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 Robocop'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 February 21 - 23, 2014.
This weekend, disaster action movie Pompeii opens in 2,500 theaters and action film 3 Days to Kill debuts in 2,500 theaters. In Secret gets a limited release of 250 theaters while In Wind Rises sees a release in 21 locations.
#1 - The LEGO Movie
We’re picking The LEGO Movie (read our review) to finish in the top spot for the third week in a row. The animated hit from directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller grossed over $50 million last weekend and is showing no signs of slowing down. As the only major family film on the market, it will continue to bring in that demographic for the foreseeable future.
#2 - About Last Night
Romantic comedy About Last Night (read our review) should also repeat as the second highest-grossing film of the weekend. The remake made $25.6 million during its first three days, taking advantage of the Valentine’s Day holiday. While it could fall a bit in its second week, any potential decline should not be that drastic. Neither of this week’s new releases are big enough to compete with the star power of Kevin Hart.
#3 - Robocop
Continuing with this week’s trend, we believe that Robocop (read our review) will repeat as third this week. The ’80s remake received a stronger critical reception than expected, and that could help sway moviegoers this week (the new releases are arriving with very little fanfare). Robocop’s $21.7 million gross over its first three days indicates that the demand was never that high, but since Pompeii and 3 Days to Kill are both tracking very low at this point, this sci-fi film could edge them out.
#4 - Pompeii
Our choice for fourth is the action/disaster film Pompeii. Director Paul W.S. Anderson (not to be confused with multiple Oscar-nominee Paul Thomas Anderson) is perhaps best known for directing the Resident Evil film franchise. While those movies have their niche audience, the filmmaker has been unable to find mainstream success throughout his career. 2011’s The Three Musketeers bombed with a $20.3 million gross and even 2012’s Resident Evil: Retribution failed to make much of an impact, bowing out with $42.3 million.
This pattern doesn’t seem like it will change with Pompeii. While the movie could find an audience with die-hard action fans, it’s unlikely to have widespread appeal since the previews have not generated much excitement.
#5 - The Monuments Men
Rounding out the top five should be The Monuments Men (read our review). Despite a lukewarm critical reception, George Clooney’s historical drama has posted solid numbers so far (including $15.5 million last weekend), thanks to the sheer amount of star power it has. That alone could be enough to help it maintain its place for at least one more week
#10 - Frozen
We do not believe 3 Days to Kill will finish in the top five. Despite a healthy marketing campaign and the presence of Kevin Costner, there doesn’t appear to be enough interest in this action movie to say that it will be a hit. Costner has not been a box office draw in a while (obviously, Man of Steel made over $291 for other reasons) and early tracking numbers do not suggest a big weekend.
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):
- Pompeii - 2,500 theaters
- 3 Days to Kill - 2,500 theaters
Opening in theaters this week (Limited):
- In Secret - 250 theaters
- The Wind Rises - 21 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 (Robocop's opening): Sal reports that 68FC is the winner with a score of 12 points.
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 - The LEGO Movie (3)
- #2 - About Last Night (3)
- #3 - Robocop (3)
- #4 - The Monuments Men (3)
- #5 - Winter's Tale (0)
- #10 - Vampire Academy
- Final Score: 12 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)