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Weekend Predictions: Can Aliens Invade First Place?

May 18th, 2017

Alien: Covenant

Alien: Covenant is looking to unseat Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 for top spot on the box office chart this weekend. Meanwhile, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul and Everything, Everything are just trying to survive in counter-programming roles. The prognosis for those two is mixed. Meanwhile, this weekend last year, there were five films that earned more than $10 million over the weekend. This year, there might be only two. Hopefully the new releases aren’t that bad, while the holdovers don’t completely collapse. If this happens, 2017 could win in the year-over-year comparison for the second weekend in a row. If not, then 2017's winning streak will end at one.

Alien: Covenant is the follow-up to Prometheus. That film earned good , but disappointing reviews, as it didn’t live up to the first two movies in the franchise and only managed a B from CinemaScore. Call it the curse of high expectations. Covenant’s reviews are slightly better at 77% positive. However, the relatively poor reception Prometheus earned will likely hurt Covenant at the box office causing it to fall significantly from the $51.05 million the previous film earned. It might fall to barely more than $30 million, which could cause an end to the franchise, at least for a while. I’m not that pessimistic, but falling to just under $40 million seems likely. I’m going with $38 million for our prediction.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 will most likely slip to second place during its third weekend of release. It will have the best reviews in the top five, but it is also dealing with direct competition. The film fell 55% last weekend to $65.26 million. If it does the same this weekend, then it would fall to just under $30 million. I think it will fair a little better earning $31 million over the weekend, pushing its running tally to just over $300 million after three weeks of release. It would become the eighth film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to reach that milestone.

Everything, Everything is the latest Young Adults adaptation, specifically it is in the so-called “Dying Girl” sub-genre. It stars Amandla Stenberg as a girl who is allergic to everything and can’t leave the house as a result. Amandla Stenberg hasn’t been asked to lead a movie before, so we can’t judge her star power just yet. Worse still, there are no reviews on Rotten Tomatoes as I write this. Granted, it is very early on Thursday morning, but you would still hope to see some reviews by now. This film isn’t going to open as well as the gold standard of this subgenre, The Fault in Our Stars. It’s unlikely it will open as well as If I Stay. It is possible it will open below $10 million. I’m not that pessimistic, but I’m only expecting between $11 million and $12 million. Fortunately, it reportedly only cost $10 million to make, so this would be enough to be considered a moderate financial success.

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul is a reboot to the Diary of a Wimpy Kid franchise and the question everyone is asking is, “Why?” Why was this made? Kids who enjoyed the first three movies have grown too old for the franchise, while it hasn’t been long enough for nostalgia to build up. It feels like a crash money grab and that really shows in the reviews. Granted, the target audience doesn’t tend to read reviews, but the parents who have to accompany them to the movies do. It is almost guaranteed to be the weakest installment in the franchise and opening below $10 million wouldn’t be a shock. I think it will just avoid that fate.

It looks like Snatched will grab fifth place during its second weekend of release. There’s no direct competition, so that will help its legs. Also, its target demographic doesn’t tend to rush out to see movies during their opening weekend, so that should again help its legs. On the other hand, its reviews are weak, to be polite, and it got a boost from Mother’s Day last weekend. Look for just under $9 million over the weekend for a ten-day total of nearly $35 million.

- Alien: Covenant Comparisons
- Everything, Everything Comparisons
- Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul Comparisons

Filed under: Weekend Preview, Alien: Covenant, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2, Snatched, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul, Everything, Everything, Alien, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Marvel Cinematic Universe, Amandla Stenberg