Improbably based on a true story, the comedy Tag hits theaters next weekend. Based on a 2013 WallStreetJournal article, the film focuses on a group of pals who engage in a long-term version of the kids game. Stars include Ed Helms, Jeremy Renner, Jon Hamm, Jake Johnson, Isla Fisher, Annabelle Wallis, Hannibal Buress, Rashida Jones, Leslie Bibb, Brian Dennehy, and Lil Rel Howery. It marks the directorial debut of Jeff Tomsic.
The ads hype the “actually based on real stuff” angle, but I felt the trailer could’ve been a bit stronger. I’m not confident this holds any significant breakout potential. The Warner Bros release would likely love the achieve the $17 million debut of this spring’s GameNight and that might be the generous ceiling here. I’d say even with the cast of familiar faces, it doesn’t have the relative star power or laugh out loud promo materials. And I wouldn’t count Renner as this isn’t the genre he’s known for… see TheHouse from a year ago.
Outside of the Hangover franchise, Helms has had a rough road recently as FatherFigures was a dud and even his Vacation reboot fell a bit shy of $60 million three summers back. I’ll project this reaches low double digits to mid teens for a so-so showing. As we await the blockbuster comedic pic of this season, I have a hunch Tag is not it.
As I see it, the newbie looks poised for a third place showing. The top two should be held by Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. However, unlike the last two weekends, I don’t see it in that order.
Jumanji came within a half million dollars of unseating Jedi for the four-day New Year’s weekend. I’ll predict it has a smaller percentage drop and rises to the top spot in weekend #3.
I also see The Greatest Showman vaulting above Pitch Perfect 3 to stay in the #4 position.
Here’s my top 5 estimates for the weekend ahead:
1. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Predicted Gross: $29.1 million (representing a drop of 41%)
2. Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Predicted Gross: $24.8 million (representing a drop of 52%)
3. Insidious: The Last Key
Predicted Gross: $18.6 million
4. The Greatest Showman
Predicted Gross: $10.6 million (representing a drop of 32%)
5. Pitch Perfect 3
Predicted Gross: $8 million (representing a drop of 52%)
Box Office Results (December 29-January 1)
The year ended with a box office photo finish between Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, adding some excitement as Luke Skywalker and company nearly were knocked off their #1 perch.
Jedi managed to take the top spot with $66.8 million (below my four-day estimate of $77.8 million) to bring its total to $531 million. While this is well below what Force Awakens earned, Jedi did become 2017’s highest grossing film over Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.
Jumanji was right behind with $66.3 million (topping my $58 million forecast) for a total of $185 million thus far. As mentioned above, look for this to vault to #1 this weekend.
Pitch Perfect 3 was third with $21.6 million compared to my $25.1 million prediction in its second weekend for a $68 million overall gross.
The Greatest Showman was close behind in fourth with $20.9 million, displaying great legs and easily eclipsing my $14.9 million projection. It’s at $54 million overall.
Ferdinand rounded out the top five with $14.8 million (I said $12.5 million) for $57 million total.
Coco was sixth with $10 million (I said $9.8 million) for a $182 million tally.
All the Money in the World took the seven spot with a solid $7.2 million compared to my $5.2 million prediction for $14 million thus far.
Darkest Hour was eighth with $7 million (I said $7.3 million) and $19 million total.
Downsizing was ninth at $6.2 million (I said $6.1 million) for $16 million overall while The Shape of Water was 11th at $4.7 million (I said $5.7 million) and it’s also made $16 million.
I incorrectly had Father Figures outside the top ten, but it was 10th with $4.9 million and $14 million overall.
Well folks – here we are as 2017 closes out with another four-day holiday weekend and it’s enough to make a great mathematician’s head spin.
Blogger’s note: I am not a great mathematician. Nevertheless, I will plow forward with estimates as there’s no new releases. Yet there are a multitude of holiday holdovers looking to match or even surpass what they accomplished this past Christmas weekend.
You have to travel all the way to 2006 for the last time Christmas and New Year’s Day fell on a Monday. When that occurred 11 years ago, the bulk of pictures significantly exceeded the three-day grosses from the December 22-24 frame. Most even experienced an uptick from the Yuletide four-day frame. We should see that happen again as moviegoers have lots of free time during this end of year period, they’re using those gift certificates, and the kiddos are off school.
