Shaft Box Office Prediction

The third generation of the Shaft family debuts in theaters next weekend with Jessie Usher playing an FBI agent in the action pic. Arriving nearly 50 years after Richard Roundtree played John Shaft and almost two decades after Samuel L. Jackson played his nephew, both actors are present in the newest iteration. Tim Story (maker of the Ride Along pics) directs with a supporting cast including Alexandra Shipp, Regina Hall, and Method Man.

Reportedly made for a smallish $30 million budget, the studio behind Shaft would love to match the $21 million opening weekend debut of the 2000 Jackson led summer flick. Tracking puts in right in that range. However, we’ve seen reboots disappoint in 2019.

I’ll say this gets to mid to high teens and considering the price tag, that’s not too shabby.

Shaft opening weekend prediction: $16.8 million

For my Men in Black: International prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/06/05/men-in-black-international-box-office-prediction/

For my Late Night prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/06/09/__trashed/

For my The Dead Don’t Die prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/06/09/the-dead-dont-die-box-office-prediction/

The Depths of Hellboy

Over the past year and change, the superhero genre has been flush with massive successes such as Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War, Aquaman, Captain Marvel, and current box office champ Shazam!, which has dutifully met expectations. The upcoming Avengers: Endgame is looking to set the all time opening record in two weeks. Something was bound to eventually get lost in the shuffle and that turned out to be Hellboy this weekend.

The film rebooted the Dark Horse Comics franchise that debuted in 2004 with Guillermo del Toro behind the camera and Ron Perlman as the horn clad anti-hero. A 2008 sequel, Hellboy II: The Golden Army, built on the grosses of its predecessor.

Neil Marshall took over directorial duties for the new Hellboy with David Harbour of “Stranger Things” cast as the title character. All along the way, the marketing campaign seemed curiously muted. It was as if Lionsgate might have known they had a dog on their hands. And they did. The review embargo didn’t lift until late this week. Rotten Tomatoes has been ripe with bad critical reaction with a 15% score. CinemaScore audiences haven’t been kind either with a lowly C rating.

On Sunday, the initial results have Hellboy in third place with just $12 million. Not only is that behind the second frame of Shazam!, it’s after the debut of the Regina Hall comedy Little. To put that in perspective, the 2004 Hellboy made $23 million out of the gate. The Golden Army took in $34 million. For both of those films, the opening weekends represented a hefty chunk of the overall earnings. In the case of the second installment, it fell hard in its sophomore frame due to another comic boom sequel premiering called The Dark Knight. With its toxic word of mouth, I expect this version to tumble at least 60% in weekend #2 and probably more.

If there’s any silver lining for the studio, it’s that the reboot cost a reported $50 million. That’s certainly low on the scale for this genre. Yet we can be sure this iteration of the character is a one-off. And we’ve found out what the depths of Hellboy are on a financial level and it’s not pretty.

Little Box Office Prediction

Borrowing its plot themes from comedies such as Big and 13 Going on 30, the Will Packer produced pic Little debuts next weekend. Regina Hall stars as an overworked tech mogul who’s transformed into a teen version of herself. That 13-year-old self is played by Marsai Martin (of TV’s “Black-ish”) and the young actress holds an executive producer credit here (making her the youngest person ever to do so). Tina Gordon directs and Issa Rae, Justin Hartley, and Rachel Dratch costar.

Mr. Packer’s previous studio efforts like Girls Trip have turned into profitable ventures. Little hopes to bring in a sizable African-American audience and the chances of this over performing are real.

A gross in the mid to high teens is certainly feasible, but I’ll project low teens is where this ends up.

Little opening weekend prediction: $14 million

For my Hellboy prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/04/03/hellboy-box-office-prediction/

For my Missing Link prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/04/05/missing-link-box-office-prediction/

For my After prediction, click here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2019/04/07/after-box-office-prediction/

2018 Golden Globe Predictions

The Golden Globes, perhaps the biggest precursor of all to the Oscars, unveils their nominees this Thursday as awards prognosticators like me attempt to read tea leaves. As a reminder, the Globes do it a bit differently than the Academy. For Picture and lead acting races, nominees are divided into Drama and Musical/Comedy. Unlike the Oscars, Screenplay is just one category with five pictures, whether they’re original or adapted works.

