For the past month, Disney’s mega-hit Zootopia has cornered the family market and stampeded to a current gross of over $275 million. The next kiddie friendly blockbuster looks to be the studio’s own The Jungle Book, which swings into theaters next weekend.
From Iron Man director Jon Favreau, this animal tale remakes Disney’s 1967 animated pic based on Rudyard Kipling’s celebrated works. It also continues their recent trend (Maleficent, Cinderella) of live action remaking titles from their storied past. Book casts newcomer Neel Sethi as young Mowgli with lots of familiar faces voicing the creatures. That list includes Bill Murray, Ben Kingsley, Idris Elba, Scarlett Johansson, and Lupita N’Yongo.
As I see it, The Jungle Book appears primed for a terrific opening in range with the aforementioned Mouse Factory products. 2014’s Maleficent debuted to $69 million. Last year’s Cinderella premiered with $67 million. Their respective domestic hauls were $241M and $201M. Interestingly, just today, Warner Bros own Jungle Book remake (directed by Andy Serkis) has been pushed from 2017 to 2018.
Boasting a current 100% Rotten Tomatoes score should only further positive word of mouth. I believe this could potentially top the remakes that came before it and exceed $70 million.
The Jungle Book opening weekend prediction: $74.6 million
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