Here’s how I have the top 10 looking to close out another year on the box office charts:
**Please note that the increases noted would be from the three-day Christmas grosses (22-24) to the four-day New Year’s weekend predictions…
1. Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Predicted Gross: $77.8 million (representing an increase of 9%)
2. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Predicted Gross: $58 million (representing an increase of 59%)
3. Pitch Perfect 3
Predicted Gross: $25.1 million (representing an increase of 26%)
4. The Greatest Showman
Predicted Gross: $14.9 million (representing an increase of 69%)
Predicted Gross: $12.5 million (representing an increase of 71%)
Predicted Gross: $9.8 million (representing an increase of 82%)
7. Darkest Hour
Predicted Gross: $7.3 million (representing an increase of 88%)
Predicted Gross: $6.1 million (representing an increase of 23%)
9. The Shape of Water
Predicted Gross: $5.7 million (representing an increase of 90%)
10. All the Money in the World
Predicted Gross: $5.2 million
Box Office Results (December 22-25)
It was indeed a bustling Christmas weekend as some newbies rose above expectations while others fell considerably short. There were also impressive expansions of awards contenders.
Yet as anticipated, Star Wars: The Last Jedi easily took the top spot in weekend #2. However, it did so with numbers far short of my estimate. The eighth episode of the beloved franchise took in $99 million (well short of my $129 million estimate) for an overall tally of $395 million.
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle gave Sony reason to celebrate with an estimated (final number still not in on Wednesday at noon for some reason) $55.4 million over the four-day. This tops my $40.5 million prediction. Since its Wednesday debut, Jungle has amassed $72 million (above my $55.1 million take). It would appear this franchise will continue on.
Pitch Perfect 3 opened in third to a decent $26.4 million. Still, that’s under my $33.6 million forecast and well under what its predecessor achieved two years ago.
Hugh Jackman’s The Greatest Showman posted fourth with $14.4 million for the four-day and $19 million since its Wednesday start. These are a touch under my respective estimates of $16.1 million and $22.4 million. That’s a tad underwhelming, but I see it holding up well this weekend.
Ferdinand rounded out the top five with $10.1 million (I said $11.2 million) for a $29 million overall tally.
Coco was sixth with $8.1 million (I said $8.8 million) as the Pixar flick has grossed $164 million total.
Debuting in seventh and quite disappointingly was Matt Damon’s Downsizing at just $7.6 million compared to my $11.7 million prediction. With mixed critical reaction and poor word-of-mouth, look for this to diminish fast.
Darkest Hour, which boasts Best Actor Oscar front-runner Gary Oldman as Winston Churchill, was 8th as it expanded its theater count. It grossed $5.5 million and I incorrectly had it outside the top 10.
Besides Downsizing, the other new flop of the weekend was Owen Wilson/Ed Helms comedy Father Figures. The poorly reviewed pic opened ninth at just $5.4 million (under my $8.6 million estimate).
The Shape of Water (another Oscar contender) took 10th as it opened wider with $4.4 million. Again, I missed the mark and had this outside the top 10.
And that does it for now, ladies and gents! It’s been quite a treat bringing you my box office predictions for 2017 and it will continue into 2018! Until then…
Well, it’s Christmas week at the box office and that creates one busy time with FIVE new pictures debuting either Wednesday or Friday. They are: fantasy action reboot/sequel Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle with Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart, musical comedy sequel Pitch Perfect 3, Hugh Jackman’s musically inclined The Greatest Showman, Matt Damon’s sci-fi dramedy Downsizing, and Owen Wilson/Ed Helms comedy Father Figures. You can read my detailed prediction posts on them all here:
It doesn’t end there. Ridley Scott’s All the Money in the World, the well-publicized crime drama due to its recasting of Kevin Spacey debuts on Christmas Day (Monday). Its grosses will only factor in for its one day earnings this weekend. I’ll predict $3.2 million, which should put it outside the top 10.
And there are awards hopefuls expanding their theater counts. Both The Shape of Water and Darkest Hour are expected to do so. Either of them (especially Water) could factor into the top 10 based on the number of screens. However, I’m not including either (yet) without theater counts. I’ll revise my top 10 if they creep in.
