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Jonas Brothers take on Miley Cyrus

February 26th, 2009

There won't be much of a race for the top of the box office chart with The Jonas Brothers being the only film with a legitimate shot at number one. There is a question whether the trio can live up to Miley Cyrus's box office triumph with Best of Both Worlds. And then there's the question of 2009 maintaining its blistering pace over 2008. I think the latter is more likely than the former.

Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience is hoping to live up to its predecessor, Best of Both Worlds. In fact, with the number of 3D screens nearly doubling since last year, the studio could be hoping for significant growth this time around. However, I think this might be asking too much. For instance, I don't think the Jonas Brothers are as popular as Miley Cyrus, at least that's the feeling I get from outside of both their fandoms. When the trio toured, they did sell out venues, but they were smaller venues than the ones Miley Cyrus sold out, and in many cases, her venues sold out in less time. Also, I don't think anyone is falling for the "One week engagement!" this time around. Fans and parents know that the only way this movie is in theaters for only one week is if it bombs, which is highly unlikely. On the other hand, Jonas Brothers has early reviews that are much weaker compared to the reviews Best of Both Worlds earned. It doesn't have the energy, the Jonas Brothers don't have the screen presence of Miley Cyrus, and the "documentary" portion of the movie is just plain dull. That said, $30 million is practically the worst case scenario for the opening weekend, and that could more than double its nearest competition. Best case scenario has the film pulling in $40 million, or more. I'm going with $35 million, which seems to be a consensus of sorts, but my gut is telling me it might not reach $30 million.

After a record opening for a Tyler Perry film, Madea Goes to Jail has shown weak legs this week, losing 40% of its daily haul from Monday to Wednesday, which is a terrible result. In fact, taking into account the holiday Monday, these declines are on par with Friday the 13th's first week collapse. Now I don't think it will collapse by 80% over this weekend, but 60% is possible. And if it does decline by that amount, the film will have a very hard time reaching $100 million at the box office. It was once unheard of for a film to open with $40 million or more and then fail to reach $100 million; however, it is becoming commonplace now. Look for $16 million over the weekend, and $64 million after two.

Slumdog Millionaire reached $100 million on Tuesday, 105 days into its run, and this weekend it looks to take advantage of its Oscar wins and it could have its best weekend at the box office. In order to do that, it would have to earn close to $11 million from Friday to Sunday. That seems a little out of reach. That said, $10 million and third place is not, which would give the film its best placing on the charts during its three-month run.

In order to remain on pace to reach $100 million, Coraline would have to earn roughly $8.8 million over the weekend. I wouldn't bet on it. On the other hand, just over $7 million seems rather likely, which would give the movie $63 million after four weeks of release, and that would leave it on pace to reach $80 million to $90 million.

Rounding out the top five should be Taken with just under $7 million, which will be more than enough to become the second film of the year to reach $100 million.

The final wide release of the week is Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li starring Kristin Kreuk of Smallville fame. This is a sequel 15 years in the making... That's not a good sign. The ideal time period between sequels is two to three years. Any less and there is a strong chance demand hasn't built up from the first one. Any more and there is a strong chance moviegoers have moved on. Additionally, the first movie wasn't a big hit to begin with, either with moviegoers and especially with critics, so there's little reason to suspect there is a strong demand for this movie. Add in an opening theater count of just 1,136 and zero reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, and the prospects get dimmer. I've seem some predictions as high a fifth place with just over $7 million; however, I don't think that's realistic. In fact, $5 million might not be realistic, and if the film failed to reach the Mendoza Line, I would not be terribly shocked. Look for $4 million over the weekend, and maybe $10 million in total.


Filed under: Taken, Slumdog Millionaire, Madea Goes To Jail, Coraline, Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience, Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li