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 Blair Witch'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 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 September 23 - 25, 2016.
This weekend, The Magnificent Seven opens in 3,600 theaters and Storks plays in more than 3,800 locations.
#1 - The Magnificent Seven
Coming in first should be the Western remake The Magnificent Seven, which entered the fall as one of the most anticipated films of the season. It is the latest collaboration between star Denzel Washington and director Antoine Fuqua, who have found success before with movies such as Training Day ($76.6 million) and The Equalizer ($101.5 million). Washington has remained a viable box office draw throughout his career, attracting large crowds with projects like Flight ($93.7 million) and Safe House ($126.3 million) over the last handful of years. Another key member of the ensemble is Chris Pratt, the friendly face of hits Guardians of the Galaxy ($333.1 million) and Jurassic World ($652.2 million). It's safe to say this film has plenty of star power.
Westerns have struggled to gross decent amounts lately, but this should be the exception to the rule. General audiences have responded well to the marketing campaign, which is selling the latest version of The Magnificent Seven as a fun genre picture. The early reviews have been somewhat mixed, but lean more towards the positive side of the spectrum. Even if it isn't destined to become a classic like the previous editions, a solid piece of entertainment is what the moviegoing public needs after a disappointing summer. Look for Magnificent Seven to open big, and it could set a new September opening weekend record. Projections are currently set for $51 million.
#2 - Storks
Our choice for second is Storks, the new animated film from Warner Animation Group. That studio was the company responsible for the mega hit The LEGO Movie ($257.7 million), and they are looking to build on that reputation to hopefully rival the likes of Pixar, DreamWorks, and Illumination. It's arriving at a good time on the movie release calendar. The family demographic hasn't had a breakout smash since The Secret Life of Pets over the summer, and September has been a strong month for this kind of fare. Both Hotel Transylvania films had great commercial performances, so WB is probably expecting something similar for Storks.
Overall, they should be in good shape. Storks has a neat premise (riffing on the old "stork delivers the baby" euphemism), and the initial reviews have been generally positive (though, not overly enthusiastic). The general consensus seems to be that the film is a well-made ride for the whole family, which should help its prospects. Magnificent Seven is the new release with the widest appeal, so Storks may not be able to top the Western, but it should do fine in its own right. Estimates have it pegged for an opening weekend of $36.5 million.
#3 - Sully
The reigning champ, Clint Eastwood's Sully (read our review), should fall to third in its third weekend. The biopic got the fall off to a great start, earning an impressive $74.9 million so far in its domestic run. It's been able to parlay its strong word-of-mouth and early Oscar buzz into strong financial results. Though business will begin to slow down somewhat with the arrival of high profile new releases, there's no reason why Sully can't have another fruitful three days at the box office.
#4 - Bridget Jones's Baby
Our pick for fourth is Bridget Jones's Baby (read our review), which opened in third place last weekend. The romantic-comedy's commercial appeal may be somewhat limited due to the extended time between sequels, but the positive reviews should keep it hanging around for at least another week. Women still love Bridget Jones, and this movie is tapping into a demographic that's going underserved right now.
#5 - Blair Witch
Rounding out the top five should be Blair Witch (read our review). The horror sequel grossed $9.5 million in its opening weekend, coming in second place. Despite the recognizable name, interest in the project was low (perhaps due to the mixed word-of-mouth). Films in this genre tend to be front loaded, meaning that the chances it has strong legs are low.
Last Week's Recap
- Blair Witch
- Bridget Jones's Baby
- When the Bough Breaks
- Blair Witch
- Bridget Jones's Baby
- Don't Breathe
Next Week: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, Deepwater Horizon, and more!