As I see it, Jumanji is riding a wave of good buzz and decent reviews and I have it placing second. Pitch Perfect 3 is its most serious competitor and part 2 did totally unexpected numbers a couple of years back. I still have it third.
The rest of the top five could be filled with other newbies The Greatest Showman and Downsizing. The Christmas weekend often sees meager drops for holdovers, especially for family fare. That could benefit both Ferdinand and Coco. The former could stay in the top 5 depending on how Downsizing performs.
And then we get to Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which just had the 2nd highest domestic opening of all time (more on that below). Over the last two Christmas weekends, we’ve seen both Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story enter their sophomore weekends and experience drops in the high 30s. It’s worth noting that the Awakens dip was over a three-day weekend and not 2017’s four-day frame. I still foresee Jedi dwindling about 39% for what should easily be a return weekend atop the charts.
Whew. OK… and with that, my top 10 predictions for the four-day holiday frame:
1. Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Predicted Gross: $129 million (representing a drop of 41%)
2. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Predicted Gross: $40.5 million (Friday to Monday), $55.1 million (Wednesday to Monday)
3. Pitch Perfect 3
Predicted Gross: $33.6 million
4. The Greatest Showman
Predicted Gross: $16.1 million (Friday to Monday), $22.4 million (Wednesday to Monday)
Predicted Gross: $11.7 million
Predicted Gross: $11.2 million (representing a drop of 16%)
Predicted Gross: $8.8 million (representing a drop of 12%)
8. Father Figures
Predicted Gross: $8.6 million
Predicted Gross: $4.5 million (representing a drop of 14%)
10. Daddy’s Home 2
Predicted Gross: $3.4 million (representing a drop of 11%)
**The Shape of Water and Darkest Hour screen counts could alter top ten on Thursday (12/21)
Box Office Results (December 15-17)
Star Wars: The Last Jedi had no trouble landing the second biggest opening ever behind its predecessor The Force Awakens. The eighth episode in the vaunted franchise took in $220 million, right on target with $219.7 million prediction. Disney should be ecstatic with this result. Jedi should easily top the box office for the foreseeable future.
The Jedi effect caused some newcomers and holdovers to fall below my estimates. Animated Ferdinand debuted in second with $13.4 million, under my $18.6 million projection. The good news? As seen above, it should experience a nice hold entering this weekend.
Coco was third with $9.9 million (I was a bit higher at $11.2 million) for $150 million total.
Wonder was in the four spot with $5.2 million (I said $4.9 million) to bring its earnings to $109 million.
Justice League rounded out the top 5 with $4.3 million (I said $4.2 million) for $219 million overall.
Daddy’s Home 2 was sixth with $3.8 million. I incorrectly held it outside the top 6. The Will Ferrell/Mark Wahlberg sequel has made $96 million and should easily cross the century mark this weekend.
Finally, I incorrectly had The Disaster Artist in my top 6, but it suffered a hefty decline and placed 8th with $2.7 million compared to my more generous $4.3 million. The James Franco pic stands at $13 million.
And that does it for now, folks! Until next time… and Merry Christmas from your trusty blogger!
Looking to tickle the funny bones of audiences over the long holiday weekend, Father Figures debuts next Friday. The pic casts Owen Wilson and Ed Helms as brothers searching for their biological pops after mom Glenn Close informs them it could be several men. J.K. Simmons, Christopher Walken, Ving Rhames, and Terry Bradshaw (playing himself) are among them. Katt Williams, June Squibb, and Harry Shearer are included in the supporting cast with Lawrence Sher directing.
Originally titled Bastards, the comedy was originally slated by Warner Bros. for a November 2016 opening before a delay until January 2017 and finally this Christmastime release. That doesn’t exactly inspire confidence with the multiple push backs.
Figures has plenty of competition and of the five wide releases premiering over the weekend, it will likely place fifth among them. Its best hope would be to replicate what Why Him? (last year’s Christmas entry in the genre) did with $15.5 million over the four-day frame.
That could be wishful thinking. I’ll predict this only reaches high single digits to low double digits for its roll out.
Father Figures opening weekend prediction: $8.6 million (Friday to Monday estimate)
For my Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle prediction, click here: