Director Drew Goddard follows up his cult hit The Cabin in the Woods next weekend with the thriller Bad Times at the El Royale. Set at a novelty hotel in the late 1960s that occupies space in California and Nevada, the cast includes Jeff Bridges, Cynthia Erivo, Dakota Johnson, Jon Hamm, Nick Offerman, Cailee Spaeny, and Chris Hemsworth.
Early reviews for Royale have been mostly positive and it currently occupies a 77% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Box office estimates I’ve seen have a wide range from low double digits to high ones.
While this is a project that cinephiles are excited for, I question whether this can break out with a mainstream audience. For starters, there’s competition in the form of the second weekend of Venom and A Star Is Born and the debut of First Man. Trailers and TV spots are a little murky as to what this is actually about. While there’s plenty of famous faces in the cast, I’m not sure any of them will help much in filling seats (even Thor himself).
Taking all that into account, I believe El Royale will premiere on the low-end of expectations and may even struggle to reach double digits.
Bad Times at the El Royale opening weekend prediction: $8 million
For my First Man prediction, click here:
For my Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween prediction, click here: