It isn’t the only September remake of a 1990 horror pic as Flatliners debuts in theaters next weekend. The film finds 5 medical students dangerously experimenting with near-death experiences with a cast that includes Ellen Page, Diego Luna, and Nina Dobrev. This is actually more of a sequel than remake to 1990’s version that was directed by Joel Schumacher and starred Julia Roberts, fresh off breakout PrettyWoman. Kiefer Sutherland, who costarred in the first, returns.
The original Flatliners probably benefited from Julia’s mega watt star power at the time. I don’t believe there’s an enormous amount of reverance for it. Sony Pictures best hope is that horror audiences who gobbled up It might be ready for something else.
That could be a tall order. I’m predicting Flatliners doesn’t hit double digits out of the gate.
Flatliners opening weekend prediction: $9.1 million
Tom Cruise’s box office fortunes have taken a turn for the worse recently with two flops in less than a year – Jack Reacher: Never Go Back and this summer’s The Mummy. The star will attempt to turn that around next weekend with American Made.
The true life crime pic reunites Cruise with his Edge of Tomorrow director Doug Liman and finds him playing Barry Seal, pilot turned drug smuggler for the Medellin cartel in the 1980s. Costars include Sarah Wright, Domhnall Gleeson, and Jesse Plemons. Unlike his two previous pictures, Made is receiving positive reviews with a current 89% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
That positive word-of-mouth might help, but I could also see Made opening somewhat lightly with hopes of smallish declines in subsequent weekends. Unlike most of Cruise’s recent work, this isn’t an action or sci-fi project that audiences have become accustomed to seeing him in during recent years. Its box office potential should rely solely on his drawing power (which has waned) and the approving critical notices.
I’ll estimate that American Made generates a mid teens debut.
American Made opening weekend prediction: $15.8 million
The two-week reign of Pennywise atop the box office looks to float away this weekend as three new pictures debut: Matthew Vaughn’s action/comedy sequel Kingsman: The Golden Circle, animated action/comedy spin-off The Lego Ninjago Movie, and supernatural horror flick Friend Request. You can view my detailed individual prediction posts on each here:
There is some question as to whether Kingsman or Ninjago take the top spot. I’m estimating the former will outdo the latter by approximately $5 million.
The continued amazing grosses of It could mean that three movies will top $30 million this weekend, but that demented clown should be right on the edge of that gross with an anticipated drop of around 50%.
American Assassin should slip to fourth place and I have Friend Request managing to round out the top five, albeit with a muted debut.
And with that, my top 5 estimates for the weekend:
1. Kingsman: The Golden Circle
Predicted Gross: $43.6 million
2. The Lego Ninjago Movie
Predicted Gross: $38.6 million
Predicted Gross: $29.8 million (representing a drop of 50%)
4. American Assassin
Predicted Gross: $6.9 million (representing a drop of 53%)
5. Friend Request
Predicted Gross: $5.7 million
Box Office Results (September 15-17)
It continued its startling run after its record breaking opening with $60.1 million in its second weekend, in line with my $59M forecast. The juggernaut has amassed an incredible $218 million in its ten days of existence.
AmericanAssassin with Dylan O’Brien and Michael Keaton was runner-up with a respectable $14.8 million, topping my $13.2M prediction. That might not be enough to justify a franchise, but you never know.
Darren Aronofsky’s instantly controversial mother! with Jennifer Lawrence sputtered in third with $7.5 million. I was considerably higher with a $14.7M projection. While critics were mostly kind (68% on Rotten Tomatoes), audiences rendered their verdict with both their money and CinemaScore grade (an F, which is practically unprecedented). Expect mother! to take a massive tumble this coming weekend as well with the toxic word-of-mouth.
Reese Witherspoon’s Home Again held up decently in its sophomore weekend at #4 with $5.1 million compared to my $4.5M estimate. The rom com has grossed nearly $17 million so thus far.
TheHitman’sBodyguard was fifth with $3.5 million (I said $2.6M) to bring its total to $70 million.
And that does it for now, ladies and gents! Until next time…
It’s been a big year for horror flicks and Warner Bros is hoping its recent success in the genre extends to FriendRequest, opening next weekend. The social media related supernatural pic is from director Simon Verhoeven (fun fact: Wikipedia is currently listing Denis Villeneuve as the man behind the camera… not remotely true). The young cast includes Alycia Debnam-Carey, William Moseley, and Brit Morgan.
FriendRequest is hitting a surprisingly high 3000 screens as it has some serious competition preventing audiences from liking it. Box Office phenomenon It (also WB) will be in its third weekend and still posting hefty grosses. Kingsman: TheGoldenCircle is premiering and targeting younger moviegoers as well. I don’t believe the $15 million debut of the similarly plotted Unfriended from 2015 is possible.
I’ll estimate moviegoers generally don’t respond to this Request with an opening between $5-6 million.
