It’s become a common occurrence over the past few Labor Day weekends to see a high-profile picture from our neighbor to the south released stateside. 2018 is no different as Mexican drama Ya Veremos opens domestically Friday. The pic comes from director Pedro Pablo Ibarra with a cast including Mauricio Ochmann, Fernanda Castillo, and Emiliano Aramayo.
A number of these selections are from distributor Pantelion Films, which is behind this. Veremos has performed well in Mexico. The release pattern has been extremely consistent for these imports – a debut with a theater count of 300-400 screens. This is slated to premiere on 350.
The results, however, have been varied. 2013’s Instructions Not Included provided the high mark with $10.3 million. Nothing has matched that since. 2014’s Cantinflas took in $3.5 million. 2016’s No Manches Frida made $4.6 million. Last summer’s Hazlo Como Hombre managed just $1.4 million. All of these grosses were for the four-day holiday frame.
Recent trends would indicate Veremos is more likely to come in on the low-end of that scale and not hit the surprising earnings of Instructions five years ago.
Ya Veremos opening weekend prediction: $2.5 million (Friday to Monday estimate)
The fall box office officially is underway this weekend and it can’t come soon enough after a truly lackluster end to the summer season. This season is looking to kick off in record breaking fashion with the release of Stephen King adapted horror pic It as well as the Reese Witherspoon rom com Home Again. You can read my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:
Riding a wave of solid buzz coupled with its eerie TV spots and trailers, It is shaping up to be an event film. My estimate easily makes it the highest September debut of all time and biggest horror opening in history.
Home Again should easily be #2 considering the extreme lack of competition, but the question is how effective it will be as counter programming for female audiences. I have it just under a teens debut as it hopes to leg out in subsequent weekends.
The rest of the top five will be filled with holdovers. The Hitman’s Bodyguard three week reign on top will be over. Last weekend’s #2 Annabelle: Creation may suffer the largest decline because of the It factor.
And with that, my top 5 predictions for the weekend:
Predicted Gross: $65.4 million
2. Home Again
Predicted Gross: $11.3 million
Predicted Gross: $5.4 million (representing a drop of 48%)
Predicted Gross: $3.6 million (representing a drop of 43%)
5. Annabelle: Creation
Predicted Gross: $3.5 million (representing a drop of 54%)
Box Office Results (September 1-4)
As anticipated, the summer movie season closed with a whimper. That said, most of the holdovers help up better than my estimates while two newcomers couldn’t manage to find an audience. Even though my forecasts were low, this was still the weakest Labor Day frame in 17 years.
The Hitman’s Bodyguard placed first for the third weekend in a row with $13.2 million, managing to easily surpass my $8.9M projection. It ends its run in first place with $57 million total.
Annballe: Creation was second with $9.1 million – topping my meager $5.7M estimate for a tally of $90 million.
WindRiver continued a laudible run, climbing to third with $7.8 million (I was under with $5.1M). It’s made $20 million thus far.
Animated Leap! was fourth with $6.2 million (I said $5.4M) to see its total jump to $12 million.
Dunkirk rounded out the top five with $5.5 million, ahead of my $4.2M prediction. The Oscar hopeful has amassed $180 million.
Aforementioned newbies both bombed. Latin comedy HazloComoHombre earned a measly $1.4 million (I went higher with $3.5M). Long delayed Alicia Vikander period piece TulipFever fared even worse at $1.3 million (I predicted $1.9M). Those debuts were good for 22nd and 24th place, respectively. Ouch.
After this weekend’s incredibly sluggish box office frame (more on that below), Hollywood is more or less taking the Labor Day holiday off. Only two pictures are debuting and neither is a wide release. They are the Spanish language comedy Hazlo Como Hombre and oft-delayed costume drama Tulip Fever. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:
Even though Hombre is on 200 screens less than Tulip, I’m predicting it will have a higher opening. My $3.5 million estimate for it outshines my $1.9 million one for Tulip. Either way, my takes on the newbies put them both outside the top 5.
The good news (if you can call it that) for returnees is that this particular weekend usually sees very small declines and even increases from the previous weekend. That should mean a return engagement on top for The Hitman’s Bodyguard for the third time.
There could be a legitimate battle for #2 depending on the fluctuations of holdovers like Annabelle: Creation, Leap!, WindRiver, Dunkirk, or a potentially higher Hombre gross than I’m saying.
And with that, my top 5 estimates for the holiday weekend:
1. The Hitman’s Bodyguard
Predicted Gross: $8.9 million (representing a drop of 13%)
2. Annabelle: Creation
Predicted Gross: $5.7 million (representing a drop of 25%)
Predicted Gross: $5.4 million (representing an increase of 15%)
Predicted Gross: $5.1 million (representing an increase of 11%)
Predicted Gross: $4.2 million (representing an increase of 10%)
Box Office Results (August 25-27)
It was, to put it mildly, a terrible weekend at the box office. Between the lack of any high-profile releases, a hurricane in Texas, and a boxing match that captured the nation’s attention on Saturday night, the top 12 sunk to its lowest level since late September 2001. Obviously, this was at a time when the country was still reeling from the 9/11 tragedy. It will clearly take It the following weekend to wake the box office from its slumber because it isn’t happening over Labor Day.
As anticipated, The Hitman’s Bodyguard repeated at #1 with $10.2 million, in line with my $10.5M estimate for a two-week total of $39M. Look for it to three peat this weekend in another disastrous frame.
Annabelle: Creation held the runner-up spot again with $7.6 million, on pace with my $7.7M projection for a $78M overall tally.
Animated Leap! debuted in third with a middling $4.7 million, a bit above my $4.1M take. The production did manage an A Cinemascore grade, so it’ll hope for a fair Labor Day gross.
I incorrectly left the Jeremy Renner thriller WindRiver outside the top 5, but it expanded its screen count to place fourth and made $4.6 million to bring its earnings to $10M.
LoganLucky was fifth with $4.2 million (I said $4M) and it’s lackluster total is $14M.
Dunkirk was sixth with $3.9 million (I estimated $4.2M) for $172M overall.
Other debuts failed to garner eyeballs. BirthoftheDragon was 8th with $2.7 million compared to my $2.9M projection. Faith based drama AllSaints faltered in 16th with $1.5 million. I was more generous with a $2.6M prediction.
Hollywood is pretty much taking the Labor Day weekend off and the highest debut (unless Tulip Fever blossoms which is unlikely) could well be Pantelion’s Hazlo Como Hombre. The Spanish language comedy comes from a studio that is used to releasing their product on this particular weekend to robust results.
Four years ago, Pantelion’s studio put out Instructions Not Included and shocked box office prognosticators with a $10.3 million four-day holiday gross. Last year during the same frame, No Manches Frida took in $4.6 million. The release pattern for both pics were similar: put them out in 300-something theaters and watch the high per screen averages roll in.
The studio had a huge hit earlier this year with How to Be a Latin Lover, which debuted in over 1000 theaters and made over $12 million for its start. Hombre is slated to premiere on approximately 370 screens. Not every Pantelion pic has been a success, as June’s 3 Idiotas stumbled with just north of $600,000 on the typical 300ish screens.
So where’s that put this one? Well, it’s unpredictable when you look over the history, but I’ll say this performs similarly yet a bit lower to No Manches Frida in the $3-potentially $5M range.
Hazlo Como Hombre opening weekend prediction: $3.5 million (Friday to Monday estimate)