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Thursday, August 28, 2014



Weekend Predictions: Will Neighbors Have a Good Opening?

Neighbors poster

It could be an interesting weekend at the box office as The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is expected to fall far enough that Neighbors could win the box office race. That certainly would be a boost for the new release's box office chances. Earning first place does provide a lot of free publicity. The other two wide releases coming out this week are not expected to be major players at the box office. I've heard some buzz that Mom's Night Out could be a sleeper hit. On the other hand, Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return might not open above the Mendoza Line. This weekend last year, Iron Man 3 led the way with $72.53 million, which is more than all three wide releases will make. In fact, last year's second place film, The Great Gatsby earning $50.09 million, which might be more than all three wide releases make this weekend. On the other hand, depth will be better this time around and that should mitigate the situation a little bit.

Neighbors is an R-rated comedy, which is a specific genre that has done rather well over the past few years. The Other Woman had a weak release date and it still will reach $75 million, more or less, by the time it is done. Neighbors' release date is strong and so are its reviews. Currently, the film's Tomatometer Score is 88% positive, which would be a great score for a dialogue-driven drama aimed at a mature demographic. It is phenomenal for a film like this. There is a small chance this film will top $40 million, while on the low end it could barely earn more than $30 million over the weekend. I think given the star power, the release date, and the reviews, first place and $38 million is a relatively safe bet.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 opened with $91.61 million last weekend, but thanks to its reviews and the Fanboy effect, it will likely not have strong legs. A 60% drop-off is looking likely. The last Spider-man film to open on a Friday, Spider-man 3, fell 62%, despite earning good reviews. If The Amazing Spider-Man 2 were to fall 62%, then it would earn about $35 million this weekend, which sounds about right.

The Other Woman will be pushed into third place with just over $8 million over the weekend pushing its running tally to just over $60 million after three weeks of release. It will be able to cover its entire production budget with its domestic box office, meaning it will break even before it hits the home market.

Heaven is for Real should be next with $6 million over the weekend for a running tally of close to $75 million. Unless the studio spent more on its its P&A budget than I estimated, this will be enough to be profitable.

Mom's Night Out is a female-centric comedy aimed at a faith-based crowd, which is one of the more difficult target demographics to get a strong feel for when it comes to movies. Its trailer was shown ahead of Heaven is for Real, which should boost ticket sales. On the other hand, its reviews are terrible. The film's Tomatometer Score is currently just 21% positive, and dropping, which will likely hurt. The film's theater count is expected to be below 2,000, which will also hurt the film's chances at the box office. Then again, it would only need about $6 million to earn fifth place, which shouldn't be too hard to get and I think it will get there. If it doesn't, then Rio 2 will have one more weekend in the top five.

The final wide release of the week is Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return. The digitally animated film is earning zero positive reviews out of seven currently on Rotten Tomatoes, while the buzz is equal parts quiet and bad. The film is expected to be playing in 2,600 theaters this weekend, but it looks like it will miss the Mendoza Line opening with just under $5 million. If the reports are correct and it cost $70 million to make, then someone will be losing a lot of money.


- C.S.Strowbridge


Date posted: 2014-05-08

Movies 
 Neighbors
 The Amazing Spider-Man 2
 The Other Woman
 Heaven is for Real
 Moms' Night Out
 Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return