February 10-12 Box Office Predictions

Channing Tatum sashays back into multiplexes in his star making role with threequel Magic Mike’s Last Dance while Titanic re-releases on the occasion of its 25th anniversary. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on them here:

In what could be considered an upset, I have Titanic edging Mike for the top spot. Here’s why. There are reports that the latter is only releasing on approximately 1500 screens. If that holds true, it would significantly impact its earning power. When I assumed Mr. Tatum would arrive in the typical 3000 venues, I had it making just under $18 million. I now have it notably under that projection.

That may clear the way for the Titanic re-release to be #1 (giving James Cameron the first place picture in eight out of the past nine weekends). Valentine’s Day audiences and the nostalgia factor could get it there.

As for holdovers, M. Night Shyamalan’s Knock at the Cabin definitely came in at the lower end of its anticipated range (more on that below). I believe it could plummet from first to fifth with 80 for Brady and Avatar: The Way of Water each slipping only one spot. Cabin might even fall outside of the high five depending on the eighth frame dip for Puss in Boots: The Last Wish.

Here’s how I see the top 6 playing out:

1. Titanic 25th Anniversary

Predicted Gross: $11.6 million

2. Magic Mike’s Last Dance

Predicted Gross: $10.7 million

3. 80 for Brady

Predicted Gross: $8.1 million

4. Avatar: The Way of Water

Predicted Gross: $7.5 million

5. Knock at the Cabin

Predicted Gross: $5.9 million

6. Puss in Boots: The Last Wish

Predicted Gross: $5.6 million

Box Office Results (February 3-5)

As mentioned, Knock at the Cabin had a fairly soft entry on the charts with $14.1 million. While it managed to knock Avatar from its seven-week reign on the throne, it fell far under my $23.6 million forecast. The glass half full? It cost a meager $20 million to make. The glass half empty? With a C Cinemascore grade, I foresee a sophomore plummet close to 60%. In the summer of 2021, Shyamalan’s predecessor Old managed to top Cabin with just under $17 million. Simply put, this should’ve done more considering it had less competition and better reviews.

80 for Brady had a respectable start in second with $12.7 million. Released a day after Tom Brady announced his retirement (again), the legend packed octogenarian comedy couldn’t match my $15.5 million take. It will hope for smallish declines in the weekends ahead.

Avatar: The Way of Water was third with $11.3 million, in line with my $11.8 million prediction. After its eighth outing, the gargantuan tally grew to $636 million.

Fourth place belonged to Puss in Boots: The Last Wish with $7.8 million (I said $8.9 million) for an impressive $151 million after seven weeks.

I incorrectly had the concert pic BTS: Yet to Come in Cinemas outside of the top five with no projection. It was fifth with $5.1 million.

A Man Called Otto was sixth with $4.3 million compared to my $4.8 million. The gross is a solid $53 million.

Finally, while I’m in predictin’ mode – Eagles 38, Chiefs 24. That’s all for now, folks! Until next time…

Titanic 25th Anniversary Box Office Prediction

On February 10th, we will see if audiences are ready to go back to Titanic. The James Cameron romance pic/disaster flick is being re-released on the occasion of its 25th anniversary. This is just as Avatar: The Way of Water wraps up its seven-week #1 domestic stand with $2 billion+ worldwide run at multiplexes.

The movie that made Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet icons currently stands as the 8th largest stateside earner in history. At the time of its release, it vaulted to first place. With $659 million overall (and that includes some previous re-releases), it could jump a spot over Avengers: Infinity War ($678 million). Worldwide it is #3 ($2.2 billion) with Water ($2.1 billion) hot on its heels. And, yes, Cameron does now have three of the four all-time global grossers with Avatar ($2.8 billion) atop that chart.

Speaking of the original Avatar, it was put back in theaters last September a few months before the sequel was unleashed. It made $10.5 million in its first frame of re-issuance. I could see Titanic matching or maybe slightly exceeding that figure.