It should be strong showings for A Star Is Born and The Favourite in particular. Another difference between Globes and Oscar is that foreign features are only honored in their particular category. That’s significant this year as Roma will only be called for Foreign Language Film.

One item to pay attention to – Clint Eastwood’s The Mule. Despite coming out a week from Friday, it has yet to have reviews come out (perhaps this will change by Thursday). If it makes a showing in any of the dramatic races, that could bode well for Oscar attention.

Here are my predictions for the nominees in each category, along with an alternate and a wild card pick. I’ll have my weekly Oscar predictions updated on Thursday and we’ll see if the Globes alter those picks in any way.

Let’s get to it!

Best Motion Picture (Drama)

A Star Is Born

BlacKkKlansman

Black Panther

First Man

If Beale Street Could Talk

Alternate – Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Wild Card – The Mule

Best Motion Picture (Musical/Comedy)

Crazy Rich Asians

The Favourite

Green Book

Mary Poppins Returns

Vice

Alternate – Eighth Grade

Wild Card – Private Life

Best Director

Bradley Cooper, A Star Is Born

Alfonso Cuaron, Roma

Barry Jenkins, If Beale Street Could Talk

Yorgos Lanthimos, The Favourite

Spike Lee, BlacKkKlansman

Alternate – Peter Farrelly, Green Book

Wild Card – Damien Chazelle, First Man

Best Actor (Drama)

Bradley Cooper, A Star Is Born

Willem Dafoe, At Eternity’s Gate

Ryan Gosling, First Man

Ethan Hawke, First Reformed

Rami Malek, Bohemian Rhapsody

Alternate – Clint Eastwood, The Mule

Wild Card – Lucas Hedges, Boy Erased

Best Actress (Drama)

Yalitza Aparicio, Roma

Glenn Close, The Wife

Viola Davis, Widows

Lady Gaga, A Star Is Born

Melissa McCarthy, Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Alternate – Julia Roberts, Ben Is Back

Wild Card – Toni Collette, Hereditary

Best Actor (Musical/Comedy)

Christian Bale, Vice

Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mary Poppins Returns

Viggo Mortensen, Green Book

Robert Redford, The Old Man & The Gun

Nick Robinson, Love, Simon

Alternate – John C. Reilly, Stan & Ollie

Wild Card – Ryan Reynolds, Deadpool 2

Best Actress (Musical/Comedy)

Emily Blunt, Mary Poppins Returns

Olivia Colman, The Favourite

Elsie Fisher, Eighth Grade

Charlize Theron, Tully

Constance Wu, Crazy Rich Asians

Alternate – Regina Hall, Support the Girls

Wild Card – Kathryn Hahn, Private Life

Best Supporting Actor

Mahershala Ali, Green Book

Timothee Chalamet, Beautiful Boy

Adam Driver, BlacKkKlansman

Sam Elliot, A Star Is Born

Richard E. Grant, Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Alternate – Nicholas Hoult, The Favourite

Wild Card – Michael B. Jordan, Black Panther

Best Supporting Actress

Amy Adams, Vice

Claire Foy, First Man

Regina King, If Beale Street Could Talk

Emma Stone, The Favourite

Rachel Weisz, The Favourite

Alternate – Nicole Kidman, Boy Erased

Wild Card – Michelle Yeoh, Crazy Rich Asians

Best Animated Feature Film

Incredibles 2

Isle of Dogs

Mirai

Ralph Breaks the Internet

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Alternate – Smallfoot

Wild Card – The Grinch

Best Foreign Language Film

Cold War

Girl

Never Look Away

Roma

Shoplifters

Alternate – Capernaum

Wild Card – I Am Not a Witch

Best Screenplay

A Star Is Born

The Favourite

If Beale Street Could Talk

Roma

Vice

Alternate – Green Book

Wild Card – First Reformed

Best Original Score

BlacKkKlansman

First Man

If Beale Street Could Talk

Mary Poppins Returns

Mary Queen of Scots

Alternate – Widows

Wild Card – Suspiria

Best Original Song

“All the Stars” from Black Panther

“Girl in the Movies” from Dumplin’

