January 6-8 Box Office Predictions

The first full weekend of the new year sees deranged doll M3GAN dancing into multiplexes as she hopes to have a strong #2 showing behind Avatar: The Way of Water. You can peruse my detailed prediction post on 2023’s initial wide release right here:

I believe M3GAN will perform similarly to last fall’s Smile and a low to mid 20s premiere would cause Universal and Blumhouse to do just that. The trailers have generated lots of attention and the overall marketing campaign (like Smile) has been impressive. There’s a chance it could over perform my estimate, but I don’t see it threatening Avatar.

That’s because the James Cameron sequel achieved the third largest third domestic weekend of all time behind Star Wars: The Force Awakens and the first Avatar. A fourth frame drop in the mid to higher 40s range should net it a mid 30s showing. Like M3GAN, I wouldn’t be shocked it goes higher.

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish should easily be third after an encouraging sophomore outing with Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody rounding out the top five.

Here’s how I think it’ll look:

1. Avatar: The Way of Water

Predicted Gross: $38.3 million

2. M3GAN

Predicted Gross: $24.8 million

3. Puss in Boots: The Last Wish

Predicted Gross: $10.2 million

4. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

Predicted Gross: $3.4 million

5. Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody

Predicted Gross: $2.1 million

Box Office Results (December 30-January 1)

2022 closed out and 2023 kicked off with Avatar: The Way of Water dominating the charts with $67.4 million. That’s right in line with my $65.8 million forecast. This third weekend was an important one for the long-in-development follow-up as it’s amassed $425 million stateside coupled with its gigantic worldwide earnings ($1.4 billion).

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish rose 35% from its debut at $16.8 million – in range with my $16.1 million prediction. The DreamWorks animated sequel hit $61 million as nine figures looks doable.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever ascended to third with $5.1 million, a touch above my $4.5 million take. Overall haul is $438 million.

Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody felt the heat of a disappointing second frame in fourth. Dropping 16% with $3.9 million, I wrongly thought it might go up at $5.6 million. The meager ten-day tally is $14 million.

Babylon, after a disastrous start, continued the free fall with $2.6 million in fifth (I said $3.2 million). It’s made $10 million with a reported $80 million price tag.

Violent Night was sixth with $2.1 million. I was more optimistic at $3.1 million. The R rated holiday tale has scored a solid $40 million.

That’s all for now, folks! Until next time…

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