Titanic 25th Anniversary opening weekend prediction: $11.6 million

For my Magic Mike’s Last Dance prediction, click here:

Magic Mike’s Last Dance Box Office Prediction

**Blogger’s Update (02/03): There are reports that the film is only releasing on around 1500 screens. Therefore I am revising my estimate down significantly from $17.7M to $10.7M. If the theater count changes, I will update accordingly.

A decade after they turned a meagerly budgeted $7 million dramedy into a $100M+ hit, Magic Mike’s Last Dance is the third iteration (or gyration) of Steven Soderbergh and Channing Tatum’s franchise. The former returns to direct after sitting out 2015’s sequel Magic Mike XXL after helming the 2012 original. The latter is back in the role that turned him into a superstar. His costars from the first two are MIA, but Salma Hayek Pinault, Ayub Khan Din, and Caitlin Gerard join the fun.

After being absent onscreen for several years, Tatum returned to multiplexes in 2022 with his directorial debut Dog ($61 million domestic gross) and The Lost City alongside Sandra Bullock ($105 million stateside). Last Dance was originally slated for an HBO Max premiere before Warner Bros opted for the theatrical output.

It’s worth noting that Magic Mike XXL couldn’t match part 1. The 2012 model made $113 million. XXL generated half of that with $66 million. The diminishing returns could continue unless female moviegoers are feeling especially nostalgic. That’s possible, but I’m skeptical. Some of that demographic may opt for the Titanic re-release instead. Low teens is probably the floor and I don’t believe this surpasses $20 million out of the gate.

Magic Mike’s Last Dance opening weekend prediction: $10.7 million

For my Titanic 25th Anniversary prediction, click here:

February 3-5 Box Office Predictions

**Blogger’s Update (02/01): I am adding a title to the top 5 that I previously didn’t have on Monday when I did my initial projections. The Chosen: Season 3 Finale is playing on over 2000 screens. As you may recall, the season premiere grossed nearly $9 million in December out of the gate. I’ll say the finale generates a little more than that and could challenge Avatar for the 3 spot. Changes are reflected below.

The seven-week reign of Avatar: The Way of Water at #1 should end in its 8th outing as February dawns at the box office. M. Night Shyamalan’s latest thriller Knock at the Cabin and the octogenarian comedy 80 for Brady debut and look to place 1-2. My detailed prediction posts on them can be found here:

Beginning with 2017’s Split, Shyamalan experienced a career resurgence that could carry Cabin (generating solid word-of-mouth) to a low to mid 20s start. Getting close to $30 million is not out of the question. That number should be enough to top the charts.

80 for Brady looks to appeal to a female audience and older viewers. A Man Called Otto recently showed the demographic is ready for a return at multiplexes. With a robust marketing campaign and the involvement of Lily Tomlin, Jane Fonda, Sally Field, and Rita Moreno, I could absolutely see it over performing. My current mid teens forecast is worth keeping an eye on before Thursday (meaning it could rise).

As mentioned, Avatar: The Way of Water (while remaining above $10M) should finally relinquish its stranglehold in first. Fellow holdovers Puss in Boots: The Last Wish and A Man Called Otto should round out the top five and here’s how I see it looking:

1. Knock at the Cabin

Predicted Gross: $23.6 million

2. 80 for Brady

Predicted Gross: $15.5 million

3. Avatar: The Way of Water

Predicted Gross: $11.8 million

4. The Chosen: Season 3 Finale

Predicted Gross: $11 million

5. Puss in Boots: The Last Wish

Predicted Gross: $8.9 million

6. A Man Called Otto

Predicted Gross: $4.8 million

Box Office Results (January 27-29)

Avatar: The Way of Water cruised to a seventh frame atop the charts with $15.9 million (ahead of my $14.3 million take). The domestic haul is $620 million, but the story of the weekend is that it surpassed Star Wars: The Force Awakens to become the fourth largest worldwide grosser in history. That means James Cameron now has three of the top four (with Avatar and Titanic also in the mix).

