Bruce Willis is back on the big screen next weekend with Death Wish, a remake of the 1974 action pic that starred Charles Bronson. Coming from director Eli Roth, the pic costars Elisabeth Shue, Vincent D’Onofrio, Dean Norris, Kimberly Elise, and Mike Epps.
Willis will be in full vigilante mode and those familiar with Death Wish know it spawned numerous sequels of highly questionable quality. The star of the proceedings has been a bit of a stranger to multiplexes in recent years as many of his films have gone the direct to VOD route.
Competition is certainly there with Jennifer Lawrence’s Red Sparrow debuting against it and also making a play for R rated genre fans. That said, if Den of Thieves could pull in $15.2 million in January, I believe this could put up fairly similar numbers.
Death Wish opening weekend prediction: $14.4 million
Red Sparrow, out next Friday, reunites Jennifer Lawrence with her director for the last three Hunger Games installments Francis Lawrence. The spy thriller casts the star as a Russian spy with a supporting cast that includes Joel Edgerton, Matthew Schoenaerts, Charlotte Rampling, Jeremy Irons, and Mary-Louise Parker.
The 20th Century Fox release was originally scheduled for November of last year before the March push back. Reviews have been a bit mixed as it stands at 63% on Rotten Tomatoes at press time.
Lawrence has certainly had her share of massive hits. She’s also had some under performers as of late, including Passengers and mother! Competition is a factor here. Black Panther should still be ruling the charts and Death Wish with Bruce Willis opens directly against it and will try to capture the attention of actions fans.
I could see Red Sparrow performing similarly to another recent female led spy flick, last summer’s Atomic Blonde with Charlize Theron. It opened to $18.2 million. I’ll put this just a touch higher due to Lawrence’s drawing power, but still under $20 million.
Red Sparrow opening weekend prediction: $19.6 million
The domination of Black Panther should continue at the box office in full force this weekend, but we do have some new titles debuting. The Jason Bateman/Rachel McAdams comedy Game Night and Natalie Portman led sci-fi thriller Annihilation hit screens and you can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:
There’s also Every Day, a romantic drama based on a YA novel that’s rolling out on roughly 1650 screens. It seems to be flying pretty far under the radar and I didn’t do an individual post on it. I’ll estimate it only generates $2.9 million in sales.
As for the more high-profile newbies, Game Night appears poised for a second place showing. Annihilation is more of a question mark in my mind. Depending on the drop that Peter Rabbit experiences in its third weekend, it could be third or fourth with Fifty Shades Freed rounding out the top five.
Black Panther will easily rule the charts after its historic and record breaking premiere (more on that below). The Marvel phenomenon could top $100 million in its sophomore frame and that would put it fourth all time as far as #2 weekends go. That said, it pretty much blew away all expectations over the long weekend so maybe it gets to over $100 million.
And with that, my top 5 predictions for the weekend:
1. Black Panther
Predicted Gross: $101.8 million
2. Game Night
Predicted Gross: $16.3 million
3. Peter Rabbit
Predicted Gross: $11.6 million
Predicted Gross: $10.4 million
5. Fifty Shades Freed
Predicted Gross: $6.9 million
Box Office Results (February 16-19)
It was an absolutely incredible debut for Black Panther as the critically acclaimed comic book adaptation smashed the February record and then some. Panther took in $242.1 million over the President’s Day frame, blasting past my $193.8 million estimate. Deadpool was the previous February high at $152 million. Its Friday to Sunday haul of $202 million gave it the fifth largest domestic opening of all time – right behind MCU counterpart The Avengers. Its Monday gross of $40.1 million stands as the highest Monday gross of all time – just edging out Star Wars: The Force Awakens by a few thousand bucks. With an A+ Cinemascore grade, look for Panther to continue its run for the ages into the next several weekends.
Peter Rabbit stayed put in the runner-up position with $23.3 million, hopping a touch over my $20.9 million prediction for a two-week tally of $54 million.
Fifty Shades Freed dropped to third with $19.4 million, a bit ahead of my $17 million estimate. In its two weeks of release, the threequel has taken in $78 million.
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle took the four spot with $10 million, right in line with my $9.6 million projection for $379 million overall.
The 15:17 to Paris rounded out the top five with $8.9 million (I said $7.9 million) for $26 million thus far.
Stop-motion animated feature Early Man, despite mostly solid reviews, didn’t connect with family audiences. The pic opened in seventh with only $4.2 million compared to my prediction of $5.7 million.
Lastly, the Biblical drama Samson made no impact with moviegoers with just $2.2 million, not even matching my $3.1 million forecast.
Jason Bateman and Rachel McAdams are a couple whose night of innocent fun goes horribly wrong in the comedy Game Night, opening next Friday. From John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein, the guys behind Horrible Bosses and the 2015 Vacation reboot, the pic costars Kyle Chandler, Billy Magnussen, Michael C. Hall, Jesse Plemons, and Jeffrey Wright.
