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Weekend Predictions: Is Zootopia Headed for a Threepeat?

March 18th, 2016


There are three wide releases coming out this week. This includes The Divergent Series: Allegiant, which, at the beginning of the month, was widely expected to earn first place during its debut. However, Zootopia's success at the box office combined with Allegiant's failure with critics will likely result in Zootopia in earning first place, again. Miracles from Heaven is the latest faith-based film to hit theaters. It might struggle simply because there is too much recent competition for this still niche-market. Finally there's The Bronze, which is opening in just over 1,000 theaters. If it can avoid the Mendoza Line, or at least come close, then it will reach the top ten. That should be doable, maybe. This weekend last year, Insurgent earned first place with just over $52 million, while Cinderella earned second place with close to $35 million. I think Zootopia will come close to Cinderella, but Allegiant will fall far short of Insurgent and that will result in 2016 losing in the year-over-year comparison.

Zootopia has already pulled in more than $160 million during its run and there's a slim, slim chance it will get to $200 million over the weekend. Thanks to its reviews, its target audience, and the fact that in many places, Spring Break ends this weekend, it should hold on really well earning $34 million over the weekend. That won't be enough to get to $200 million, but it will be very close to that milestone.

I think Lionsgate is going to regret splitting the final novel in the The Divergent Series into two movies. These films were never loved by critics, but Allegiant is currently just a few negative reviews away from a single-digit Tomatometer Score. That's embarrassing. Furthermore, it looks like it is going to miss first place with just $32 million. This is not quite a disaster, but close. The film reportedly cost $110 million, just like Insurgent did, and that previous film barely broke even. This movie could lose enough money to eat up whatever profits the first two movies made, while the final film is still coming out next year.

10 Cloverfield Lane will likely see its box office cut in half this weekend to $12 million. That will push its running tally to $44 million. It if can reach $60 million domestically, then it will break even just on its domestic numbers.

Miracles from Heaven got started on Wednesday with a second place, $1.89 million opening. The film also earned a CinemaScore of A+, so it is clearly pleasing its target audience a lot more than it did with critics. The sheer number of other faith-based films that are already in theaters or are already being hyped will hurt its box office chances, but it should still open in fourth place with $10 million / $13 million during its three-day / five-day debut.

Deadpool should round out the top five with $8 million over the weekend for a running tally of $340 million. By this time next week, it could be ahead of American Sniper on the all-time chart.

The final "wide" release of the week is The Bronze, which is opening in 1,131 theaters. That's a really awkward theater count, because you need a nationwide ad campaign to support a release that large, but there's almost no way a film can earn enough in so few theaters to cover such a campaign. Worse still, its reviews are just 24% positive. It will need to earn just over $1.5 million to break into the top ten, which I think is doable, but barely. There is also a chance it opens with less than $1 million and it is never heard of again.

- Allegiant comparisons
- Miracles from Heaven comparisons
- The Bronze comparisons

Filed under: Weekend Preview, Deadpool, The Divergent Series: Allegiant, Zootopia, The Bronze, 10 Cloverfield Lane, Miracles from Heaven, The Divergent Series