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Will Nightmare Scare the Competition?

April 29th, 2010

It's the final weekend of April, which is normally a very bad time to release a big hit. But it appears that one of this year's two wide releases may make it. A Nightmare on Elm Street should be able to open faster than the two films did last week, but comparing it to last year is a bit more confusing. Last year, the last weekend in April of saw the release of Obsessed, which earned close to $30 million. A Nightmare on Elm Street should match that figure. However, the same weekend last year was actually the first weekend of May, which saw the release of Wolverine. There's a chance that overall box office combined won't match that film's opening.

A Nightmare on Elm Street is the latest in a long line of horror remakes. Similar films have had mixed results. Many open well, but few wow critics or show any legs. This film will likely continue this trend. It is certainly not impressing critics and it currently only has 12% positive reviews. However, the buzz suggests that the film could open with as much as $40 million at the box office. Even the low end of expectations has it pulling in $30 million. Something in my gut says this film's opening weekend could be closer to $20 million than $30 million, but consensus suggests that $35 million is very likely. This is more than the original earned in total, but there's little hope that this rendition will be remembered fondly 25 years from now.

How to Train Your Dragon will be squeezed into second place, but it should add $11 million over the weekend for a total of $192 million after more than a month of release. Meanwhile, it is on pace to reach $200 million next weekend.

I don't think that a lot of people were expecting Furry Vengeance to be an award-worthy movie; however, so far it has earned zero positive reviews out of 21 on Rotten Tomatoes. Despite opening in nearly 3000 theaters, the buzz is almost non-existent and there are few analysts that expect the film to thrive at the box office. Worst case scenario has it missing the Mendoza Line, resulting in a sub-$6 million opening which might not be enough to reach the top five. Even the best case scenario has the film struggling to reach $10 million. Split the difference and we get a third place opening with $8 million.

Date Night and The Back-up Plan should battle for fourth place. The latter had the advantage at the box office last weekend, but the former has the advantage in terms of reviews. Both films should earn between $6 and $7 million, with Date Night holding the slightest advantage overall.


Filed under: Date Night, A Nightmare on Elm Street, The Back-up Plan, How to Train Your Dragon, Furry Vengeance