November 22-24 Box Office Predictions

There’s no doubt that Disney will rule the box office in this pre Thanksgiving frame as Frozen II blasts into theaters along with Tom Hanks as Mister Rogers in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood and Chadwick Boseman in the action thriller 21 Bridges. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/11/12/frozen-ii-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/11/13/a-beautiful-day-in-the-neighborhood-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/11/15/21-bridges-box-office-prediction/

For the sequel to the 2013 billion dollar plus phenomenon, it’s all about the number and how high I’m willing to let it go (my apologies). Estimates are all over the map with some in the $150 million plus range. That wouldn’t exactly be a shock, but I’m a bit skeptical it reaches that vicinity. Some families may wait until the long holiday weekend. My forecast puts it about $6 million ahead of what Toy Story 4 accomplished over the summer.

The real battle could be for #2 between Neighborhood and the second frame of Ford v Ferrari. The latter debuted at the top of its anticipated range and scored a scorching A+ Cinemascore grade. The second weekend drop could be minimal and put it in the high teens range. That’s just where I expect the neighborhood for Beautiful to be and I’ll give it the slight edge.

Bridges is lacking buzz despite the presence of Black Panther and my high single digits projection puts it in fourth with Playing with Fire rounding out the top five in its third weekend.

Here’s my take on how I see it playing out:

1. Frozen II

Predicted Gross: $126.7 million

2. A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood 

Predicted Gross: $18.6 million

3. Ford v Ferrari 

Predicted Gross: $18.2 million

4. 21 Bridges 

Predicted Gross: $9.8 million

5. Playing with Fire 

Predicted Gross: $4.9 million

Box Office Results (November 15-17)

As mentioned, Ford v Ferrari had a rock solid showing and gave Disney its first #1 opening for a Fox owned property. The Oscar hopeful zoomed off with $31.4 million, ahead of my $24.4 million prediction. Expect sturdy holds in the weeks ahead.

An unexpected pileup happened for second place as Midway edged competitors out with $8.5 million. It didn’t reach my $10.2 million forecast and has taken in $34 million in two weeks.

Third place went to perhaps the story of the weekend as Charlie’s Angels absolutely tanked with a paltry $8.3 million, well under my projection of $14.2 million. It’s yet another example of serious 2019 franchise fatigue.

Playing with Fire was fourth and it also made $8.3 million. My guess? $8.3 million! Hey, I got something right! It’s at $25 million after ten days.

Last Christmas was fifth with $6.4 million (I said $7 million) for $22 million overall.

Finally, newcomer The Good Liar was seventh with just $5.6 million, in range with my take of $6 million.

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

November 15-17 Box Office Predictions

It’s been a distressingly sluggish November at the box office thus far and it might take Frozen II to heat it back up. That doesn’t come out until weekend. For this frame, we have the racing pic and Oscar hopeful Ford v Ferrari with Matt Damon and Christian Bale, the reboot of the Charlie’s Angels franchise with Kristen Stewart, and the Ian McKellen/Helen Mirren thriller The Good Liar. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on them here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/11/05/ford-v-ferrari-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/11/06/charlies-angels-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/11/07/the-good-liar-box-office-prediction/

Some estimates have Ford zooming to the top spot with $30 million plus. I’m skeptical. While it should have no trouble hitting #1, I believe mid 20s is the more likely scenario as it hopes to flex strong leg muscle over the holiday season.

Audiences have shown a distaste with unasked for reboots all year and I expect that to continue with Angels, which has failed to generate significant buzz. My low teens projection would guarantee no more editions of this series into the future.

As for Liar, solid reviews and Oscar chatter would’ve helped and it hasn’t achieved either. My $6 million take leaves it outside of the top five.

When it comes to holdovers, Midway was a surprise #1 due to the massive underperforming of Doctor Sleep (more on that below). A dip in the early to mid 40s should put it in fifth.