“The Place Where Lost Things Go” from Mary Poppins Returns

“The Shallow” from A Star Is Born

“Trip a Little Light Fantastic” from Mary Poppins Returns

Alternate – “I’ll Never Love Again” from A Star Is Born

Wild Card – “A Place Called Slaughter Race” from Ralph Breaks the Internet

And that equates to the following number of nominations for each picture:

6 Nominations

The Favourite

5 Nominations

A Star Is Born, If Beale Street Could Talk, Mary Poppins Returns

4 Nominations

BlacKkKlansman, First Man, Roma, Vice

3 Nominations

Green Book

2 Nominations

Can You Ever Forgive Me?, Crazy Rich Asians

1 Nomination

Black Panther, At Eternity’s Gate, First Reformed, Bohemian Rhapsody, The Wife, Widows, The Old Man & The Gun, Love, Simon, Eighth Grade, Tully, Beautiful Boy, Incredibles 2, Isle of Dogs, Mirai, Ralph Breaks the Internet, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Cold War, Never Look Away, Shoplifters, Mary Queen of Scots

I’ll have reaction up on Thursday with updated Oscar picks later that day!

Roma Takes New York

One of the oldest critics group weighed in on the best of the year this morning as the New York Film Critics Circle bestowed their honors. And the writers of the Big Apple clearly took to Roma, which was victorious for Best Picture, Director (Alfonso Cuaron), and Cinematography.

There’s little doubt the Mexican drama will get a nomination at the Oscars. However, the NYFCC top prize certainly doesn’t ensure a win at the big race. Far from it. You have to go back to 2011 since the Oscar and NYFCC recipients matched – The Artist. 

Roma has held the #2 spot in my estimated nominees for weeks behind A Star Is Born. For now, I don’t see that changing.

For Best Actor, Ethan Hawke won for First Reformed and I don’t expect that will be the last of his critics group trophies. Hawke has established himself as a real threat to make the final 5 for the Academy. Additionally, the Screenplay award went to Reformed, furthering boosting the prospect of Paul Schrader getting his first Oscar nod in Original Screenplay.

The NYFCC is known for throwing a surprise in the acting categories (think Tiffany Haddish for Girls Trip) and this year was no different. Best Actress went to Regina Hall for the acclaimed indie dramedy Support the Girls. While the exposure here only helps, the Actress race is very crowded and Hall’s inclusion seems quite unlikely at the moment.

Richard E. Grant took Supporting Actor for Can You Ever Forgive Me? in what is shaping up to be a genuine three-person race between him, Mahershala Ali (Green Book), and Sam Elliot (A Star Is Born). Regina King got Supporting Actress for If Beale Street Could Talk as she appears to be the soft front-runner, with Amy Adams (Vice) and the women of The Favourite (Emma Stone, Rachel Weisz) lurking.

In down-the-line categories, Animated Feature went to Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (which may just establish itself as a threat to Incredibles 2). Minding the Gap got the Non-Fiction race and Cold War took Best Foreign Language Film.

Other groups will be weighing in soon and I’ll have all the coverage right here!

Gotham Awards Reaction 2018

It’s only mid-October, but the first significant precursor of awards season rolled out nominations today in the form of the Gotham Awards. If you’re not familiar, the Gothams honor independent film in a limited number of categories.

While not as prolific as the Golden Globes or SAG nominations, there has been a correlation with movies and performers nominated here getting Oscar attention. Let’s take a look at the past five Gotham awards nominees and how they matched up with the Academy:

In 2013, 12 Years a Slave was nominated for Best Feature and went on to win the Oscar. In the Best Actor race, eventual Academy winner Matthew McConaughey (Dallas Buyers Club) was victorious here and Chiwetel Ejiofor (Slave) also was nominated for both. Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine) was nominated here and went on to win the gold statue. It’s worth noting that the Gothams do not have supporting acting categories (we’ll get to that in a minute).

