide and land in the top 10 of 2014’s highest-grossing films. It is also only just short of the record 35m views snagged by the most recent trailer for Age of Ultron earlier this month.
Pixels is based on a 2010 short film by Patrick Jean which became a viral hit. The big screen version is directed by Harry Potter’s Chris Columbus and stars Sandler alongside Josh Gad, Kevin James, Peter Dinklage, Michelle Monaghan and Ashley Benson.
The trailer shows Sandler and his team heroically attempting to save the world from a variety of 80s video game creations, while occasionally stopping to gaze in awe at the fact that their 8-bit heroes are destroying a major metropolis. A key segue features the supposed Japanese inventor of Pac Man attempting to talk down his “son” before being bitten on the hand by the pixellated monster’s giant jaws and ordering in a strike instead.
Pixels arrives in cinemas on 24 July in the US and 12 August in the UK. The Avengers: Age of Ultron will hope to steal a march at the box office when it debuts on 23 April in the UK and 1 May in the US.
This article was written by Ben Child, for theguardian.com on Friday 20th March 2015 17.40 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010