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…

Midway Box Office Prediction

Known for his mega budget disaster flicks such as Independence Day and The Day After Tomorrow, director Roland Emmerich tries his hand at a World War II epic next weekend with Midway. Budgeted at $75 million (pretty low considering the reported $165 million price tag for his 2016 dud sequel Independence Day: Resurgence), the cast includes Ed Skrein, Patrick Wilson, Luke Evans, Aaron Eckhart, Nick Jonas, Mandy Moore, Dennis Quaid, and Woody Harrelson.

I do not expect this to be Emmerich’s Saving Private Ryan or Dunkirk. Those WWII efforts had critical acclaim and Oscar buzz. This does not. There will be competition for the adult and action crowd with the debut of Doctor Sleep and second frame for Terminator: Dark Fate.

IMAX elevated pricing could help a bit, but I doubt it. My suspicion is that Midway posts middling to poor numbers in the low teens for an inauspicious start.

Midway opening weekend prediction: $13 million

For my Doctor Sleep prediction, click here:

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

For my Last Christmas prediction, click here:

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

For my Playing with Fire prediction, click here:

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

This Is Oscar

Since 2016, the NBC drama This Is Us has kept viewers in a perpetual state of tears and it’s been a massive hit for the network. As the show’s popularity has continued, the various leads on the family affair have seen their movie offers increase.

When looking at how Oscar voters could reward the work of these actors that have garnered plenty of Emmy nods, there’s some we can quickly discount. Don’t look for Milo Ventimiglia to contend for The Art of Racing in the Rain. His onscreen wife Mandy Moore won’t get supporting actress attention for next weekend’s Midway. Justin Hartley will not be feted for Little or Jexi. And while A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood could see Tom Hanks receive another nomination, the same won’t hold true for Susan Kelechi Watson.

That brings us to Watson’s TV hubby Sterling K. Brown. His big screen family drama Waves has gotten raves on the film festival circuit. It would appear his performance is most likely to appear on the radar of the awards crowd. Yet there’s a problem. 2019’s crop of supporting actor possibilities is packed. The list includes the aforementioned Hanks in Neighborhood, Brad Pitt in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, both Al Pacino and Joe Pesci for The Irishman, Anthony Hopkins in The Two Popes, Willem Dafoe in The Lighthouse, and Jamie Foxx for Just Mercy. The race simply might be too crowded for Brown.

Surprisingly, the best chance for an Us thespian to get into the Academy derby might come in an unexpected category.  This spring’s faith based release Breakthrough featured Chrissy Metz in the cast. Her acting will not be honored. However, Metz did cut an original song for the soundtrack titled “I’m Standing With You”. The songwriter is Diane Warren and she’s no stranger to Oscar. Warren has landed ten nods for her work, including songs from the last two years – “Stand Up for Something” from Marshall and “I’ll Fight” from RBG. The Best Original Song race is still uncertain, but Disney appears bound to get in with expected selections from Toy Story 4, Frozen II, Aladdin, and The Lion King. There’s also tracks from Rocketman and Cats that could factor in. Still, Metz’s pipes probably have the highest chance for recognition over the acting skills of her fellow cast members.