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish was runner-up with $10.4 million, surpassing my $9.2 million prediction. In six weeks, the animated sequel has amassed $140 million.

The surprise of the weekend was Pathaan, a Hindu language action spectacle that I incorrectly had outside the top five. It was third with $6.8 million and $9.4 million since its Wednesday bow. The PTA of nearly $10k was easily the highest on the charts.

A Man Called Otto was fourth with $6.6 million (in line with my $6 million projection) for $45 million overall.

M3GAN rounded out the top five with $6.2 million (I said $5.8 million) as the campy horror tale is approaching nine figures at $82 million.

Finally, Missing was sixth in its sophomore weekend with $5.6 million, a tad above my $5.1 million call. The ten-day total is $17 million (doubling its reported $7 million budget).

Check out my new podcast at the following link:

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/movies-at-the-speed-of-speculation/id1668006585

And that does it for now, folks! Until next time…

80 for Brady Box Office Prediction

Between Lily Tomlin, Jane Fonda, Rita Moreno, Sally Field, Tom Brady, and Guy Fieri – we have 12 Oscar nominations, 54 Emmy mentions, 38 Golden Globe nods, six Super Bowl championships, and hundreds of trips to Flavortown. All of them appear in 80 for Brady on February 3rd. Kyle Marvin directs the comedy which finds the aforementioned female quartet on a trek to watch the famed QB in the Super Bowl. Other costars include (in addition to Brady and Fieri as themselves) include Billy Porter, Harry Hamlin, Rob Corddry, Alex Moffat, Bob Balaban, and Glynn Turman. Some of Brady’s old teammates, such as Rob Gronkowski, Julian Edelman, and Danny Amendola also turn up.

The Paramount release looks to bring in an older female demographic and sports fans during the weekend between the NFL’s Conference Championships and the game where our leads travel to. Tomlin, Fonda, Moreno, and Field having been hitting the circuit hard in recent weeks to promote. I do believe there’s an opportunity for this to exceed expectations. Low to mid teens is where this likely touches down. That’s in line with what Book Club (also featuring Fonda) accomplished in 2018.

80 for Brady opening weekend prediction: $15.5 million

For my Knock at the Cabin prediction, click here:

Knock at the Cabin Box Office Prediction

Universal Pictures is counting on audiences to take a Knock at the Cabin when it debuts February 3rd. The latest film from M. Night Shyamalan, it’s based on the 2018 novel by Paul G. Tremblay. A thriller blending horror elements, Dave Bautista is a believer in the imminent apocalypse holding a family hostage. Costars include Jonathan Groff, Ben Aldridge, Nikki Amuka-Bird, Kristen Cui, Abby Quinn, and Rupert Grint.

This looks to be the picture to knock Avatar: The Way of Water off its lengthy perch at #1 and should do so with room to spare. Shyamalan, after a career resurgence that kicked into high gear with Split, is one of the few filmmakers whose name can sell tickets (especially in this genre). This is his first R rated title since 2008’s The Happening. His predecessor Old (2021) opened in the summer of 2021 with just under $17 million.

Cabin, with less competition than Old had, should exceed that starting gross. A take of over $20 million is doable.

Knock at the Cabin opening weekend prediction: $23.6 million

For my 80 for Brady prediction, click here:

January 27-29 Box Office Predictions

2023 has gotten off to a pleasing start at the box office, but the last weekend of January should be rather quiet. Horror pic Fear is slated to be a wide release. I haven’t done an individual prediction post on it because I’ve yet to see a theater count. It would be surprising to see it in the top five. At the moment, I’m thinking it’ll be lucky to reach $2 million.

