J.J. Abrams and Steven Spielberg team up as director and producer respectively to bring the sci-fi film Super 8 to theatres this weekend in what is surprisingly not a very competitive weekend at the box office. The only other major new release is a kids film called Judy Moody and the NOT Bummer Summer, which I’m betting that most people have not even heard of. The question of the weekend is how well will Super 8 do at the box office and will it be able to dethrone X-men: First Class? Here’s how I predict the weekend will go down:
Super 8 is a story about a mysterious train crash in a small town in the late 70’s. After the crash, things start happening to the people of the small town (mainly they disappear), and people think that there was someone or something in the crash that escaped and is responsible for the crisis the town now faces. A young group of friends were recording a movie on a Super 8 camera when the crash happened and their film could be the key to solving the mystery. The film features some actors that are recognizable, like Kyle Chandler from the TV show Friday Night Lights, but there is no superstar in the cast. I don’t think that will hurt the films chances as it is being sold on the star power of writer/director J.J. Abrams and producer Steven Spielberg. The only film I could really compare Super 8 to was a film that J.J. Abrams produced and that was Cloverfield. Here’s how that film did on its opening weekend:
Cloverfield - $40 million opening weekend
Considering that Cloverfield opened in January of 2008 and was able to gross $40 million, Super 8 should be able to surpass that. Reviews have been excellent with Rotten Tomatoes listing Super 8 at 82% positive as of this writing. This well definitely help attract audiences who were unsure about the film, as the marketing campaign didn’t reveal much about the plot, but the good reviews will make them feel that their curiosity will be rewarded when they see it. Opening in 3,379 theatres, I’m predicting that Super 8 will gross $55 million and finish in 1st place.
Among last weekends holdovers that will still be in the top five this weekend, here are my predictions:
X-Men: First Class will not be the #1 film for the second weekend in a row, but the film should have a steady hold. Much has been made about how low the opening weekend for the film was compared to the rest of the films in the X-Men franchise, but X-Men: First Class is receiving the best reviews of the franchise since X2: X-Men United. For comparison purposes, here’s how the franchise has done on its second weekend:
X-Men – 56.9% second weekend drop
X2: X-Men United – 53.2% second weekend drop
X-Men: The Last Stand – 66.9% second weekend drop
X-Men Origins: Wolverine – 69% second weekend drop
Average Second Weekend Drop – 61.5%
There’s no way that X-Men: First Class has a drop near that average, so I’m predicting that the film will drop 49% in its second weekend, giving it a gross of $28.1 million and a 2nd place finish.
The Hangover Part II suffered a big drop on its second weekend, but that was to be expected because of the huge opening weekend gross it had. Things should steady for the film this weekend as I’m predicting a drop of 52% for The Hangover Part II, which will give it a gross of $15 million and a 3rd place finish.
Kung Fu Panda 2 hopes to have a strong hold this weekend as it will still be going after the family audience, but it will lose the young adult audience to Super 8. Still, family films tend to hold strong in the summer, and Kung Fu Panda 2 is definitely hoping to have strong holds for the next two weekends, as Cars 2 comes out after that and the run of Kung Fu Panda 2 will be over at the box office. I’m predicting that the animated adventure will drop 41% this weekend, giving the film a gross of $14 million and a 4th place finish.
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and Bridesmaids will be battling for the last spot in the top five. This is a tough battle as I think that Bridesmaids will have the stronger hold this weekend, but Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is a franchise film. However, it’s a franchise film that has suffered big drops every weekend and it will be the film that is most affected by the release of Super 8. Therefore, I’m predicting that Bridesmaids will drop 33%, giving it a gross of $8 million and a 5th place finish, which barely edges out Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides as I’m predicting a 56% drop for that film, which will give it a gross of $7.9 million gross and a 6th place finish.
Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer is a film based on the popular children’s book series but it is not getting a lot of support from Relativity, which is only releasing it in 2,524 theatres. It currently has a 12% positive rating at Rotten Tomatoes as of this writing and I predict that it will finish in 8th place with a gross of $5 million.
In limited release the following films are opening: Bride Flight, The Trip, The Troll Hunter and Viva Riva!
All four films have ratings above 75% positive at Rotten Tomatoes as of this writing.
So to recap, here are my predictions:
- Super 8 - $55 million
- X-Men: First Class - $28.1 million
- The Hangover Part II - $15 million
- Kung Fu Panda 2 - $14 million
- Bridesmaids - $8 million
Think you can do better than me in making predictions? Go to http://www.boxofficemojo.com and sign up for “The Box Office Derby”. Make your predictions and see if you can beat the man with the I.D. “ScottyG”.
Remember to check back on Sunday to see how I did!