Blogger’s Update (12/21): On the eve of its premiere, I’m revising down Resurrections prediction from $30.7 million for the three-day and $47.2 million for the five-day to $26.7 million and $40.3 million for the five-day. This puts Sing 2 in the 2 spot.
The Christmas box office weekend is nearly upon us as a quintet of newcomers are presented either Wednesday or Saturday. We have the return of Neo and Trinity in The Matrix Resurrections, animated sequel Sing 2, Kingsman prequel The King’s Man, true life gridiron tale American Underdog, and the Denzel Washington directed romantic drama A Journal for Jordan. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on them here:
None of the newcomers stand a chance at dethroning the reign of Spider-Man atop the charts after it achieved the second largest opening of all-time (more on that below). No Way Home should dominate yet again and the question is how much it falls in weekend #2. The MCU juggernaut scored a rare A+ Cinemascore average meaning audiences are loving what they see.
One potential comp could be Star Wars: The Force Awakens which dropped 40% in its sophomore holiday frame. I’ll say Spidey falls a bit more than that (more in the 50-55% percent range).
With the webslinger secure in first position, there could be a real fight for the runner-up spot. I have Matrix barely getting by Sing 2 (though the latter will almost certainly leg out stronger in subsequent weekends). I’m only forecasting a $400k difference between them.
The King’s Man could be the odd sequel/prequel out as far as interest in concerned. I have it falling under double digits for the traditional Friday to Sunday portion of the weekend. That should be good enough for fourth place.
Underdog and Journal both premiere on Christmas Day and will only have two days tallied toward their grosses. I have the former at just over $6 million and the latter a tad shy of $3 million.
Holdovers not named Spider-Man should experience declines in the 40s and up range (this appears to be case when Christmas falls on a Saturday and Christmas Eve is a somewhat smaller day for earnings). Encanto could be an outlier and probably suffers the smallest drop.
Finally, Paul Thomas Anderson’s acclaimed awards contender Licorice Pizza expands and could deliver a $1-2 million showing (I’ll skew toward the middle of the range as it’s out on approximately 750 screens).
With all this Yuletide activity, I’m expanding my normal top 5 to a top 10 and here’s how I see it:
1. Spider-Man: No Way Home
Predicted Gross: $125.2 million
2. Sing 2
Predicted Gross: $31.3 million (Friday to Sunday); $46.8 million (Wednesday to Sunday)
3. The Matrix Resurrections
Predicted Gross: $26.7 million (Friday to Sunday); $40.3 million
4. The King’s Man
Predicted Gross: $8.8 million (Friday to Sunday); $13.1 million (Wednesday to Sunday)
5. American Underdog
Predicted Gross: $7.2 million
Predicted Gross: $4.3 million
7. A Journal for Jordan
Predicted Gross: $2.9 million
8. Ghostbusters: Afterlife
Predicted Gross: $2 million
9. West Side Story
Predicted Gross: $2 million
10. Licorice Pizza
Predicted Gross: $1.8 million
Box Office Results (December 17-19)
Spider-Man: No Way Home swung to unprecedented heights (regardless of pandemic times) as it demolished box office records and accomplished the #2 highest domestic opening of all-time (behind only the MCU’s Avengers: Endgame). Coming in just ahead of previous runner-up Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the Spidey sequel made $260.1 million (laying my estimate of $213.7 million to waste). While other pics are struggling in the marketplace, audiences were clearly primed for the event flick.
Encanto took second with $6.4 million, in range with my $6 million for projection and the Disney toon is up to $81 million.
West Side Story plummeted a troubling 65% for third in its sophomore outing with $3.6 million (below my $5.5 million take). Steven Spielberg’s musical has managed only $18 million in its ten days of release.
Ghostbusters: Afterlife was fourth with $3.4 million (I said $3.6 million) for $117 million overall.
Finally, Guillermo del Toro’s Nightmare Alley struggled to find a crowd preoccupied with Spider-Man. Despite star power and its Oscar winning filmmaker, the noir thriller debuted in fifth with a measly $2.8 million compared to my $3.3 million prediction.
And that does it for now, folks! Have a Happy Holidays!