Night could manage to appeal to moviegoers looking for a straight comedy in the midst of other genre fare in the marketplace. Black Panther will certainly being tearing up competition in weekend #2 and Annihilation is also out there for sci-fi fans. As far as movies reaching for the funny bone, this stands alone.
I could envision Game Night performing similarly to recent Bateman outings like Horrible Bosses 2 and Office Christmas Party. That would put it in the mid teens range for its start.
Game Night opening weekend prediction: $16.3 million
Blogger’s Note part 2 (02/20): I am once again revising my estimate. Now to $10.4 million
Blogger’s Note (02/15): I’m losing faith a bit for Annihilation debut. Revising down from $14.4 million to $12.4 million
Three years ago, screenwriter Alex Garland made his directorial debut with the acclaimed sci-fi pic Ex Machina, which garnered an Original Screenplay Oscar nomination and won for Visual Effects. Next Friday, his sophomore effort Annihilation debuts. Based on the novel from James VanderMeer, Natalie Portman stars in the $55 million production combining sci-fi, horror, and action elements. Costars include Jennifer Jason Leigh, Gina Rodriguez, Tessa Thompson, and Machina lead Oscar Isaac.
While Annihilation is hitting theaters in the U.S., Canada, and China, it’s slated to roll out on Netflix in other international markets. Early critical buzz is pretty solid so far, but it could struggle to break out stateside. Audiences are likely to still be flocking to Black Panther, which will be in its second weekend of release (and doing its own annihilation of competitors).
Fans of Machina, the genre, and Portman may be enough to get this between $10 million on the low end and $15 million on the high end. I’ll project roughly in the lower end of that range.
Annihilation opening weekend prediction: $10.4 million
Blogger’s Note Part II (02/15): And my Panther estimate continues to go up. Now at $193.8 million
Blogger’s Note (02/15): On the eve of their premieres, I’m making the following adjustments: revising Panther up from $168.8M to $178.8M; Early Man from $5.4M to $5.7M; and Samson from $2.2M to $3.1M.
It should be a commanding weekend for Marvel’s Black Panther as it opens over President’s Day in what could be a record-breaking February debut. We also have the stop-motion animated feature Early Man premiering. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:
Panther sprints into theaters with red hot word-of-mouth and sizzling reviews. The film appears to have entered into true event picture territory and it has sky high expectations. In order to blast through the current February record, it would need to eclipse Deadpool from two years ago, which also opened over the four-day POTUS frame. That movie earned $132 million from Friday to Sunday and $152 million when including Monday. My Panther estimate has Chadwick Boseman and company exceeding that.
I’m not expecting much from Early Man, which will experience severe competition from the second weekend of Peter Rabbit (likely to remain #2) and all the kiddos flocking to Panther. My $5.7 million forecast for it puts it outside the top 5.
I didn’t do an individual prediction post for Samson, a Biblical drama from Pure Flix that’s slated to open on around 1200 screens. I’ve got it pegged at just $3.1 million.
As mentioned, I see Rabbit retaining the number two spot while Fifty Shades Freed seems likely to drop to third. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle and The 15:17 to Paris should round out the top five.
And with that, my top 5 predictions for the four-day holiday weekend:
1. Black Panther
Predicted Gross: $193.8 million
2. Peter Rabbit
Predicted Gross: $20.9 million
3. Fifty Shades Freed
Predicted Gross: $17 million
4. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Predicted Gross: $9.6 million
5. The 15:17 to Paris
Predicted Gross: $7.9 million
Box Office Results (February 9-11)
Fifty Shades Freed closed out the franchise this weekend with the lowest debut of the three features, as anticipated. The final pairing of Anastasia and Christian took in $38.5 million, right on target with my $38.4 million estimate. The good news for Fifty? Its total this weekend including international sales brought the series overall to a billion dollars worldwide.
Peter Rabbit hopped into the second position with a strong $25 million, eclipsing my $18.7 million prediction. The family friendly tale (or tail if you will) looks to continue its impressive grosses in its sophomore frame where it should experience a smallish dip.
Clint Eastwood’s true-life terrorism drama The 15:17 to Paris opened in third to a middling $12.5 million, just below my $13.1 million projection. Mostly negative reviews likely didn’t help.
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle was fourth with $10 million (I was lower at $8.6 million) for a grand tally of $365 million.
The Greatest Showman rounded out the top five with $6.4 million (I was in line with my $6.3 million forecast) for $146 million total.
StudioCanal is hoping family audiences will wish to travel to the Stone Age when their stop-motion animated tale Early Man debuts next weekend. Directed by Nick Park, maker of Chicken Run and numerous Wallace & Gromit efforts, the pic features the voices of Eddie Redmayne, Tom Hiddleston, Maisie Williams, and Timothy Spall.