FriendRequest opening weekend prediction: $5.7 million
For my Kingsman: TheGoldenCircle prediction, click here:
The second spin-off from 2014’s blockbuster (get it?) The Lego Movie, next weekend we have The Lego Ninjago Movie. It’s based on the popular toy line with a martial arts flavor. The animated action/comedy features the voices of Dave Franco, Justin Theroux, Kumail Nanjiani, Michael Pena, Fred Armisen, Olivia Munn, and Jackie Chan.
Ninjago will attempt to retain a good portion of the family audience and Lego lovers that populated The Lego Movie. That feature opened to $69 million in February 2014 with an eventual $257M domestic haul. First spin-off The Lego Batman Movie couldn’t quite match those numbers. It made $53 million for its start and ended up with $175M.
My feeling is that this will continue the downward trend, but still post respectable earnings. It will also have the benefit of having nothing in the way of major family audience competition for several weeks, so holdovers could be pleasing. As for its opening, Ninjago could find itself in a fierce battle for #1 with Kingsman: The Golden Circle. It’s also worth mentioning that It will only be in weekend #3 and still posting big numbers.
The Lego version of Batman was off nearly 25% out of the gate from The Lego Movie. If you applied that here, we’re talking an approximate $40 million debut. That sounds just about right and perhaps a tad under.
The Lego Ninjago Movie opening weekend prediction: $38.6 million
For my Kingsman: The Golden Circle prediction, click here:
British spies join forces with their American counterparts in Kingsman: The Golden Circle, the sequel to the 2015 action/comedy hit Kingsman: The Secret Service. Matthew Vaughn is back directing with returning stars Colin Firth, Taron Egerton, and Mark Strong. We also have some new but very familiar faces that include Channing Tatum, Jeff Bridges, Julianne Moore, Halle Berry, and even Elton John!
Two and a half years ago, the original hit its mark with both critics and moviegoers. Opening to $36 million, The Secret Service went on to gross $128M overall domestically. With the relatively small gap between the sequel and its predecessor, I don’t see sequelitis kicking in here.
Circle could find itself in a real battle for the #1 spot with The Lego Ninjago Movie. Both pictures are expected to post debuts in the low to mid 40s. There’s also the third weekend of It to consider, as it still should be raking in plenty of cash.
I’ll project that the second go-round for the Kingsman (and now the Statesman) debuts about $7 million above the first.
Kingsman: The Golden Circle opening weekend prediction: $43.6 million
For my The Lego Ninjajo Movie prediction, click here:
Two new movies debut wide this weekend as It should continue its incredible run on top in its second weekend. The newbies are the Jennifer Lawrence horror thriller mother! and Dylan O’Brien/Michael Keaton CIA action flick American Assassin. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:
I’m anticipating a close race for second between the newcomers with mother! just edging out Assassin. I look for both to post numbers in the low to mid teens.
And… now to It. I have much more below on its record breaking haul over the weekend which blew away even the most generous forecasts. The question now is how much it falls in its sophomore frame.
As I see it, It should drop around 55% or so according to similarly performing titles. However, the Stephen King adapted pic displayed remarkably sturdy holds over the weekend from Friday to Saturday to Sunday. I believe there’s a chance it doesn’t even quite dip 50%, but I will put it at about 52%.
The rest of the top five should consist of the underwhelming Home Again and The Hitman’s Bodyguard.
And with that, my top 5 projections for the weekend:
Predicted Gross: $59 million (representing a drop of 52%)
Predicted Gross: $14.7 million
3. American Assassin
Predicted Gross: $13.2 million
4. Home Again
Predicted Gross: $4.5 million (representing a drop of 47%)
5. The Hitman’s Bodyguard
Predicted Gross: $2.6 million (representing a drop of 46%)
Box Office Results (September 8-10)
It happens and then some! You could see the potential for the horror pic’s opening weekend possibilities growing higher and higher prior to Friday. That said, it was hard to foresee just how huge it would be. It took in an astonishing $123.4 million… I was only $58M off with my $65.4 million estimate.
The film crossed into cultural phenomenon and must-see territory somewhere along the way. It deciminated records. The previous highest September debut held by HotelTransylvania2 at $48 million? It topped that by $75 million. The all-time horror opening record of $52 million by ParanormalActivity3? Bested that by over $70 million.
It also scored the second largest R rated premiere ever behind Deadpool ($132M). As far as 2017 goes, it ranks third – meaning it debuted higher than WonderWoman, Spider–Man: Homecoming and TheFateoftheFurious.
Sometimes a picture manages to catch a wave of anticipation that few can see. It accomplished that and then some. Chapter 2 will be out in two years and expect lots of Stephen King remakes to go into production shortly.
There were other movies playing even if no one else really noticed. The Reese Witherspoon rom com Home Again couldn’t overcome its mostly poor reviews to serve as counter programming to the It juggernaut. It earned just $8.5 million for second, below my $11.3M projection.
