Weekend Predictions: Will Riddick Light Up the Charts?
The weekend after the Labor Day long weekend is historically the worst weekend of the year. Because of that, it should come as no surprise that there is only one wide release this weekend. After all, studios don't want to release a film if the weekend is practically cursed. However, that one film is Riddick, which is actually earning good buzz. It might crack $30 million over the weekend. Might. It would be a surprise, but you can't completely dismiss the possibility. The only other semi-new film to talk about is Instructions Not Included, which is doubling its theater count. However, it's a niche market film and these tend to have short legs, as the target audience rushes out to see them immediately. Fortunately, it doesn't really matter, because last year was a disaster. As long as Riddick tops $10 million, 2013 will come out ahead.
Riddick is this year's Resident Evil film. It's an action film that is the latest installment of a franchise that has never been more than a midlevel hit. The reviews for Riddick are good, for the genre, and should help the box office numbers. Best case scenario has the film reaching $30 million. Worst case scenario is roughly half that. I think the higher end is a little more likely than the lower end and I'm going with $24 million. I am a little more bullish than most analysts, so keep that in mind.
Lee Daniels' The Butler will be in second place with about $10 million. Its running tally is closing in on $100 million and it should get to that milestone before it drops out of the top five.
We're the Millers reached $100 million last weekend, while it should add about $8 million this weekend. It has already earned enough to cover its production budget and likely all of its P&A budget as well.
Instructions Not Included is doubling its theater count, which should help its sophomore stint. However, it is also a niche market film, which tends to hurt the legs of these films. The target audience doesn't have a lot of mainstream films targeted at them, so when one is released, they rush out to see it. The reviews are good, for the genre, as it is a unchallenging sappy family film. But, they are not good enough to suggest great legs. Worst case scenario has the film's per theater average plummet to $5,000 or so. That won't be enough to reach the top five. Best case scenario has it remaining about $10,000, in which case it might earn third place. I think fourth place with just over $6 million is more likely, but if the film can reach an audience besides Hispanics, then the higher end becomes a lot more likely.
One Direction: This is Us fell 57% from Friday to Saturday. If it doesn't fall at least that much during its sophomore stint, I will be amazed. Granted, its reviews are not bad, but the Fangirl effect here is simply too much to deal with. On the high end, it will finish in fourth place with $7 million. On the low end, it will fall 70% to just under $5 million. If this happens, then Disney's Planes will have a shot at earning fifth place. I'm going with just over $5 million, but that's still a steep decline.
Date posted: 2013-09-06