CASINO ROYALE (2006)
When Daniel Craig was first cast to take over the iconic James Bond film series, many were quick to criticize. Their main complaints: Craig wasn’t classically handsome like his predecessors, Sean Connery or Pierce Brosnan. Even worse: He was — gasp — blond! Fortunately for movie-lovers everywhere, Craig had the last laugh when ‘Casino Royale’ opened in 2006 to stellar reviews and box office numbers. The film went on to gross over $167 million at the domestic box office. It also launched two successful sequels, including the critically acclaimed ‘Skyfall,’ which closed out its 2012-13 run with $304.4 million dollars. The fourth film in the Daniel Craig Bond series, ‘Spectre,’ opens in November.
MAD MAX: FURY ROAD (2015)
BATMAN BEGINS (2005)
STAR TREK (2009)
Since Hollywood released ‘Star Trek: The Motion Picture’ in 1979, the ‘Star Trek’ franchise has been a pretty reliable performer at the box office; out of 10 films released between ’79 and 2002, only ‘Star Trek: Nemesis’ grossed under $50 million. So, it was inevitable that J.J. Abrams’ 2009 ‘Star Trek’ reboot would at least do pretty well at the box office. And yet, nobody could have predicted how well it actually performed. With rave reviews under its belt, the film shattered any and all expectations by earning $75.2 million, about $50 million more than that week’s second-place finisher, ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine.’ The film would go on to earn $257.7 million total, making it the seventh-highest grossing movie of 2009. The franchise followed with ‘Star Trek Into Darkness,’ which earned an equally impressive $228.8 million.
RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES (2011)
THE MUPPETS (2011)
X-MEN: FIRST CLASS (2011)
The ‘X-Men’ franchise has never failed to deliver at the box office. Unfortunately, that hasn’t protected it from bad reviews; ‘X-Men: The Last Stand’ opened to mixed reviews in 2006, while ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’ was downright slaughtered by critics in 2009. Luckily, everything came together to an outstanding degree when Fox released the surprise hit, ‘X-Men: First Class,’ in 2011. Led by a prestige cast that included James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, and Jennifer Lawrence, audiences were able to fall in love with the franchise all over again — and actually respect it, too. They were rewarded again when ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’ opened to even stronger reviews in 2014. That movie earned a stunning $233.9 million at the box office, setting up for the as-yet released threequel, ‘X-Men: Apocalypse,’ which will hit theaters in 2016.
7 REBOOTS THAT ACTUALLY WORKED IN A BIG WAY