‘Ready Player One’ Looks to Top the Box Office This Weekend

It should be a solid weekend at the box office, as Steven Spielberg returns to the SFX-driven, fantastical storytelling for which he’s been beloved by a generation with Ready Player One. Will his latest top the box office? Here’s our prediction:

Ready Player One is an adaptation of the bestselling novel by Ernest Cline, set in 2045 in a Virtual Reality world known as the OASIS. The trailers have played heavy on 1980s nostalgia, including Steven Spielberg’s own work from that decade, and the hype is certainly there for the film.

Playing against Ready Player One is the lack of any big name stars to help get audiences into theatres this weekend, though there’s an argument being made by critics lately that stars don’t open films anymore – look at the recent lack of success for films top-lined (an aging) Tom Cruise, (an unproven outside of Marvel actor who works well in supporting roles) Chris Hemsworth, and (an arguably overexposed) Jennifer Lawrence. I’d argue that, this weekend, it’s Spielberg who’s the real star of Ready Player One, and that’s who audiences will likely respond to.

Along with the must-see vibe of Spielberg returning to blockbuster-style filmmaking for the first time in years, critics have been kind to Ready Player One, which is sitting at 78% fresh at Rotten Tomatoes. With all this in its favour, the film should have no problem hitting the top spot at the box office with a strong number. Look for Ready Player One to debut with $45 million.

As for the rest of the top five, there’s a new Tyler Perry film hitting theatres, and the director always has a built-in audience that turns out. Look for Acrimony to debut in second place with $18 million. Black Panther will be in third place with $11 million, while last week’s number one film, Pacific Rim: Uprising will experience a significant fall, as it settles for fourth with $10.5 million. I Can Only Imagine will close things out in fifth place with $10 million.

So, to recap here are our predictions:

1) Ready Player One – $45 million
2) Tyler Perry’s Acrimony – $18 million
3) Black Panther – $11 million
4) Pacific Rim: Uprising – $10.5 million
5) I Can Only Imagine – $10 million

Be sure to check back on Sunday to see how the weekend turns out!

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