Blogger’s Update (02/23): A higher than expected theater count of just over 2300 screens has been announced. However, I’m not upping my estimate by too much – $1.4 million to $2.1 million.
Dave Grohl and his bandmates take a break from fighting foo to battle evil spirits in Studio 666 this Friday. The comedic horror tale comes from an idea hatched by the Foo Fighters frontman (its existence wasn’t even known until November of last year). B.J. McDonnell directs and the supporting cast (apart from the recently inducted Rock and Roll Hall of Famers) includes Whitney Cummings, Leslie Grossman, Will Forte, Jenna Ortega, and Jeff Garlin.
Distributed by Open Road, I’ve yet to see a reliable theater count for 666 (my forecast could change when I do). While the film’s leads are certainly popular onstage, I question how many of their fans will rush to see them in this. Early reviews are solid with an 83% Rotten Tomatoes score.
This might be the type of project that gets noticed when it’s available for streaming. As far as multiplex business, I’ll project it scares up less than $2 million.
Studio 666 opening weekend prediction: $2.1 million
The fourth edition of ToyStory is unveiled in theaters next weekend and reviews are out today. It is the 21st film for Pixar that began in 1995 with… ToyStory. And when it comes to Oscar voters honoring the studio’s works, there’s a rich history.
Critics so far have given a 100% stamp of approval to the sequel. The Academy established the Best Animated Feature in 2001. There’s been 18 winners and half of them are Pixar pics. The studio has also nabbed two nods in Best Picture with 2009’s Up and 2010’s… ToyStory3.
First things first: there is approximately zero doubt that part four will get Animated Feature recognition. And unless something special comes along in the second half of the year (perhaps Frozen2?), it has an excellent shot at winning. It’s also feasible that it could land Pixar’s third Picture nod, but that is far less certain at this juncture.
Another category where ToyStory4 could contend is Best Original Song. There’s two possibilities: Randy Newman’s “I Can’t Let Yourself Throw Away” and “The Ballad of the Lonesome Cowboy”, which was written by Newman and is performed by country superstar Chris Stapleton.
Blogger’s Note (06/19)… and it’s a significant one. Revising my estimate down from to $191.5 million to $167.5 million.
With the release of ToyStory4 next weekend, Pixar should have no problem having the top three animated openings of all time. The big question is whether or not it manages to have the largest so far. The sequel arrives nearly a quarter century after ToyStory kicked off the Disney owned Pixar phenomenon and nearly a decade since ToyStory3. The iconic characters of Woody (Tom Hanks) and Buzz (Tim Allen) return along with the vocal works of Annie Potts, Joan Cusack, Wallace Shawn, John Ratzenberger, Estelle Harris, and the late Don Rickles. New actors joining the party include Keegan-Michael Key, Jordan Peele, Tony Hale, Christina Hendricks, and Keanu Reeves. Josh Cooley makes his directorial debut.
Each chapter in this cinematic universe has seen its overall domestic gross increase with each entry. Part 3 took in $110 million in its first frame and legged out to $415 million. That predecessor currently has the fifth highest animated start ever. ToyStory4 is in line to easily top that and more.
Last summer’s Incredibles2 nabbed the record for the genre by a wide margin when it took in $182 million. Pixar also holds the #2 spot with 2016’s FindingDory with $135 million. I don’t see Woody and Buzz’s fourth go round having any issue topping that and it could definitely hit the #1 designation.
I’ll say it falls just a manages a few million over the Incredibles sequel for a historic start.
ToyStory4 opening weekend prediction: $167.5 million