Summer time usually means blockbusters in the cinema. But where did the term and the tradition come from? Explore the history of the summer blockbuster with us. With which films did it all start? What changes made it such a strong season for Hollywood? And what does the future hold for summer blockbusters? We answer all these questions and more! Whether you’re a film historian or just your average film buff interested in learning more about your favorite pastime, read on!
The summer blockbuster began with a story about a “little” shark
While we can see the idea of a summer blockbuster from 1943 With Richard Wallaces War Movie bombardier, Spielberg’s Jaw is the name of the first “real” summer blockbuster. Released June 20, 1975, Jaw was the first film to gross $100 million at the box office. Jaw can also say thank you unique marketing plan for a successful premiere. With 24-30 second TV commercials, the unforgettable shark poster and a haunting soundtrack John Williamspeople had to see this film for themselves.
— Kyle Lambert – Art (@kylelambert) June 21, 2022
George Luke followed in Spielberg’s steps with war of stars. The sci-fi space odyssey surpassed Jaw at the box office with $775.8 million. These kinds of big-budget movies were enticing to filmmakers, leading to a wave of summer movie drops in the ’80s and ’90s extraterrestrial, Indiana Jones, Jurassic Park, Back to the Futureand more.
In the 2000s, summer blockbusters just kept coming X-Men (2000), Pirates of the Caribbean (2003), The dark knight (2008), beginning (2010), Guardians of the Galaxy (2014), Avengers: Infinity War (2017) and Hereditary (2018).
What makes a movie a summer blockbuster?
The Summer Blockbuster is a big budget film released at the height of the summer season. It usually has some crazy special effects or an epic storyline with iconic stars. Often the films are promoted several months to a year in advance to entice audiences to see the film in theaters!
Flashback to the early 1900s. Cinemas were sweaty rooms, especially in summer. Then, in 1925, Movie theaters eventually installed air conditioners. Still, nature called during the summer months, so what would make you stay indoors for a movie? Hollywood studios had to bring big, exciting films to the cinemas that were worth seeing.
Now, with upgraded air conditioning, comfortable seats, and drool-worthy snacks, movie theaters are an ideal spot for a quick break from nature. On rainy days, hot days, or whenever you want to spend a few hours in a cool, dark room, movies are the place to be.
Fans share their favorite summer blockbusters
Since the 80’s there have been endless summer blockbuster genres: horror, family-friendly, action-adventure, sci-fi and even romantic comedy.
Movie fans have shared their favorites on Twitter over the years:
June 20, 1975 was the premiere of Jaws.
Steven Spielberg’s blockbuster summer thriller is still one of his best films – I like it a lot better than Lincoln. The legendary soundtrack by John Williams, a terrific performance by Robert Shaw and a very menacing shark made this game a true classic. pic.twitter.com/6W4oNNpCwO
— Michael W. Freeman (@Freelineorlando) June 20, 2022
Michael argues that the original summer blockbuster takes the cake.
In the cinema; it was a 12 here in the UK and I was only almost 11 but I still made it! Turned out to be the best summer blockbuster I’ve ever seen, and it remains!
— Jimi Fletcher (@mrjimifletcher) June 20, 2022
Jimi remembers seeing it Batman begins like it was yesterday – a memorable summer blockbuster.
I remember Return of the Jedi hit theaters just as school was closing for the summer. Seen at the Cinedome in Ogden, Utah. I also saw Grease there which was another great summertime experience. I’m really looking forward to the new Jurassic movie!
— Fourkidslater (@WildesMillar) June 4, 2022
Two very different films that could reach similar audiences. I mean, Fat has in one of the songs “Summer Loving”. . .
High School Musical 2. No other film comes close to the pure summer vibes it exudes, and I’m not exaggerating in the slightest
— Ly🌙🥀 streaming obi wan kenobi (@hafbloodkhonshu) June 1, 2022
Singing, dancing, summer fun and Zac Efron? We can stand behind it.
It’s insane considering the impact Spielberg has had on different generations of moviegoers and how arguably he could have had the best movie of the decade continuously since the ’70s! For me, Jurassic Park is THE summer blockbuster par excellence
— Ryan Richards (@ryansrich1987) June 16, 2022
Ryan is a team Jurassic Park and always team Spielberg.
It’s interesting. I see the “summer blockbuster” as mostly action movies. Maybe an animated one, but the best blockbuster lists have shit like There’s Something About Mary and The Sixth Sense that I personally wouldn’t include.
— Erin (@ErinMPeyton) June 15, 2022
Erin has an interesting view that big blockbusters need to be story-driven. Does she have a point? Or can romance or horror films be just as valid?
Summer blockbuster 2022 to watch
The list of potential blockbusters for summer 2022 is looking more promising by the minute.
Tom cruise returns to the role of Maverick Top Gun: Maverick, appears at the end of May. With the help of fighter jets, drama, a pinch of nostalgia and Miles Tellers shirtless body roll dance movesdeserved the movie $400 million in box office receipts.
When I first watched it, I really liked Top Gun Maverick. On second viewing, I’ll hands down proclaim it the best summer blockbuster since Nolan’s run of The Dark Knight and Inception over a decade ago. pic.twitter.com/hm6QhS8MBa
— Chris Vogel (@chrisvogel_92) June 19, 2022
The end of the trilogy Jurassic world turns out to be another big blockbuster of the summer.
Jurassic World Dominion Important First Takeaways:
There is absolutely a world in which The Fast & The Jurassic could exist.
I’m not entirely convinced that Jeff Goldblum and Ian Malcom aren’t really the same person.
It’s a summer blockbuster that’s a lot of fun.
— Kyle the Baron of Pizza (@kyleembke) June 18, 2022
an unexpected movie Marcel the shellis called the film of the summer by some film critics.
– Cameron Scheetz (@cameronscheetz) June 10, 2022
light year is a summer film for viewers of all ages.
Pixar’s return to the big screen is also the closest thing to a summer blockbuster. #lightyear is a fun space adventure and a nifty way to keep the TOY STORY franchise going, but that’s about it. https://t.co/C7hs0dscbf
— Travis Hopson (@punchycritic) June 14, 2022
There are so many more movies to come! That Austin Butler and tom hanks-guided biopic elvis hits theaters on June 24 along with the scary movie The black phone.
Marvel fans, you’re in luck because next Thor Movie hits theaters July 8th!
Blockbuster of the summer, it’s true https://t.co/m7HefqF3KX
— SUNNY DAY (@THORFlLMS) June 21, 2022
We also have Jordan Peeles Science fiction thriller nope end of July and Brad Pitts fast train set for an August release.
Have you already seen one of the big blockbusters of summer 2022? What’s your favorite summer movie? Let us know Twitter!
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