I expect Playing with Fire and Last Christmas to have the best holds in their sophomore weekends in the 30s region, while Sleep should plummet in the mid 50s or more. This means Sleep may find its way below the high five. I anticipate that being the case and here’s how I envision the weekend:

1. Ford v Ferrari 

Predicted Gross: $24.4 million

2. Charlie’s Angels 

Predicted Gross: $14.2 million

3. Midway

Predicted Gross: $10.2 million

4. Playing with Fire 

Predicted Gross: $8.3 million

5. Last Christmas 

Predicted Gross: $7 million

Box Office Results (November 8-10)

It isn’t often that the film you pick to be at #4 tops the charts, but it happened this weekend as Midway led a sleepy frame with $17.8 million. That’s above my $13 million prediction. With a reported budget of $100 million, Lionsgate might not be popping champagne corks. Yet they do have bragging rights.

That World War II pic has Doctor Sleep to thank for its relative success. The Shining sequel was a massive failure with just $14.1 million for second place. That’s considerably under my $24.8 million projection. Warner Bros is fortunate to still be counting that Joker cash because there’s absolutely zero positive way to spin this.

John Cena’s family comedy Playing with Fire surpassed expectations in third with $12.7 million, well above my $7.9 million take. It looks poised for a healthy holiday run.

Speaking of the Yuletide season, rom com Last Christmas opened fourth with $11.4 million. That’s under its anticipated numbers and I had it at $16.9 million. However, with a smallish price tag of $30 million, it too looks for meager declines ahead.

Terminator: Dark Fate plummeted to fifth with $10.8 million compared to my guesstimate of $13.2 million. The highly disappointing two-week tally is $48 million and the $100 million mark domestically appears out of reach.

Joker was sixth with $9.2 million, on pace with my $9.1 million prediction for $313 million overall.

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil was seventh at $8.4 million (I said $7.2 million) as it nears the century figure at $97 million.

Harriet was eighth in its sophomore outing with $7.4 million (I went with $7.7 million) for $23 million total.

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

November 8-10 Box Office Predictions

It’s a busy weekend at the box office as four new titles enter the marketplace: Shining sequel Doctor Sleep, Paul Feig directed rom com Last Christmas, Roland Emmerich made WWII action pic Midway, and John Cena led family comedy Playing with Fire. You can peruse my detailed prediction posts on them all here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/10/29/doctor-sleep-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/10/30/last-christmas-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/10/31/midway-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/10/31/playing-with-fire-box-office-prediction/

Barring a rather major over performance from Christmas, the #1 spot this weekend should go to Doctor Sleep. I’m putting right in its expected range of mid 20s. Reviews are solid though not spectacular and the horror pic may have trouble finding the youth audience that the genre typically depends on. The crowd is likely to skew a bit older due to the classic 1980 Kubrick film it’s following.

There is certainly a shot that Christmas celebrates a higher start than my mid teens projection, but the best hope could be for small drops in the weekends ahead.

Those two newbies seemed destined to hold the 1-2 positions as Terminator: Dark Fate had a dim start last weekend. While I don’t see it dropping in the plus 60s range like Godzilla: King of the Monsters and Men in Black International did over the summer, a mid 50s fall is feasible. That could put it in a close race for third with Midway in the low teens.

Harriet came in on the plus side of its expectations and I foresee a dip in the low to mid 30s. That could put it close to where I expect final newcomer Fire to hit and where the Maleficent: Mistress of Evil earnings are.

With all this activity, let’s expand that top five to eight, shall we?

1. Doctor Sleep 

Predicted Gross: $24.8 million

2. Last Christmas 

Predicted Gross: $16.9 million

3. Terminator: Dark Fate 

Predicted Gross: $13.2 million

4. Midway 

Predicted Gross: $13 million

5. Joker

Predicted Gross: $9.1 million

6. Playing with Fire 

Predicted Gross: $7.9 million

7. Harriet 

Predicted Gross: $7.7 million

8. Maleficent: Mistress of Evil 

Predicted Gross: $7.2 million

Box Office Results (November 1-3)

The reunification of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton hit #1 as expected, but its premiere was a major disappointment. Dark Fate took in $29 million, well below forecasts (including my $38.1 million take). While that doesn’t quite mark the previous franchise low of 2015’s Genisys at $27 million (which actually hit low 40s in a five-day holiday rollout), it’s clear that the fate of this will be as a big financial loser domestically.