The Hitman’s Bodyguard was third after three weeks on top with $4.8 million compared to my $5.4M prediction. It’s earned $64 million overall.
Annabelle: Creation was fourth with $4 million (I said $3.4M) as it nears the century mark with $96 million.
Wind River rounded out the top five with $3.1 million (I said $3.6M) to bring its total to $24 million.
Lionsgate Films is hoping American Assassin successfully targets action fans when it debuts next weekend. The pic features Maze Runner star Dylan O’Brien as a CIA recruit teamed with a Cold War vet played by Michael Keaton. Sanaa Lathan and Taylor Kitsch costar in this effort from director Michael Cuesta (who last made the Jeremy Renner thriller Kill the Messenger).
The biggest draw here should be Keaton, who’s experienced a genuine career resurgence that began with back to back Best Picture winners Birdman and Spotlight in 2014 and 2015 and continued this summer with his well-received villainous turn in Spider-Man: Homecoming.
Assassin also has the benefit of being the only straight up action pic geared towards a male audience. That said, there is still competition with It‘s second weekend and mother!‘s first.
Reviews (not out at press time) could cause a revision here, but I’ll project Assassin ends up hitting low to possibly mid teens.
American Assassin opening weekend prediction: $13.3 million
Darren Aronofsky’s mother! received quite the splashy debut at the Venice Film Festival over the weekend and stateside audiences will render their verdict on September 15th. Oscar winners Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem headline the psychological horror thriller with a supporting cast including Ed Harris, Michelle Pfeiffer, Kristin Wiig, and Domhnall Gleeson.
Critical reaction from mother! has been something to witness, with some reviews labeling it a masterwork from the Requiem for a Dream and Black Swan auteur. Other notices haven’t gone that far, but all seem to agree it will push the audience’s buttons with its out there approach. The pic stands at 82% on Rotten Tomatoes currently.
Here are the pluses as I see them when it comes to potential box office performance. First, it’s headlined by Jennifer Lawrence and that should be a draw for some. Second, the buzz surrounding it could create a “you have to witness this thing” for yourself type of vibe.
One minus is a considerable one. The It factor. The Stephen King adaptation is riding its own higher decibel wave of chatter and should still be garnering big grosses in its sophomore weekend. It could easily divert some moviegoers away from this.
I’ll predict mother! begins with a low to mid teens output and it’ll be fascinating to see how it progresses or regresses from there (its Cinemascore rating could be an interesting indicator).
The fall box office officially is underway this weekend and it can’t come soon enough after a truly lackluster end to the summer season. This season is looking to kick off in record breaking fashion with the release of Stephen King adapted horror pic It as well as the Reese Witherspoon rom com Home Again. You can read my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:
Riding a wave of solid buzz coupled with its eerie TV spots and trailers, It is shaping up to be an event film. My estimate easily makes it the highest September debut of all time and biggest horror opening in history.
Home Again should easily be #2 considering the extreme lack of competition, but the question is how effective it will be as counter programming for female audiences. I have it just under a teens debut as it hopes to leg out in subsequent weekends.
The rest of the top five will be filled with holdovers. The Hitman’s Bodyguard three week reign on top will be over. Last weekend’s #2 Annabelle: Creation may suffer the largest decline because of the It factor.
And with that, my top 5 predictions for the weekend:
Predicted Gross: $65.4 million
2. Home Again
Predicted Gross: $11.3 million
Predicted Gross: $5.4 million (representing a drop of 48%)
Predicted Gross: $3.6 million (representing a drop of 43%)
5. Annabelle: Creation
Predicted Gross: $3.5 million (representing a drop of 54%)
Box Office Results (September 1-4)
As anticipated, the summer movie season closed with a whimper. That said, most of the holdovers help up better than my estimates while two newcomers couldn’t manage to find an audience. Even though my forecasts were low, this was still the weakest Labor Day frame in 17 years.
The Hitman’s Bodyguard placed first for the third weekend in a row with $13.2 million, managing to easily surpass my $8.9M projection. It ends its run in first place with $57 million total.
Annballe: Creation was second with $9.1 million – topping my meager $5.7M estimate for a tally of $90 million.
WindRiver continued a laudible run, climbing to third with $7.8 million (I was under with $5.1M). It’s made $20 million thus far.
Animated Leap! was fourth with $6.2 million (I said $5.4M) to see its total jump to $12 million.
Dunkirk rounded out the top five with $5.5 million, ahead of my $4.2M prediction. The Oscar hopeful has amassed $180 million.
Aforementioned newbies both bombed. Latin comedy HazloComoHombre earned a measly $1.4 million (I went higher with $3.5M). Long delayed Alicia Vikander period piece TulipFever fared even worse at $1.3 million (I predicted $1.9M). Those debuts were good for 22nd and 24th place, respectively. Ouch.