I think Paramount should think about changing the premiere of the upcoming film. Maybe at the end of the year was more interesting.
One of the biggest factors in a movies performance is what else is it in competition with.
A huge part of a film's performance is causal movie goers, people who aren't anything even close to a fan. And with that large block of viewers, it's all about picking which films are you more interested in.
May 2009 was almost across the board viewed as disappointing. Trek 2009 benefited hugely due to the lack of better (read more audience engaging films). The only film in May outside of Trek that met or exceeded expectations was UP and that was released at the very end of May. By that time Trek had already cleared 200 million, and the rest was bank.
This year, Iron Man got a huge, huge boost due to the almost unprecedented success of Avengers. More people watched Iron Man before Star Trek opened and during its first week in release then Wolverine, Angel's and Demons, and Terminator Salvation in there entire month of May.
People don't have unlimited funds. They will pick certain must see films and a number of films that they like (but on't love).
Compare things to that overseas. With Trek having a staggered release, they can minimize the impact of direct competition, that has helped the film.
Of course that and the fact that there was a four year break between the films certainly didn't help. For example, if Iron Man opened three years after the Avengers versus one year, I have no doubt that Iron Man wouldn't have received such a large bump in viewers.