Looking to bring in viewers for the four-day Valentine’s Day/President’s Day frame, the romantic drama The Photograph debuts in theaters this coming weekend. From director Stella Meghie, the pic features Issa Rae, Lakeith Stanfield, Chelsea Peretti, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Lil Rel Howery, and Courtney B. Vance.
The Photograph comes from Will Packer Productions, which has had a series of lower budget hits that include thrillers like No Good Deed and comedies such as Girls Trip and Night School. This genre is somewhat new territory to them.
Three years back, Meghie directed Everything, Everything – a younger skewing romantic tale which took in $11.7 million over three days. I believe a strong African-American audience could get this over that given the extra day of grosses.
The Photograph opening weekend prediction: $17.4 million
The genre of young adult romances has its share of misses at the box office recently. TheSunIsAlsoaStar will try to reverse that next weekend and that could be tough. Yara Shahidi (best known for TV’s “Black-ish”) is a bright college student who connects with exchange student Charles Melton (of Netflix’s “Riverdale”). Complications arise when her family faces deportation. Costars include Jake Choi, John Leguizamo, and Hill Harper.
Sun is directed by Ry Russo-Young. She’s already had one YA genre flop in the form of BeforeIFall, which opened in 2017 to just $4.6 million. The pic is based on a novel by Nicola Yoon, who also wrote Everything, Everything. Its film adaptation two years ago performed better and debuted to just over $11 million.
I don’t see this reaching the heights of the latter or going quite as low as the former. Mid to possibly upper single digits appears likely.
TheSunIsAlsoaStar opening weekend prediction: $5.5 million
For my JohnWick: Chapter3 – Parabellum prediction, click here:
Nineteen year old actress Amandla Stenberg is most known for her work as Rue in the original HungerGames and the 2017 romance Everything, Everything (she also headlined this summer’s box office flop TheDarkestMinds). The Toronto Film Festival has screened TheHateUGive, George Tillman Jr.’s crime drama where Stenberg’s character witnesses the shooting of her childhood best friend.
Early reviews suggest it could be a breakout role for the performer. The supporting cast includes Regina Hall, Common, and Anthony Mackie. The pic is based on last year’s YA novel by Angie Thomas. Tillman Jr. has seen many of his pics achieve financial success, such as SoulFood, Barbershop and Notorious. Awards recognition has alluded him.
Bottom line: TheHateUGive will need to get noticed by audiences in order for that recognition to have any chance. While reviews are strong, I’d say Oscar nods are a long shot and that includes Stenberg.
The film is slated for release on October 19. My Oscar Watch posts will continue…
Blogger’s Note (08/02/18) – On the eve of its premiere, I am revising my estimate from $8.7 million to $6.3 million
Based on a series of YA novels from Alexandra Bracken, TheDarkestMinds debuts in theaters next weekend. The dystopian adventures stars Amandla Stenberg (from last year’s Everything, Everything), Mandy Moore, Gwendoline Christie, and Bradley Whitford. Jennifer Yuh Nelson (best known for making parts 2 and 3 of the animated KungFuPanda franchise) directs.
We are far removed from the YA adaptation heyday of TheHungerGames and Twilight series. 20th Century Fox doesn’t seem to be hyping this one much. Instead of anything near Katniss or Bella numbers, I could see this struggling to reach double digits. The best comp could be 2013’s TheMortalInstruments: CityofBones, which made a piddling $9.3 million for its start and effectively ended any chance of future sequels. That will probably be the case here with a dark opening for Minds.
TheDarkestMinds opening weekend prediction: $6.3 million
After a rather disappointing Memorial Day weekend at the box office (more on that below), June rolls in with two major releases: Wonder Woman, the latest in the DC Cinematic Universe and Dreamworks animated feature Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:
There’s little question that Wonder Woman will open at #1, but there’s wide variations on how much it will gross out of the gate. The pic has been garnering glowing reviews and that should help (its Rotten Tomatoes score is currently 96%). I currently have it in the low to mid 90s with the thought that the number could be trending up.
A potential battle may emerge for the runner-up position between Underpants and the second weekend of Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales. However, my estimate puts the non-Sparrow Captain just aheadat #2, as I believe Pirates will suffer a hefty decline.
Holdovers Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Baywatch (which should tumble pretty far after a bad debut) should round out the top five. And with that, my top 5 estimates for the weekend:
1. Wonder Woman
Predicted Gross: $98.3 million
2. Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie
Predicted Gross: $27.4 million
3. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
Predicted Gross: $21.6 million (representing a drop of 61%)
4. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Predicted Gross: $10 million (representing a drop of 50%)
Predicted Gross: $7.5 million (representing a drop of 59%)
Box Office Results (May 26-29)
Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales easily topped the four-day holiday weekend. However, it did so with the lowest debut of any of the five films since the original in 2003. The Johnny Depp pic grossed $78.4 million over the long frame, right in line with my $78.6M estimate. It is highly likely this will turn out to be the lowest domestic grosser of the franchise thus far.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 was second with $27.1 million (I was a touch lower at $25.3M) to bring its total to $340M.
