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Weekend Estimates: Focus Steals a Modest Win

March 1st, 2015

Focus poster

Will Smith remains a top 20 force on The Numbers Bankability Index, thanks mainly to his leading turns in tentpoles and franchise films. His draw in smaller movies has always been less of a sure thing, even in his heyday. The performance of Focus this weekend is perhaps not as much of a surprise, with Warner Bros. projecting an OK $19.1 million debut for the film—not a terrible number for the time of year, and broadly in line with the openings for Seven Pounds ($14.8m), The Pursuit of Happyness ($26.5m) and Ali ($14.7m).

The weekend’s other wide release, The Lazarus Effect is headed for about $10.6 million, which is a decent performance, particularly considering the film’s reported $5 million budget. Mediocre reviews will probably stop the movie from staying with us for long, although an second life on the home market seems assured.

In limited release, A La Mala will pick $1.44 million from 384 theaters, making it another well-targeted release by Lionsgate for the Spanish-speaking community. Historical thriller ’71 has the best theater average of the weekend with $60,050 projected from four theaters for an average of $15,013.

Several Oscar-winning films get a nice bump this weekend, led by Best Picture winner Birdman, which jumps 125% to $1.975 million for twelfth place. In truth, the film hasn’t been a huge box office draw, with a total that now exceeds $40 million. Still Alice moves into the top 10 this weekend with $2.7 million from 1,318 theaters on the back of Julianne Moore’s Best Actress win. Its $2,045 theater average suggests that it won’t make significant further progress.

- Weekend Estimates

Bruce Nash,

Filed under: Weekend Box Office, The Lazarus Effect, Focus, Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), Still Alice, ’71, A La Mala, Will Smith, Julianne Moore