It’s the Memorial Day Long Weekend in the U.S.A., so we should see a major turnout for movies. What makes this interesting is that we have a major battle between two major releases, which doesn’t happen all that much. I think both are unnecessary sequels, but money talks, and money means sequels get made. It’s Terminator: Salvations vs. Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian. It’s Warner Bros. vs. 20th Century Fox. Let’s get it on!
In this corner, wearing black trunks with gold trim; we have Terminator: Salvation, which officially opened on Thursday to get a head start on the weekend. It has had a lot of buzz going for it, and a very steady marketing campaign over the last 365 days. It’s all led to the question “Can the Terminator franchise continue to generate box office?” The answer Warner Bros. is hoping for is “YES”! Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines opened with $72.4 million in 2003 over a five day period. Christian Bale is the lead, and he showed in The Dark Knight, that you can make a PG-13 movie that feels more mature in tone [one could argue that it could have been an “R” rated film if their was a little more gore]. The one thing that bothers me is that the film is PG-13. No Terminator film has been rated other than “R”, and quite frankly Terminator films should be “R”. Reviews have mainly said that there are lots of great action sequences, but the story is weak. I’m going to predict that Terminator: Salvation opens with $62 million from Friday to Sunday.
And in the other corner, wearing white stripes with red trim; we have Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian. Although I was not a fan of the first film, it was a monstrous hit in the winter of 2006, grossing $250.9 million, so a sequel was inevitable. What makes this oneinteresting to me is that it has the stronger cast of supporting actors, is a sequel that was only 3 years removed from the first one, and appeals to wider audience [mainly kids, women, and families]. Terminator: Salvation appeals mainly to men. With the long weekend in the U.S., more families will go see this film, and because it is the only family film in the marketplace, I’m predicting this will be the #1 film over Friday-Sunday grossing $68 million.
Dance Flick comes from a new group of Wayans, and I think it will do all right at the box office. To me the parody genre is on life support with such bombs as Disaster Movie, Meet the Spartans, and Superhero Movie, but with the Wayans brand name behind this film, it will do better than people expect. I’m going to predict an opening weekend of $18 million.
Star Trek will suffer a 30% drop and gross $30.1 million, while Angels and Demons will fall from being the number 1 movie with a 48% drop to $24 million.
So, here are my weekend predictions [Friday-Sunday only]:
1) Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian – $68 million
2) Terminator: Salvation – $62 million
3) Star Trek – $30.1 million
4) Angels and Demons – $24 million
5) Dance Flick – $18 million
Check back on the weekend to see how I do!