Expected to debut on approximately 2200 screens at press time, Early Man could have trouble finding its intended audience. There is direct competition in the form of the second weekend of Peter Rabbit. Also Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle should still be making some dough. Most importantly, plenty of kids will be preoccupied with what should be a massive opening for Black Panther.
I’ll project Early Man struggles in its four-day Presidents Day weekend roll out.
Early Man opening weekend prediction: $5.7 million (Friday to Monday estimate)
Blogger’s Note Part II (02/15): For the second time today, my Panther prediction is going up. Now at $193.8M
Blogger’s Note (02/15): On the eve of its premiere, I am revising my Panther estimate up by $10 million – from $168.8M to $178.8M
Marvel Studios is back in business next Friday and it’s likely to be a massive cause of celebration for the studio when BlackPanther opens. Rolling out over the four-day Presidents Day holiday weekend, Chadwick Boseman plays the title character who we first saw in 2016’s CaptainAmerica: CivilWar. Ryan Coogler, who helmed the acclaimed Creed, directs. Costars include Creed himself, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Martin Freeman, Daniel Kaluuya, Letitia Wright, Forest Whitaker, Angela Bassett, Winston Duke, Sterling K. Brown, and Andy Serkis.
The reported $200 million has been garnering buzz for some time and it’s reaching a fever pitch. Reviews were released today and it sits at 100% on Rotten Tomatoes. Earlier today, I wrote a post about its chances at Oscar attention, which I believe to be quite real (even considering the extremely early release date on the calendar):
Two years ago on this same weekend, Deadpool rode a similar wave of sizzling word of mouth to a $152 million opening, which is the current record for February. BlackPanther could be poised to top it with a more friendly PG-13 rating and the vaunted Disney marketing machine behind it.
I’ll project Panther sprints to a new record for the month and jump starts yet another franchise bonanza for the MCU.
BlackPanther opening weekend prediction: $193.8 million (Friday to Monday estimate)
After a sluggish frame to start the month of February, things should be looking up this weekend as three higher profile titles debut: threequel Fifty Shades Freed, animated/live-action pic Peter Rabbit, and Clint Eastwood’s true-life terrorism drama The 15:17 to Paris. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:
As I see it, the trio of newcomers should rather easily populate numbers 1-3 with Freed leading the charge, albeit with less dollars coming in than either of its predecessors. Rabbit should sit in the two spot with 15:17 third.
That means Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle should fall to fourth and I’ll project The Greatest Showman remains in the top five with its continued smallish declines.
And with that, my top 5 projections for the weekend:
1. Fifty Shades Freed
Predicted Gross: $38.4 million
2. Peter Rabbit
Predicted Gross: $18.7 million
3. The 15:17 to Paris
Predicted Gross: $13.1 million
4. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Predicted Gross: $8.6 million
5. The Greatest Showman
Predicted Gross: $6.3 million
Box Office Results (February 2-4)
In a quiet Super Bowl weekend, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle swung back into the top spot with $10.9 million, a bit below my $12.4 million forecast. The mega hit has amassed $352 million overall.
Maze Runner: The Death Cure dropped to second with $10.4 million, in line with my $10.6 million projection for a two-week tally of $40 million.
The weekend’s only newcomer, Helen Mirren horror pic Winchester, debuted in third to a mediocre $9.3 million. I was close with $9.1 million. It did manage to garner the best per screen average of the top five. That said, look for it to drop big next weekend.
The Greatest Showman was fourth with $7.6 million (I said $7.9 million) for $137 million total.
The Post was fifth and I incorrectly had it outside the top 5. It made $5.2 million and it stands at $67 million.
Hostiles was sixth at $5.1 million (I said $5.8 million) for $20 million in sales.
Blogger’s Note (02/08): I am revising my prediction from $15.1 million to $13.1 million
Recounting the 2015 attempted train attack en route to France’s capital city, Clint Eastwood’s The15:17toParis hits theaters next weekend. The true life thriller uses the interesting tactic of having the real life heroes that thwarted the attack (Anthony Sadler, Alek Skarlatos, and Spencer Stone) playing themselves. They’re alongside familiar actors including Jenna Fischer, Judy Greer, and Jaleel White (known to you and I as Urkel from TV’s “Family Matters”).
Just over three years ago, Mr. Eastwood found his greatest box office success with AmericanSniper. This pic isn’t expected to gross anywhere near that, but it could manage to bring in an older audience who will have little to do with the two competitors debuting against it (FiftyShadesFreed and PeterRabbit).
I could see 15:17 opening right around its title numbers and comparable to what 12Strong made out of the gate just a couple weeks ago.
The15:17toParis opening weekend prediction: $13.1 million