That means the chart should look very similar to this past frame with Avatar: The Way of Water spending a seventh weekend in first (very likely for the final time with Knock at the Cabin and 80 for Brady on deck). It might be the only feature to make over $10 million as I have dropping in the low to mid 30s for a low teens gross.

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish (after a great hold in its 5th life) should stay in second during its sixth. Holdovers A Man Called Otto, M3GAN, and Missing (after a slightly better than anticipated debut) appear poised to populate slots 3-5.

Here’s how I see it playing out:

1. Avatar: The Way of Water

Predicted Gross: $14.3 million

2. Puss in Boots: The Last Wish

Predicted Gross: $9.2 million

3. A Man Called Otto

Predicted Gross: $6 million

4. M3GAN

Predicted Gross: $5.8 million

5. Missing

Predicted Gross: $5.1 million

Box Office Results (January 20-22)

A six-peat greeted Avatar: The Way of Water with a take of $20.1 million, a bit under my $23.9 million forecast. James Cameron’s sequel crossed the $2 billion mark worldwide and neared $600 million domestically at $598 million.

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish is showing its multiple lives as it impressed in second with a mere 18% drop. Earning $11.8 million in its fifth outing (I was lower with $8.7 million), the animated follow-up has amassed $126 million.

M3GAN was third in weekend 3 with $9.7 million, on pace with my $9.5 million projection. The campy horror effort hit $73 million.

Missing, the stand-alone sequel to thriller Searching, found some fans in fourth with $9.1 million, surpassing my $6.8 million prediction. Considering the reported $7 million price tag, this should turn a tidy profit.

A Man Called Otto rounded out the top five at $8.8 million (I said $9.3 million). In its second weekend of wide release, it dipped a commendable 31%.

And that does it for now, folks! Until next time…

Box Office Predictions: Weekend of January 20-22, 2023

After a solid MLK long weekend at the box office, tech thriller Missing (a stand-alone sequel to 2018’s Searching) hopes to keep the 2023 momentum going in multiplexes. You can peruse my detailed prediction post on it here:

As the only new wide release, I’ve got Missing making the top five. However, it may fall under four holdovers. Avatar: The Way of Water should have no trouble staying in first for the sixth frame. The battle for #2 should be far more interesting. If Missing over performs, it could get there.

I’ve got the earnings of M3GAN, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, and A Man Called Otto separated by under a million. All three did well over the holiday. M3GAN is likely to suffer the biggest drop, but I’ve still got it clinging to #2 with Otto right behind and Boots in fourth.

Here’s how I see it looking for your high five:

1. Avatar: The Way of Water

Predicted Gross: $23.9 million

2. M3GAN

Predicted Gross: $9.5 million

3. A Man Called Otto

Predicted Gross: $9.3 million

4. Puss in Boots: The Last Wish

Predicted Gross: $8.7 million

5. Missing

Predicted Gross: $6.8 million

Box Office Results (January 13-16)

Friday the 13th and the rest of the weekend was not unlucky as Avatar: The Way of Water 5-peated wtih $39.8 million. That’s just below my take of $41.2 million as James Cameron’s massive sequel sits at $571 million.

M3GAN held up well in its sophomore frame in second with $21.6 million from Friday to Monday. Ahead of my $18.7 million projection, the campy horror hit is grooving to $60 million thus far.

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish actually increased from the previous weekend in third at $18.9 million (slashing past my $13 million estimate). The animated sequel is now in nine figures with a lively $111 million.

Tom Hanks helped bring in adult moviegoers as A Man Called Otto expanded nationwide with a fourth place gross of $15.4 million (on target with my $15.9 million prediction). With an A Cinemascore grade, look for this to hold up well in the coming weeks. The tally is $21 million and growing.

Gerard Butler’s Plane took off in fifth with a decent $11.8 million (flying higher than my $7.2 million forecast). I suspect a drop at or close to 50% is where this lands next weekend.

