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Will there be any Thanksgiving Turkeys at the Box Office?

November 24th, 2004

Thanksgiving long weekend is one of the busiest long weekends of the year and is usually a boon to new releases and family films. And while the later should do well, the former could struggle as they are both being savaged by critics.

I'm going to take a bit of a risk with my predictions this week and pick The Incredibles for top spot on the charts with $27.5 million over the three day weekend and $37.5 million over the 5-day weekend. Simple reason this bullish outlook, it's tracking better than Monsters Inc. and Elf and both of those films saw significant increases over the Thanksgiving weekend. Also, the two new films are looking disastrous, so that helps on that front. (Granted, I thought the same thing last weekend and look how that turned out.

Christmas with the Kranks epitomizes all that is wrong with Christmas in November movies. And critically speaking, it is the worst of Tim Allen's career. At the box office, however, it will be another story. Over the five day period the film should compete for top spot, but it will be heavily front-loaded as word of mouth should kill this film quickly. Look for $35 million over the five-day weekend, but just $24 million of that coming from Friday to Sunday.

Thanksgiving weekend will help SpongeBob SquarePants soften its fall to a very respectable $24 million / $31 million this weekend. That's pretty close to first weekend expectations and more than enough to make the film profitable.

Of the returning films in the top five, the one that will be helped out the least by the holidays will be National Treasure, partly due to the target demographic, and partly due to its poor reviews. Even so, the film will manage to beat first week expectations with $22 million / $31 million.

The other new film being released this week is the epic, Alexander. Although in this case the term, 'Epic' merely refers to its running time of 2 hours and 53 minutes. The Sword and Sandal flick is being attacked by critics for numerous offenses including poor acting, bad dialogue, dull action scenes, emotionally unengaging and more. The ad campaign hasn't been nearly as strong, or visible, as expected and it is only opening in 2,445 theatres. All of these are bad omens for the film's chances at success this weekend as it should bring in $20 million / $28 million.

Finding Neverland's expansion continues this weekend as the film will play in just over 500 theatres and should finish in 10th place with $3 million from Friday to Sunday and $5 million overall.

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Filed under: The Incredibles, National Treasure, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Movie, Christmas with the Kranks, Finding Neverland, Alexander