Weekend Predictions: New Releases Will Kill or Be Killed

Sin City: A Dame to Kill For poster

Last weekend, there were three wide releases, but only one of them did relatively well. This weekend, there are also three wide releases and hopefully they will perform better at the box office. There are some positive signs and some analysts think both Sin City: A Dame To Kill For and If I Stay will open with more than $20 million while When the Game Stands Tall could make more than $10 million. That's on the high side. On the low side, none of the new releases will open in first place and Guardians of the Galaxy and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will be in a battle for first and second place. That said, this weekend last year, none of the three wide releases earned more than $10 million during the weekend and only two films in total reached that mark over the weekend. Even low-end expectations for this year are more bullish than that, so 2014 should continue its winning streak in the year-over-year comparison.

Sin City: A Dame To Kill For is the sequel to Sin City, which came out nearly a decade ago. That's far too long for a sequel, especially one that was only a midlevel hit. Worse still, its reviews are substantially weaker than its predecessor's reviews were. It does have nearly a decade of ticket price inflation that will help boost its box office this weekend and on the high end, it could earn $25 million. On the low end, it will struggle to get $15 million. I think the high end is a little more likely and I'm going with $21 million.

If I Stay is an adaptation of a Young Adult novel, but unlike last week's The Giver, this film is a drama, not a dystopian thriller. Because of this, the film is less likely to suffer from market overload. Like last week's film, this one's reviews are weak, which won't help at the box office. On the high end, it could open with more than $20 million and battle with Sin City: A Dame To Kill For for first place, a battle some analysts think it will win. That's a little bit too bullish for my tastes. However, second place with $16 million isn't a bad goal to aim for.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Guardians of the Galaxy have been battling each other for first place on the daily chart. Guardians of the Galaxy will likely win this close race with $15 million over the weekend, while Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles should place fourth with $14 million.

Let's Be Cops should round out the top five with just under $10 million. This would put its running tally at $44 million after 12 days of release, which is enough to cover its entire production budget and a chunk of its P&A budget as well.

When the Game Stands Tall is the final new release of the week and there's very few positives to talk about. There are still no reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, which is a really bad sign. Also, the audience anticipation level on that site is just 89% positive, which is also really bad. Generally speaking, if you are not interested in a movie, you are not likely to bother voting one way or another. When 11% vote no, it is a sign that the buzz is not only weak, it is also negative. On the positive side, there's not a lot of direct competition out there and it wouldn't take too much to earn fifth place. I think it won't quite get there, but it will be close with just over $9 million.


- C.S.Strowbridge


Date posted: 2014-08-21