In a season of sequels and family entertainment, STX Entertainment is hoping adults will turn out for the Civil War drama Free State of Jones, out next weekend. Focused on the real-life story of a Southerner staging a rebellion against the Confederacy, Jones comes from director Gary Ross, known for Pleasantville, Seabiscuit, and the first Hunger Games pic. Matthew McConaughey stars with Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Keri Russell, and Brendan Gleeson among the supporting cast.
Jones was originally set for release in March prior to its summer push back. The reported $65 million production isn’t your typical summer fare and it may have made more sense with a spring (or especially fall) release date. The studio may be depending on counter programming to lure older audiences into the theaters. Strong reviews could help, but I’m not confident this will break through in a major way.
Even with its well-regarded leading man and accomplished director, I believe Free State of Jones will likely debut in the lower double digits and hope for small declines in further weekends.
Free State of Jones opening weekend prediction: $12.7 million
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