Marvel’s merry band of mutants return to the movies this weekend, but just how well they’ll perform is something even Professor X couldn’t predict. I’m going to give it a shot.
On the heels of the blockbuster 2006 film X-Men: The Last Stand ($234 million in North America) and the slightly less blockbustery X-Men Origins: Wolverine ($179 million) from 2009 comes what some are calling a reboot and others view as a prequel – X-Men: First Class. However you choose to look at, the truth is that the Matthew Vaughan directed film has a lot of things not in its favour. Neither the previous franchise entries scored much love from critics or cinema-goers, regardless of their box office take-home. Missing in action in this latest edition are favourite characters like Wolverine, Kitty Pryde, Colossus, Cyclops, Jean Grey and on and on. Add to the fact that there hasn’t been much time between films to make audiences miss the franchise and I really think you’re left with a big question mark as to how X-Men: First Class will perform. On the plus side, advance word has been stellar for this 1960’s period piece and the trailers for the film have gotten increasingly better. On that note, my prediction is that X-Men: First Class will have a solid but not spectacular start of $65 million.
The rest of the top 5 will consist of repeat offenders:
Look for The Hangover 2 to have a pretty large drop from it’s incredible four day debut weekend
to land at number 2 with $40 million, still a great number no matter how you look at it.
I don’t think audiences are responding to the animated sequel Kung Fu Panda 2 in any sort of large way to keep it strong. I’m predicting a third place finish with an underwhelming $22 million. There’s even a chance another sequel might outperform it.
It’s funny that, even though Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides has grossed nearly $650 million worldwide, it’s still considered to be a letdown because of it’s performance in North America. Look for a fourth place showing and a $20 million gross in it’s third weekend as it inches its way to the $200 million mark.
Rounding out the top 5 will be another comedy hit, Bridesmaids. I’m predicting $12 million, and the R-rated comedy should safely cross the $100 million mark by the time the weekend is out.
Check back on Sunday to see how the weekend box office turns out!