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Spidey Has His Eye on Jack Sparrow

May 3rd, 2007

With the start of the summer blockbuster season, all eyes are on Spider-man 3. But the real question isn't whether Spider-man 3 will win the box office race, there's very little doubt that it will. No, the real question is whether Spider-man 3 can break Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest's opening weekend record.

Spider-Man 3 The first record the film could break is biggest midnight showing, which is currently held by Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith at an impressive $16.5 million. Early reports have the midnight showings sold-out across the country, which is a great sign, but Revenge of the Sith had many theaters putting on two or even three shows to accommodate demand, so this record seems safe. It could still crack $10 million, which is amazing by any definition of the word, but not record-breaking.

The next record is biggest single day at $55,830,600, currently held by Dead Man's Chest. This will be a very close race with Spider-man 3 looking to become only the third film to crack $50 million in a single day. While it should manage that feat, Dead Man's Chest's seems safe. However, the record for biggest single day in May should fall, with Revenge of the Sith and its $50,013,859 knocked off of top spot.

The big record that is in jeopardy is biggest opening weekend. The target is $135,634,554, and for some, anything less will spell defeat for Spider-man 3. The film is tracking at roughly $130 million, plus or minus about 5%, meaning on the low end it should earn $123.5 million while on the high end it could take in $136.5 million. (Higher or lower is still possible, but would be a bit of a surprise.) However, not only is the film opening in a record-breaking 4,253 theatres, it is also opening in 84 IMAX theaters domestically (and 34 more internationally), and the premium pricing for those tickets could be the edge Spider-Man needs to overtake Dead Man's Chest.

There are some troubling signs for the film as well, though. For instance, the reviews are a lot lower than the other two films earned. In fact, it's barely over the overall positive level. However, that shouldn't affect the film's opening weekend prospects by that much. (But the film's long term potential is being downgraded somewhat.)

I think Spider-Man 3 will far short of the weekend record, but fall short by the narrowest of margins, taking in $135 million over the weekend. Anything less than $125 million will be a surprise while the film would have to earn more than $150 million to shock me on the high end.

Agree? Disagree? Already have your tickets for the midnight showing... and Friday... and Saturday and Sunday? Then check out our latest box office contest.

Also opening this weekend is the poker movie, Lucky You, which is gambling on overflow to help it over $10 million this weekend. Overflow is the term used when people go to the movie theaters to see one movie only to find all the showings are sold-out, so they check out another movie instead. Online ticket purchasing has decreased this phenomenon since you have your tickets before you get to the theater, but it still has some effect. Lucky You, being the new movie, will benefit the most and while its reviews are far from great, they are not so bad that word-of-mouth will kill it either. Look for just under $10 million over the weekend and a solid second place.

As for the rest of the top five, there's little to be excited about. Disturbia will finally be knocked out of first place, but with $5 million it will be closing in on $60 million during its run and well on its way to profitability. Fracture will add just under $4 million for a running tally of about $27 million while it will finish its run with roughly $35 million. The final film in the top five should be The Invisible with approximately $3.5 million over the weekend and $13 million in total. A low production budget might save the film from losing too much money.

On a side note, Hot Fuzz is currently tracking to finish in sixth place, which would be the third week in a row that the film has placed sixth. Not that there's any significance to finishing sixth three weeks in a row. Forget I brought it up.


Filed under: Spider-Man 3, Disturbia, Fracture, Hot Fuzz, The Invisible, Lucky You