Finally, comedic remake House Party did OK considering its lowly 1400 screen count. It was sixth with $4.6 million and that’s more RSVPs than my $3 million guesstimate.

That does it for now, folks! Until next time…

Missing Box Office Prediction

Missing is a sequel in concept to Searching, which turned an enormous profit in 2018. The thriller (out January 20th) takes place solely on a computer screen with different directors and and a fresh cast. Nick Johnson and Will Merrick make their debuts behind the camera after editing Searching. Aneesh Chaganty, helmer of the first, produces. Storm Reid headlines alongside Joaquim de Almeida, Ken Leung, Amy Landecker, Daniel Henney, and Nia Long.

Over four years ago, Searching made $26 million domestically and $75 million worldwide. The important point? It was reportedly made for under $900,000. That was probably the hummus budget for Avengers: Endgame that same year. I haven’t seen a price tag for this follow-up, but I imagine it’s low.

This may not quite make the nearly $8 million that Searching took in over the four-day Labor Day frame. Its overall stateside gross could fall short of its predecessor. If it triples those earnings across the globe, it should still be a success story for Sony.

Missing opening weekend prediction: $6.8 million

January 13-16 Box Office Predictions

Blogger’s Update (01/11): Considering its meager 1500 screen count and scant buzz, I’m revising my House Party prediction down from $6 million to $3 million. That puts it outside of the top 6.

The 2023 box office got off to an impressive start as studios hope the momentum continues over the four-day MLK weekend. A Man Called Otto expands and we have the Gerard Butler action flick Plane and comedy remake House Party landing. You can peruse my individual prediction posts on the trio here:

Otto, while technically not a newcomer, should perform the best of the newbies. It over performed in limited release this past weekend (more on that below) and could even make a run for #2 depending on the sophomore drop for M3GAN.

Speaking of that demented AI doll, a robust and clever marketing campaign propelled the PG-13 flick to a terrific start. Horror titles often experience hefty declines after their opening, but the holiday could mean a high teens (maybe even low 20s) gross is possible.

Neither M3GAN or Otto will prevent Avatar: The Way of Water from making it five in a row atop the charts. I’m thinking it manages high 30s to low 40s as it builds on the already half billion domestic haul.

As for Plane and House Party, I have both falling under double digits and that would leave them in 5th and 6th behind the fourth outing for Puss in Boots: The Last Wish.

Here’s how I see it playing out and remember that these forecasts are for Friday through Monday:

1. Avatar: The Way of Water

Predicted Gross: $41.2 million

2. M3GAN

Predicted Gross: $18.7 million

3. A Man Called Otto

Predicted Gross: $15.9 million

4. Puss in Boots: The Last Wish

Predicted Gross: $13 million

5. Plane

Predicted Gross: $7.2 million

Box Office Results (January 6-8)

As mentioned, it was a healthy kickoff to the new year as Avatar: The Way of Water maintained first position with only a -32 decrease. That’s good for a fourth weekend collection of $45.8 million (beyond my $38.3 million prediction) as it’s amassed $517 million stateside.

M3GAN translated great buzz and sterling reviews to a $30.4 million premiere, dancing past my $24.8 million take. Universal ran a campaign that included memorable trailers and Tik Tok type vids of M3GAN’s crashing Times Square and media interviews. It paid off handsomely.

Universal had the third spot with Puss in Boots: The Last Wish earning $13.5 million, ahead of my $10.2 million projection. The animated sequel is up to $88 million with nine figures on deck.

Maybe grown-ups are ready to return to multiplexes! After plenty of awards bait adult features have disappointed in recent months, A Man Called Otto with Tom Hanks bucked the trend on a still limited 637 screens. The gross was $4.2 million and I incorrectly had it outside my top five.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever was fifth with $3.5 million (I said $3.4 million) for $445 million total.

Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody was sixth with $2.4 million compared to my $2.1 million call. It’s at a ho-hum $19 million.

And that does it for now, folks! Until next time…