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Will Evan be Almighty, or just Alrighty?

June 21st, 2007

A trio of new releases this week are led by Evan Almighty, but while that film has a clear shot at first place, the real question is whether the overall box office can avoid falling behind last year's pace. Last year's top 10 pulled in just under $125 million, which is certainly within reach, but far from a sure thing.

Evan Almighty is the latest sequel to a Jim Carrey movie not starring Jim Carrey. The previous two films both bombed. This film should fare much better with a hot star and a prime release date. Unfortunately, despite these factors, it won't do well enough to be considered a real success, as its production budget is huge. Part of the problem is the history of these types of sequels as this has caused almost universally negative buzz, buzz that has been backed up by the reviews. Granted, 21% positive isn't the worst reviews for a number one film this year, but it is sure to hurt the film's legs. The over / under is at $37.5 million while overall the film should cross $100 million, but not much more. This is substantially less than early expectations, but the reviews matched the buzz so that was bound to happen.

Agree? Disagree? Noticing a lot of cloud cover for this time of year? Then check out our latest box office contest.

Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer will suffer a massive drop-off this weekend, with roughly 60% being the figure thrown around the most. This would give the film a sophomore stint of $23 million while lifting its box office total to just over $100 million. After that, its next milestone is matching its production budget of $130 million while if it beats expectations this weekend, $150 million isn't out of the question.

Next up is 1408, the latest Stephen King adaptation to hit theaters. Too many Stephen King adaptations turn out to be... well... crap. In the last decade, only one such film has done well with critics, but 1408 has changed that. Its 83% positive score is the best since Dolores Claiborne and one of the best wide releases of the year. (It seems many critics are as happy as I am to see a movie that builds its scares through mood, unlike the, 'torture porn' we've been subjected to over the past few years.) How will that affect the film's opening box office? Sadly, it won't. Look for $16 million over the next three days. However, it should help the film's legs as word-of-mouth travels and it could earn $50 to $60 million overall, while crossing $100 million worldwide and earning a profit early in its home market run.

Ocean's Thirteen continues its pursuit of $100 million and should cut the deficit there in half. Look for $11 million over the weekend for a total of $91 million, leaving it about a week from hitting $100 million.

Knocked Up won't have to wait that long. In fact it will reach $100 million on Friday, becoming the eighth film from 2007 to reach that milestone. Over the full weekend, Knocked Up should pull in roughly $10 million for a total of $108 million, which should be enough to show a profit regardless of the film's performance internationally or on the home market.

The final wide release of the week is A Mighty Heart. The film stars Angelina Jolie, who has not had a strong record when it comes to politically tinged films. The Good Shepherd missed expectations while Beyond Borders bombed outright. On the other hand, neither of those films earned good reviews while A Mighty Heart has earned 81% positive so far. That said, the film is only playing in 1,355 theaters and with a ad campaign that hasn't exactly been overwhelming. The film should earn between $5,000 and $6,000 per theater, giving it a predicted opening of just under $7 million to just over $8 million with the lower end slightly more likely. Look for $7 million over the weekend and $25 million in total.


Filed under: Knocked Up, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, Ocean's Thirteen, Evan Almighty, A Mighty Heart, 1408