In 2014, three movies that got Best Picture nods were honored here: Birdman (Oscar winner), Boyhood, and The Grand Budapest Hotel. In the acting races, Michael Keaton (Birdman) and Oscar/Gotham winner Julianne Moore (Still Alice) were included.

For 2015, no Best Actor nominees for the Gothams correlated to Oscars. However, there were actress match-ups with Oscar winner Brie Larson (Room) and Cate Blanchett (Carol). Also – the Gotham and Oscar Best Picture winners were the same – Spotlight.

That happened once again in 2016 as Moonlight won the Oscar and the Gotham. Manchester by the Sea was also nominated for both. Casey Affleck’s work in that film won Best Actor at both ceremonies. For Actress, Natalie Portman as Jackie got double nods.

Last year, two Gotham Film nominees got Best Picture recognition: Call Me by Your Name and Get Out. In Actor, it was Daniel Kaluuya for Get Out as a double recipient. In Actress, same goes for Saoirse Ronan (Lady Bird) and Margot Robbie (I, Tonya). And coming back to the fact that there’s no supporting races, Willem Dafoe received an Actor nomination at the Gothams for The Florida Project while being recognized for Supporting Actor at the Oscars.

So, as you can see, there’s usually some overlap for the two ceremonies. And that brings us to today’s nominees and how I think that overlap will occur this year:

In the Gotham Best Feature race, the nominees are:

The Favourite

First Reformed

If Beale Street Could Talk

Madeline’s Madeline

The River

The average number of Gotham/Oscar film nominees lately has been two and that likely holds true here with The Favourite and If Beale Street Could Talk. The other three are highly unlikely to get Academy recognition.

In the Best Actor race, the nominees are:

Adam Driver, BlacKkKlansman

Ben Foster, Leave No Trace

Richard E. Grant, Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Ethan Hawke, First Reformed

LaKeith Stanfield, Sorry to Bother You

Grant is probably this year’s Willem Dafoe and will be recognized by the Academy in Supporting Actor. Adam Driver falls in the same category, but is more of a long shot. Stanfield is out of the running for Actor at the Oscars, while Foster and Hawke remain possibilities. That said – like 2015 – this could well be a year where there’s no matches.

That is not the case with Actress and the nominees are:

Glenn Close, The Wife

Toni Collette, Hereditary

Kathryn Hahn, Private Life

Regina Hall, Support the Girls

Michelle Pfeiffer, Where is Kyra?

Collette is a possible nominee, but it’s Close that seems a near lock for Oscar attention and a possible win. The others? Not so much.

Finally, a Special Jury prize was initiated that honors the three actresses from The Favourite. That would be Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, and Rachel Weisz and all three could find themselves in the mix at Oscar time. The Gothams did the same jury designation for 2014’s Foxcatcher and 2015’s Spotlight. 

So there you have it! My take on how the Gotham Awards will relate to the biggest awards show of all…

 

Oscar Watch: The Hate U Give

Nineteen year old actress Amandla Stenberg is most known for her work as Rue in the original Hunger Games and the 2017 romance Everything, Everything (she also headlined this summer’s box office flop The Darkest Minds). The Toronto Film Festival has screened The Hate U Give, George Tillman Jr.’s crime drama where Stenberg’s character witnesses the shooting of her childhood best friend.

Early reviews suggest it could be a breakout role for the performer. The supporting cast includes Regina Hall, Common, and Anthony Mackie. The pic is based on last year’s YA novel by Angie Thomas. Tillman Jr. has seen many of his pics achieve financial success, such as Soul Food, Barbershop and Notorious. Awards recognition has alluded him.

Bottom line: The Hate U Give will need to get noticed by audiences in order for that recognition to have any chance. While reviews are strong, I’d say Oscar nods are a long shot and that includes Stenberg.

The film is slated for release on October 19. My Oscar Watch posts will continue…