Kaya Scodelario and Barry Pepper might be the two human headlining actors in Crawl, but it’s a bunch of murderous alligators that are the star attraction. The horror pic takes place after a hurricane with the reptiles terrorizing survivors. Alexandre Aja directs.
Coproduced by Sam Raimi, Crawl would love to bring in the kind of coin that recent shark tales have brought in over recent summers. 2016’s TheShallows made around $16 million for its start and the following year’s 47MetersDown took in just over $11 million.
With a minor reported $17 million budget, Crawl appears set to be a profitable venture for distributor Paramount. I’ll say this manages to come close to its price tag in its first three days of release.
Blogger’s Note (08/08/18): On the eve of its premiere, I am bumping my estimate up from $19.7 million to $22.7 million
The second weekend of August is one that Warner Bros hopes is their Shark Week when The Meg opens. Focused on a group of scientists tracking a 75-foot creature sporting massive jaws, the film stars Jason Statham, Li Bingbing, Rainn Wilson, Ruby Rose, Winston Chao, and Cliff Curtis. Jon Turteltaub, whose had a lengthy directorial career including the National Treasure pics, is behind the camera.
Other than the giant shark itself, the most eye-popping thing about The Meg is its reported $150 million budget. This is an American/Chinese co-production and it better hope for generous earnings overseas.
As for its stateside expectations, it can be dangerous to underestimate audiences shark love. Two summers ago, The Shallows debuted to a better than anticipated $16.8 million. Last summer, 47 Meters Down (which was originally slated for a TV premiere) took in $11.2 million for its start.
There’s always breakout potential in this genre, but I’m looking at The Meg managing to hit Shallows numbers and a bit more.
Another shark tale swims into theaters next weekend when 47 Meters Down debuts. Johannes Roberts directs the killer shark pic with Mandy Moore, Matthew Modine, and Claire Holt among the human chum.
The horror thriller has experienced an interesting journey to the big screen. Original distributor Dimension Films slated Meters for a VOD premiere in August 2016 before Entertainment Studios stepped in, bought the rights, and decided a theatrical release was in order.
Why the change? One has to surmise that last summer’s success of the The Shallows (perhaps coupled with TV’s Sharknado ratings) helped. Another benefit: star Moore has seen her visibility rise with her hit TV drama “This Is Us”.
How will this translate to its box office potential? 47 Meters Down should certainly rank fourth among the newbies out next weekend – well behind Cars 3, All Eyez on Me, and Rough Night. I’ll predict a floor of about $5 million with a ceiling of $8 million. My gut has it on the lower end of that scale.
47 Meters Down opening weekend prediction: $6.1 million
Jaume Collet-Serra’s TheShallows marks the director’s second feature of making claustrophobic thrillers in vast open areas. In Non–Stop with Liam Neeson (he also made Unknown and RunAllNight with him), it was the sky but confined to an aircraft. Here it’s the clear blue waters of Mexico but confined to Blake Lively on a wounded whale and a rock and a buoy as a shark terrorizes her.
Lively is Texas med student Nancy, who’s on vacay in our southern neighbor but not for the reasons of most coeds. Her mom has recently passed and she’s seeking out a secluded beach that was special to her. Nancy locates it and it’s certainly gorgeous. It’s also a locale that a great white finds special to it.
And so begins Nancy’s hour and a half battle with the beast. This is largely a one woman show and Ms. Lively provides a sturdy performance. The other humans in the cast appear sparingly. Some are chum. We also get a brief glimpse of our protagonist’s dad and little sister via cell video. Nancy is also joined much of the way by a wounded seagull (she crowns him Steven) and that little bird is her Wilson for awhile.
The backstory involving the deceased mom and family issues isn’t exactly necessary, yet it doesn’t often slow down the momentum. Any shark tale will be compared to the genre’s masterpiece and I’m of course referring to the Sharknado franchise. In all seriousness, The Shallows does take its cue from Jaws in showing its other star rather sparingly. When it does, it looks a bit too CG at times. Still, Lively’s commanding presence as she plays “Shark! Who Goes There?” (I’m sorry) creates just enough suspense to make this recommendable.
Fin. Sorry with the puns again. Sharko Polo? Just watch it. It’s pretty good B movie escapism.
The Fourth of July weekend is here at the box office as three new titles make their debuts over the four day frame: Steven Spielberg’s The BFG, horror three-quel The Purge: Election Year, and adventure pic The Legend of Tarzan. You can find my detailed prediction posts on each here:
While I have all three earning over $20 million over the long weekend, I don’t expect any of them will manage to top the third weekend of Finding Dory. My estimates reflect a belief that BFG will have a so-so opening, Purge a fairly healthy one albeit under its predecessors, and Tarzan a rather disastrous one.
