Welcome to the Screen Rant Box Office Prediction. Every week we put together an informal list of box office picks for the upcoming weekend - in collaboration with the Screen Rant Underground podcast Box Office Battle - 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 Captain America: The Winter Soldier'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 April 11 - 13, 2014.
This weekend, animated sequel Rio 2 opens in 3,900 theaters, sports dramedy Draft Day debuts in 2,700 theaters, and horror movie Oculus is released in 2,500 theaters. Joe and Only Lovers Left Alive get unspecified limited releases while The Railway Man debuts in 4 theaters.
#1 - Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Look for last week’s champ, Captain America: The Winter Soldier (read our review), to finish in the top spot again this week. Setting a new April record with over $95 million during its opening weekend, the latest installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is poised to be the main draw from now until the beginning of May. With the huge domestic total and overwhelming positive buzz, it’s clear this will have strong legs for the next several weeks.
#2 - Rio 2
One of this week’s new releases, Rio 2, is our choice for second place. The first film in this budding franchise released during a similar timeframe in 2011 and debuted with a $39.2 million opening weekend. While the $143.6 million domestic total indicates this brand isn’t as strong as those offerings from Pixar and DreamWorks, it will serve as a viable option for families. With Muppets Most Wanted underperforming, that demographic is ripe for the taking and this animated sequel could do the trick.
#3 - Oculus
Coming in third should be the new horror film Oculus. It’s not expected to be a major crossover hit, but there’s some potential for a counter-programming option to make small waves this weekend. In recent years, genre entries such as Cabin in the Woods ($14.7 million) and Evil Dead ($25.7 million) have opened strongly in April, suggesting that horror fans are always in the mood for some new scares.
#4 - Draft Day
Our choice for fourth place is Draft Day. As NFL enthusiasts gear up for the 2014 draft, this film looks to capitalize on the popularity of the league, but there’s little to indicate it will be a big hit. Kevin Costner hasn’t been a solid box office draw in years (this February’s 3 Days to Kill only solidified that notion) and with Draft Day’s low tracking numbers, it seems like that trend will continue. Football die-hards and audiences looking for a straightforward drama (as opposed to the spectacle of Marvel) could check it out, but it’s doubtful it makes much of an impact.
#5 - Noah
Rounding out the top five should be Noah (read our review). Darren Aronofsky’s Biblical epic has grossed $72.3 million to date, but now the competition gets tougher. Not only will The Winter Soldier continue to drain business from this film, it also has three new nationwide releases to contend with, which could lower demand.
#10 - Sabotage
That's it for this week's breakdown.
Now, if you want to participate in the weekly Box Office Battle, it's time for you to make your picks! In the comments section below, post what you think will be the top five movies this weekend at the box office as well as your own number ten tiebreaker. Then, tune into the Screen Rant Underground podcast for the results and find out who won.
Opening in theaters this week (Wide):
- Rio 2 - 3,900 theaters
- Draft Day - 2,700 theaters
- Oculus - 2,500 theaters
Opening in theaters this week (Limited):
- Joe - unspecified
- Only Lovers Left Alive - unspecified
- The Railway Man - 4 theaters
Box Office Battle Scoring Rules: You get three (3) points for each direct match with the weekend actuals and one (1) point for each movie placed within one spot of the exact position. A perfect score is 15 points. Tie-breakers are not worth any points but, in the event of a tie, the person with a tie-breaker selection closest to the number 10 spot will be awarded the win.
Last Week’s Official Box Office Battle Reader Winner (Captain America: The Winter Soldier's opening): Sal reports that there is a two-way tie between Chris B. and PeterGecko. Both had a score of 12 and coincidentally finished two spots away from the tiebreaker.
For the record, here are our picks from last week - along with the corresponding amount of points we received for each pick (listed in parenthesis).
- #1 - Captain America: The Winter Soldier (3)
- #2 - Noah (3)
- #3 - Divergent (3)
- #4 - Muppets Most Wanted (1)
- #5 - The Grand Budapest Hotel (1)
- #10 - Need for Speed
- Final Score: 11 points
Make sure to check back later this week for the official box office results and tune into the Screen Rant Underground podcast for the weekly winners!
Follow Chris on Twitter @ChrisAgar90
Source: Box Office Mojo (Release Schedule)