Welcome to the Screen Rant Box Office Prediction. Every week we put together an informal list of box office picks for the upcoming weekend – to offer readers a rough estimate of how new releases (and returning holdovers) will perform in theaters.

For a recap of last week’s box office totals, read our box office wrap-up from The Penguins of Madagascar‘s opening weekend – and scroll to the bottom of this post to see how our previous picks measured up.

Full disclosure: Box office predictions are not an exact science. We acknowledge that our picks may not always be correct. For the sake of offering a jumping off point for discussion, here are our picks for the weekend of December 5 – 7, 2014.

This weekend, The Pyramid plays in 550 theaters. In limited release, Wild opens in 5 locations on Wednesday.

#1 – The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1

Look for last week’s champ, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 (read our review) to finish in first place for the third week in a row. As expected, the young-adult adaptation suffered a big second weekend drop off (53.3 percent) and made $56.9 million over the holiday frame. The film is well below where Catching Fire was at this point in their respective releases, and with high-profile newcomers on the horizon, the numbers will continue to fall. However, that won’t be for at least another week. With no new wide releases arriving on Friday, Mockingjay – Part 1 has a clear road to the top spot once again.

Hunger Games Mockingjay Part 1 Liam Hemsworth Jennifer Lawrence Box Office Prediction: Penguins of Madagascar vs. Mockingjay   Part 1


#2 – Penguins of Madagascar

Our choice for second is Penguins of Madagascar (read our review). DreamWorks’ animated spinoff did solid business during the Thanksgiving weekend, making $35.4 million in its first three days. That’s a ways off from what the Madagascar franchise typically debuts at, so we don’t expect this to have strong legs as it continues its run. That said, the family film should still do well for itself again this weekend, since there won’t be any new competition.

#3 – Big Hero 6

Coming in third should be Big Hero 6 (read our review). We had thought that the presence of Penguins last week would take away a chunk of its business, but that was not the case. The Disney/Marvel hybrid upped its domestic total to $167.2 million by making an additional $18.8 last weekend. Apparently, positive reviews go a long way and that response has carried it thus far. There’s no reason to believe that can’t continue. Even though it won’t be the next FrozenBig Hero 6 will continue to be commercially viable for at least a couple more weeks.

#4 – Interstellar

Our pick for fourth is Interstellar (read our review). Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi drama hasn’t posted the kind of numbers moviegoers are accustomed to seeing from him, but it’s still been a successful endeavor (especially when considering the overseas numbers). The film is falling off a bit (it made $15.7 million last weekend), but it’s still hanging around in the top five and since there are no new release coming out to steal its thunder, it will most likely remain in this spot for one more week.

Nov 9 Box Office Interstellar Box Office Prediction: Penguins of Madagascar vs. Mockingjay   Part 1


#5 – Horrible Bosses 2

Rounding out the top five should be Horrible Bosses 2 (read our review). The comedy sequel did not have a strong opening, making only $15.4 million last weekend. Many expected it to fall short of surpassing Mockingjay – Part 1 and Penguins, though few would have thought that the film would fail to outgross the rest of the holdovers that have been playing over the past month. It’s clear that audience interest is not here, and with word-of-mouth the way it is, we doubt that it will pick up new viewers after one week in theaters. The only thing that will keep it in the top five is the lack of competition; otherwise, it would be on its way out already.

Last Week’s Recap

While we did correctly predict the movies that made the top five, we were off when it came to the order. Mockingjay – Part 1 was the easy choice for first, but then things got dicy. Big Hero 6 surpassed our expectations and finished in third place, despite the competition from Penguins. We were also way off on Horrible Bosses 2, which couldn’t parlay the success of the first film into a nice, healthy gross. It may have been the poor reviews and/or just a general lack of interest, but the comedy sequel underperformed and came in fifth (we thought it would be third).

That’s it for this week’s breakdown. Make sure to check back later this week for the official box office results!

Agree or disagree with our predictions? Which five films do you think will top the box office this weekend? Share your own picks in the comments section below!

Next Week: Exodus: Gods and Kings and more!

Follow Chris on Twitter @ChrisAgar90

Source: Box Office Mojo (Release Schedule)