As for Independence Day: Resurgence in its sophomore weekend, one might think it could hold up well due to… you know, it being Independence Day weekend. I’m not so sure. It had a very lackluster roll out (more on that below) and its weak B Cinemascore grade indicates a rough road ahead.
And with that, my top five predictions (including three and four day projections) for the weekend:
Predicted Gross: $35.6 million (Friday to Sunday), $44 million (Friday to Monday)
2. The BFG
Predicted Gross: $26.6 million (Friday to Sunday), $33.2 million (Friday to Monday)
3. The Purge: Election Year
Predicted Gross: $21.7 million (Friday to Sunday), $25.5 million (Friday to Monday)
4. Independence Day: Resurgence
Predicted Gross: $17.8 million (Friday to Sunday), $22.8 million (Friday to Monday)
5. The Legend of Tarzan
Predicted Gross: $17.5 million (Friday to Sunday), $22 million (Friday to Monday)
BOX OFFICE RESULTS (JUNE 24-26)
Finding Dory had no problem whatsoever swimming atop the charts as it grossed $72.9 million in weekend #2, just above my $69.8M projection. The Pixar smash has earned $286 million thus far.
20 years ago, Independence Day ruled the summer of 1996. Its long gestating sequel Resurgence? Not so much as it premiered to just $41 million, way below my $63.5M estimate. Here is yet another summer example of a sequel performing well below expectations and this one classifies as a bonafide bomb.
Central Intelligence held up well in its sophomore weekend with $18.2 million for third, ahead of my $15.2M prediction for a two week total of $69 million.
Blake Lively had a nice weekend as her shark tale The Shallows came in well above expectations at #4 with $16.8 million – lapping my $10.4M forecast. Considering its budget is just a reported $17 million, this is a nice size hit for Mrs. Deadpool.
The Conjuring 2 was fifth with $7.7 million for an $86 million tally. I incorrectly had it outside the top five.
That’s because the news was not so good for Matthew McConaughey as his critically panned Civil War drama Free State of Jones stalled with $7.5 million in sixth, under my $12.7M prediction.
And that’ll do it for now, folks! Until next time…
Let’s get Free State and The Shallows out the way first, as I expect both to open in the low double digits and likely place fourth and fifth. I look for Central Intelligence to lose over half its opening audience, which should place it firmly in third.
The real battle could be for the top spot between current champ Finding Dory and Resurgence. I’m anticipating that Dory won’t quite drop 50%, which gives it the edge in my view.
And with that, my top 5 predictions for the weekend:
Predicted Gross: $69.8 million (representing a drop of 48%)
2. Independence Day: Resurgence
Predicted Gross: $63.5 million
3. Central Intelligence
Predicted Gross: $15.2 million (representing a drop of 57%)
4. Free State of Jones
Predicted Gross: $12.7 million
5. The Shallows
Predicted Gross: $10.4 million
Box Office Results (June 17-19)
The Cleveland Cavaliers weren’t the only ones making history this weekend as Disney/Pixar’s FindingDory had the largest animated debut in box office history with $135 million. This easily swam past my $127.3M prediction and topped the $121 million previous record held by ShrektheThird. The sequel to the 2003 classic provided a much needed boost to a summer that is lagging behind the previous one.
CentralIntelligence, as expected, had a sturdy second place debut with $35.5 million, comparable to my $34.1M projection. The debut is in line with recent premieres for costar Kevin Hart and having Dwayne Johnson at his side didn’t hurt.
Holdovers in their sophomore frames held the three-five spots. All experienced precipitous declines and all came in below my estimates. TheConjuring2 was third with $14.8 million (I said $20.3M) for a $71 million total. NowYouSeeMe2 was fourth with $9.3 million (I said $12.5M) for a gross of $41 million. Warcraft was fifth with $7.2 million (I said $8.9M). It’s made $38 million.
It’s Woman vs. Shark as The Shallows swims its way into theaters next weekend. Providing a considerably different aquatic experience than Finding Dory, the horror thriller pits bikini clad Blake Lively in the fight of her life against a big ol’ great white.
Jaume Collet-Serra directs and this is his first time in four films that he’s not working with Liam Neeson (he made Unknown, Non-Stop, and Run All Night). Columbia Pictures is hoping its simple premise and effective trailers will get horror buffs and Shark Week supporters to turn out.
Yet I don’t expect this will take a significant bite out of the box office. All shark movies are measured against Jaws (the original summer blockbuster). Those are big fins to fill and my prediction actually has this just outdoing 2010’s Piranha remake.
The Shallows opening weekend prediction: $10.4 million
For my Independence Day: Resurgence prediction, click here: