It might be a satire of romantic comedies, but Warner Bros is hoping Isn’tItRomantic brings in a Valentine’s and President’s Day crowd when it opens this Wednesday. Rebel Wilson plays a lovey dovey denier who finds herself in a rom com cinematic universe after being knocked out. Liam Hemsworth, Adam Devine, and Priyanka Chopra are in the supporting cast. Todd Strauss-Schulson directs.
As mentioned, Romantic will look for a female crowd that hopefully bring their dates. Wilson is no stranger to this holiday frame. Three years ago, she costarred in HowtoBeSingle and it grossed nearly $20 million for its long weekend start (Valentine’s Day fell on Sunday that year).
With Wednesday and Thursday (the 14th) factored in, this will likely make under that figure for the four-day frame and could even struggle to top $20 million for the six-day earnings. I’ll say it manages to just top it.
Isn’tItRomantic opening weekend prediction: $14.3 million (Friday to Monday); $20.7 million (Wednesday to Monday)
We have seen numerous takes on the raunchy wedding comedy and MikeandDaveNeedWeddingDates is, well, another one. A grouping of actors who’ve done the genre in considerably better work before on film and television, the pic is stale and uninspired. It even wastes its gorgeous Hawaiian locale in a way that ForgettingSarahMarshall didn’t.
The title characters are actual people – the Stangle Brothers – whose life story inspired the events that take place here. Dave (Zac Efron) and Mike (Adam DeVine) lead an aimless and hard partying existence while running a liquor business. We’re not really shown many of their wild exploits. In fact, Dave seems like a somewhat well-adjusted and dull dude. Mike, with DeVine’s performance unsuccessfully attempting to ape a younger Jack Black, is more of an annoyance.
Brothers Stangle are called in by mom and dad when their little sister Jeanie (the coolly named Sugar Lyn Beard) is about to tie the knot. They’re asked to bring dates with the idea that they’ll be less prone to make a scene. So they put out an ad on social media which catches fire, culminating with appearing on Wendy Williams’s show.
When they finally choose their matches, it’s the equally aimless and wild duo of Alice (Anna Kendrick) and Tatiana (Aubrey Plaza). The girls are in it for the free vacay with Alice having the additional motivation of getting over recently being left at the altar. They try to act like good girls but bad things happen across the ocean.
What follows is a buffet of sex and drugs humor that does precious little to differentiate itself from other bawdy buffets we’ve been served up before. One central theme – “Hey, these gals are just as self-absorbed as the dudes!” – doesn’t add much. Like their male counterparts, Kendrick and Plaza have shined in superior material but can’t elevate this stuff. I don’t know what actually occurred or not in this story that bills itself as “sort of” true. I do know that I probably wouldn’t have wanted to hang with the real people and know for sure there’s not enough laughter in the 99 minutes watching others play them.
20th Century Fox’s Ice Age franchise keeps rolling along as Collision Course glides into theaters next weekend. It is the fifth in the series that began in 2002 and the four previous pictures have performed pleasingly. Predecessor Continental Drift was the lowest grosser thus far, but not by much with a $46 million opening and $161 million overall take. 2009’s Dawn of the Dinosaurs was the series high point with $196 million.
Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary, Queen Latifah, Jennifer Lopez, and Simon Pegg (pulling double duty over the weekend with Star Trek Beyond) all return for their voice over work with Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Adam Devine, and Nick Offerman joining the party.
Animals and animation have been a potent box office combo in 2016 and that does mean competition as The Secret Life of Pets should still be raking it in in weekend #3. That could dent Collision Course a bit and I do expect it to post the lowest opening weekend of the franchise so far by a rather substantial margin.
Ice Age: Collision Course opening weekend prediction: $28.3 million
Next Friday brings us Zac Efron’s third raunchy comedy of the year after Dirty Grandpa and Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising. Neither one of them did particularly well and I’m not convinced that will change here with Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates. The R rated rom com costars Adam DeVine and Anna Kendrick (who made both Pitch Perfect features together) and Audrey Plaza (seen with Efron in Dirty Grandpa).
The pic could benefit from really being the only straight up comedy out there in the marketplace besides Central Intelligence (which will be winding down in weekend #4). Having said that, its best hope might be falling somewhere in between Neighbors 2‘s $21 million opening and Grandpa‘s $11 million start. The summer release slot should at least get it slightly above the latter, which premiered in the January dead zone. I expect a so-so debut while Mike and Dave hope for a more happily ever after existence on the small screen.
Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates opening weekend prediction: $13.5 million
For my The Secret Life of Pets prediction, click here:
This Friday, Anne Hathaway and Robert De Niro headline the workplace comedy The Intern and in a sea of male driven titles like Black Mass and Everest, this will attempt to break through to a more female audience. It may succeed.
The pic comes from director Nancy Meyers, whose resume includes hits like What Women Want, Something’s Gotta Give and It’s Complicated. It marks Hathaway’s return to a genre where she’s seen successes like The Devil Wears Prada. The Intern has been heavily marketed and is probably mostly critic proof (reviews have yet to be released at press time).
While the film will almost certainly have to settle for the runner up spot behind animated kiddie sequel Hotel Transylvania 2, I believe The Intern could potentially debut above $20 million. However, my prediction puts it a bit under that.
The Intern opening weekend prediction: $19 million
For my Hotel Transylvania 2 prediction, click here: