Entertainment Studios is hoping that family audiences warm to their animated comedy Arctic Dogs next weekend. Budgeted at around $50 million, it risks being a costly flop. From director Aaron Woodley, Dogs voice cast includes Jeremy Renner (who’s been experiencing bad publicity involved with his personal life), Heidi Klum, James Franco, John Cleese, Omar Sy, Michael Madsen, Laurie Holden, Anjelica Huston, and Alec Baldwin (pulling double duty with new releases along with Motherless Brooklyn).
The pic marks the first animated effort from the relatively new studio, which has only found success with its 47 Meters Down shark tales. I suspect they won’t find much profitability with these talking animals.
Double digits seems like an impossibility here and it could struggle to reach $5 million.
Arctic Dogs opening weekend prediction: $4.5 million
For my Terminator: Dark Fate prediction, click here:
Two years after the original turned into an unanticipated summer success, shark sequel 47MetersDown: Uncaged is unlocked in theaters next weekend. While director Johannes Roberts is back behind the camera, a whole new cast of potential chum is present. That includes Sophie Nelisse, Corinne Foxx (daughter of Jamie), Brianne Tju, Sistine Stallone (daughter of Sly), John Corbett, and Nia Long. Original star Mandy Moore is off somewhere and hopefully dry.
In June 2017, the first Meters had an interesting journey to the big screen. A measly $5 million production, it was originally slated to be a VOD only release. After it was acquired by Entertainment Studios and perhaps assisted by Moore’s exposure in the hit series “This Is Us”, it was put into multiplexes and had an $11.2 million debut. Doubling its price tag out of the gate, it legged out quite well for its genre and ended up at $44 million.
The follow-up won’t be able to surprise everyone and come out of nowhere. Expectations are that it should at least match the start of its predecessor. I’ll project that it falls short of that by around a million.
47MetersDown: Uncaged opening weekend prediction: $10.2 million
For my TheAngryBirdsMovie2 prediction, click here:
Kaya Scodelario and Barry Pepper might be the two human headlining actors in Crawl, but it’s a bunch of murderous alligators that are the star attraction. The horror pic takes place after a hurricane with the reptiles terrorizing survivors. Alexandre Aja directs.
Coproduced by Sam Raimi, Crawl would love to bring in the kind of coin that recent shark tales have brought in over recent summers. 2016’s TheShallows made around $16 million for its start and the following year’s 47MetersDown took in just over $11 million.
With a minor reported $17 million budget, Crawl appears set to be a profitable venture for distributor Paramount. I’ll say this manages to come close to its price tag in its first three days of release.
Blogger’s Note (08/08/18): On the eve of its premiere, I am bumping my estimate up from $19.7 million to $22.7 million
The second weekend of August is one that Warner Bros hopes is their Shark Week when The Meg opens. Focused on a group of scientists tracking a 75-foot creature sporting massive jaws, the film stars Jason Statham, Li Bingbing, Rainn Wilson, Ruby Rose, Winston Chao, and Cliff Curtis. Jon Turteltaub, whose had a lengthy directorial career including the National Treasure pics, is behind the camera.
Other than the giant shark itself, the most eye-popping thing about The Meg is its reported $150 million budget. This is an American/Chinese co-production and it better hope for generous earnings overseas.
As for its stateside expectations, it can be dangerous to underestimate audiences shark love. Two summers ago, The Shallows debuted to a better than anticipated $16.8 million. Last summer, 47 Meters Down (which was originally slated for a TV premiere) took in $11.2 million for its start.
There’s always breakout potential in this genre, but I’m looking at The Meg managing to hit Shallows numbers and a bit more.
The relatively new Entertainment Studios is hoping for another sleeper hit next weekend when The Hurricane Heist hits theaters. The disaster crime flick comes from director Rob Cohen (best known for making the original The Fast and the Furious and xXx) and centers on a group of bank robbers trying to pull off a job during a Category 5 hurricane. The cast includes Toby Kebbell, Maggie Grace, Ryan Kwanten, Melissa Bolona, and Ralph Ineson.
Made for a reported $35 million, Heist‘s best hope is that it will make some cash based on its concept (star power will not be a factor). There is plenty of competition out there as Red Sparrow and Death Wish will be in their sophomore frames and The Strangers: Prey at Night opens against it looking for similar audience members.
Last summer, the studio had an unexpected hit with the shark tale 47 Meters Down. It debuted to $11.2 million with a $44 million overall domestic haul. Ironically, that film’s director is behind the camera with The Strangers sequel it’s competing with. Meters had the advantage of having a shark in it (maybe one of the bank robbers should have been a great white) so I don’t really see Heist reaching its gross.