Baywatch, with wretched reviews and so-so word of mouth, performed a box office belly flop with $27.7 million from its Thursday to Monday roll out, under my projection of $39.4M. That put in in third for Friday to Monday portion of the weekend.
News was bad for Alien: Covenant as well. In its sophomore frame, it tumbled to $13.3 million for fourth (well under my $19.9M forecast).
Everything, Everything rounded out the top five with $7.6 million (I said $6.8M) for a two week tally of $23M.
Memorial Day Weekend is upon us and there’s two potential heavy hitters making their way to the multiplex: Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, the fifth entry in the Disney franchise and Baywatch, the action comedy reboot of the 90s syndicated TV show. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:
Pirates should easily place first, though my prediction puts it under the debuts of the three previous series entries. Baywatch should place second barring a majorly disappointing opening.
I’m estimating that current #1 Alien: Covenant will slip to fourth with Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 displaying a better hold in third. YA romance Everything, Everything should round out the top five.
And with that, here’s my holiday weekend Friday to Monday projections!
1. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
Predicted Gross: $78.6 million
Predicted Gross: $32.8 million ($39.4 million projected Thursday to Monday debut)
3. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Predicted Gross: $25.3 million (representing a drop of 24%)
4. Alien: Covenant
Predicted Gross: $19.9 million (representing a drop of 45%)
5. Everything, Everything
Predicted Gross: $6.8 million (representing a drop of 42%)
Box Office Results (May 19-21)
In a tight battle for #1, Alien: Covenant just managed to eek out a victory with $36.1 million. Despite mostly solid reviews, the sixth feature in the nearly 40 year-old franchise came in a bit on the lower end of expectations and under my $44.6M prediction.
Following close behind was Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 in its third frame. The Marvel hit dropped to second with $34.6 million (a tad above my $32.2M projection) for a grand total of $301 million.
Everything, Everything posted a decent third place showing with $11.7 million, right in line with my $12.3M estimate.
Snatched was fourth in its ho-hum run with $7.8 million (I said $9M) for a tally of just $33 million.
King Arthur: Legend of the Sword is still a bomb, but it was in the top 5 in its sophomore weekend and I didn’t predict it would be there. It grossed $7.1 million to bring its meager gross to $27 million.
I had Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul debuting in the five spot, but it was sixth with $7.1 million (just below my $8.1M estimate). This is a franchise worst debut for the series.
Summer 2017 keeps rolling along as three new titles populate the marketplace this weekend. They are Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant (the sixth film in the nearly 40 year-old franchise), Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul (the fourth film in the seven year-old franchise), and YA romance Everything, Everything. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each here:
As I see it, Covenant should manage a mid 40s debut. That’s under what its direct predecessor Prometheus accomplished five years ago, but it should be good enough to nab the #1 spot from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. The Marvel hit should end its two-week reign atop the charts.
I’m predicting a third place showing for Everything, Everything with Snatched nabbing fourth in its sophomore frame and WimpyKid rounding out the top five. As for King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, it should plummet out of the top five in its second weekend after a terrible debut (more on that below).
And with that, my top 5 predictions for the weekend:
1. Alien: Covenant
Predicted Gross: $44.6 million
2. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Predicted Gross: $32.2 million (representing a drop of 50%)
3. Everything, Everything
Predicted Gross: $12.3 million
Predicted Gross: $9 million (representing a drop of 54%)
5. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul
Predicted Gross: $8.1 million
Box Office Results (May 12-14)
As expected, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 easily dominated the box office in weekend #2 with $65.2 million, right in line with my $64.3M projection. The sequel has grossed $248 million thus far.
The Amy Schumer/Goldie Hawn comedy did just OK in second place with $19.5 million, a bit shy of my $21.1M estimate. Not a bad opening for a $42 million budget, but this is well below the $30M achieved by Schumer’s Trainwreck two summers ago.
It took until the second weekend of summer to have a flop of epic proportions and that honor belongs to King Arthur: Legend of the Sword. The Guy Ritchie pic took in an embarrassing $15.3 million, well under my $24.4M prediction. Considering its reported $175 million budget, Warner Bros looks to lose a lot of cash on this ill-advised investment.
Holdovers populated spots 4-6. The Fate of the Furious was fourth with $5.4 million (I said $5.7M) for a $215M total. I incorrectly had The Boss Baby in fifth, but it was sixth with $4.4 million (I said $4.9M) for an overall tally of $162M. Instead, Beauty and the Beast rounded out the top five with $4.8 million to bring its massive cume to $494M. It is currently the 8th highest domestic earner of all time.