Joker was second with $13.5 million, a touch more than my $12.2 million prediction. Its total is an incredible $299 million.

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil was close behind in third with $13 million, reaching beyond my $10.2 million projection for an $85 million tally.

As mentioned, Harriet hit its mark (and might have saved Cynthia Erivo’s Oscar chances) with $11.6 million. I was lower at $8.2 million. Look for this to have smallish declines as it achieved an A+ Cinemascore grade.

The Addams Family rounded out the top five at $8.2 million (I said $7 million) for a snappy haul of $85 million.

The weekend’s other newbies both struggled at the bottom of the top ten. Motherless Brooklyn was ninth at just $3.5 million, in line with my $3.2 million prediction. The animated Arctic Dogs was a bad, bad performer in tenth with $2.9 million (less than my $4.5 million projection).

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

Last Christmas Box Office Prediction

The Yuletide rom com Last Christmas presents itself in theaters next weekend from Bridesmaids director Paul Feig. If you’re hoping it features the classic Wham! holiday track in its soundtrack, you’re in luck as it plays (as well as some unreleased songs by the late lead singer George Michael). Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke and Henry Golding of Crazy Rich Asians fame headline. Costars include Golding’s Rich mother Michelle Yeoh and Emma Thompson (who co-wrote the script).

While its two leads don’t really have a track record opening a film, this should succeed in bringing in a female audience (and perhaps some fans of Mr. Michael). Even though the genres are different, this could premiere with similar numbers to Feig’s previous effort A Simple Favor ($16.1 million).

I’ll say that range is likely as Christmas hopes to leg out solidly in the weeks ahead.

Last Christmas opening weekend prediction: $16.9 million

For my Doctor Sleep prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/10/29/doctor-sleep-box-office-prediction/

For my Midway prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/10/31/midway-box-office-prediction/

For my Playing with Fire prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/10/31/playing-with-fire-box-office-prediction/

Ladies and Gentlemen: The Best of George Michael

On Christmas Day – the world lost another musical icon in 2016 when George Michael passed at age 53. I’ve been a huge fan of the singer for whole life and I wanted to provide my personal Top 25 list of my favorite GM tunes. The listing also includes songs from his work in Wham! prior to him going solo in 1987. I did make the choice not to include covers. However, check out his covers of Elton John’s “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me” and Queen’s “Somebody to Love” in particular.

For those not intimately familiar with this brilliant singer’s work, I urge you to explore your Apple Music or other streaming service to appreciate just how remarkable he was. And these 25 songs represent a solid start.

RIP George Michael.

25. “Monkey” from Faith (1987)

24. “Spinning the Wheel” from Older (1996)

23. “Outside” from Ladies & Gentlemen: The Best of George Michael (1998)

22. “Fantasy” – B-Side Single (1990)

21. “Move On” from Older (1996)

20. “Amazing” from Patience (2004)

19. “I’m Your Man” from Music from the Edge of Heaven (1986)

18. “I Want Your Sex” from Faith (1987)

17. “Too Funky” from Red Hot + Dance Compilation (1992)

16. “A Different Corner” from Music from the Edge of Heaven (1986)

15. “The Edge of Heaven” from Music from the Edge of Heaven (1986)

14. “Hard Day” from Faith (1987)

13. “One More Try” from Faith (1987)

12. “Freedom” from Make It Big (1984)

11. “Kissing a Fool” from Faith (1987)

10. “Father Figure” from Faith (1987)

9. “Last Christmas” from Music from the Edge of Heaven (1986)

8. “Praying for Time” from Listen Without Prejudice (1990)

7. “Wake Me Up Before You Go -Go” from Make It Big (1984)

6. “Careless Whisper” from Make It Big (1984)

5. “Faith” from Faith (1987)

4. “Fastlove” from Older (1996)

3. “Cowboys and Angels” from Listen Without Prejudice (1990)

2. “Everything She Wants” from Make It Big (1984)

1. “Freedom ’90” from Listen Without Prejudice (1990)