Interestingly, I keep going back to last fall’s Geostorm as an example of a disaster pic that outperformed expectations. That critically drubbed pic managed to gross $13.7 million out of the gate. Could Hurricane somehow blow away expectations? I doubt it.
For now, I’ll say this doesn’t reach double digits, but it could make more than my current expectations.
The Hurricane Heist opening weekend prediction: $5.6 million
It’s been nearly a decade since Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman were terrorized by sadistic home invaders in TheStrangers. The horror flick turned into an unexpected hit early in the summer of 2008 with a $20 million opening and $52 million overall domestic gross.
With a new cast and director in tow, long gestating sequel TheStrangers: PreyatNight enters theaters next weekend. Johannes Roberts, who directed his own surprise hit 47MetersDown just last summer, is behind the camera with a cast led by Christina Hendricks and Martin Henderson.
The question here is rather simple: will audiences have enough of a memory or fondness for the original to turn up? The horror genre has certainly seen its share of impressive performers lately and it could potentially fill the market niche.
That said, I’m skeptical. I’ll estimate that Prey earns less than half of what its predecessor accomplished some 10 years ago.
TheStrangers: PreyatNight opening weekend prediction: $7.9 million
It’s a busy weekend ahead as Despicable Me 3 looks to dominate the box office as the Will Ferrell comedy The House and critically acclaimed musical comedy crime thriller Baby Driver are out as well. There’s also a significant theater expansion for Sofia Coppola’s Civil War dramatic thriller The Beguiled. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on all four here:
As I see it, Illumination Entertainment’s Despicable threequel will not reach the heights of its spin-off predecessor Minions, which opened to $115M two summers ago.I’m looking at a return in the high 80s.
The House appears primed for a second place debut (barely) now that Transformers: The Last Knight didn’t fare so well (more on that below). I have a strange suspicion that it could under perform, but it’s got Will Ferrell and is the only real straight up comedy out there so I’m going late teens.
Baby Driver (which rolls out early on Wednesday) could absolutely be a wild card with some breakout potential. It’s got great buzz among the cinephile community, but I’m not sure how much that will translate to robust earnings out of the gate. I have it slated for sixth.
The Beguiled had a terrific limited debut this past weekend and its 550 screen count has me estimating a $3.8M gross.
Holdover action should see a precipitous drop for Transformers with Wonder Woman likely having a smaller decline than Cars 3 considering the animated competition. The Last Knight could even be in danger of slipping to fourth or fifth if holds for the other two aren’t quite as pronounced as my prognoses.
And with that, let’s do a top 6 estimates:
1. Despicable Me 3
Predicted Gross: $88.7 million
2. Transformers: The Last Knight
Predicted Gross: $17.4 million (representing a drop of 61%)
3. Wonder Woman
Predicted Gross: $14.5 million (representing a drop of 42%)
Predicted Gross: $13.8 million
5. Cars 3
Predicted Gross: $12.1 million (representing a drop of 49%)
6. Baby Driver
Predicted Gross: $10.9 million (Friday to Sunday estimate), $15.8 million (Wednesday to Sunday)
Box Office Results (June 23-25)
Transformers: The Last Knight, the fifth in the decade long franchise, posted the worst stateside numbers for the series thus far. The critically panned pic earned $44.6 million over the traditional Friday to Sunday weekend and $68.4 million since its Wednesday debut. That’s well below my respective estimates of $57.8M and $81.5M. The previous Transformers low belonged to the 2007 original, which made $70 million for its start. Lucky for Paramount, these flicks still are doing solid business overseas.
There was a photo finish for second place as WonderWoman made $24.9 million for the runner-up spot. That’s a bit below my $27.6M projection and the DC title has banked $318 million. Cars3 went from first to third at $24 million and I forecasted more with $30M. The Pixar sequel stands at $98 million.
Shark tale 47 Meters Down held up stronger in its sophomore weekend than I figured. Its $7 million was good for fourth place and I incorrectly had it outside my projected top 5.
The Mummy was fifth with $6 million, under my $7.4M estimate for a $68 million so far. At this point, it looks assured the Tom Cruise pic will not reach $100M domestically and probably earn around $80M.
Finally, Tupac biopic All Eyez on Me had a massive drop in weekend #2, falling to sixth with $5.8 million (I was higher with $8.4M). That’s a 78% plummet and it’s earned $38 million total.
And that does it for now, folks! I’ll be back with next week’s predictions when Spider-Man: Homecoming swings into multiplexes.