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 No Escape'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 4 - 6, 2015.
This weekend, A Walk in the Woods opens in 1,960 theaters on September 2, and The Transporter Refueled debuts in 2,800 locations. In limited release, Before We Go and Un Gallo con Muchos Huevos play on an unspecified number of screens.
#1 - Straight Outta Compton
Our pick for first again is Straight Outta Compton (read our review). Taking full advantage of the box office doldrums of August, the N.W.A. biopic has won the past three weekends, bringing in $13.1 million last week and is now up to $134 million domestically. Even though the film's been out for a while now, it's still enjoying the positive buzz of both critics and audiences, and the new releases this weekend aren't exactly of the highest profile. Though business is slowing down after the record breaking opening, Straight Outta Compton still has the easiest path to the top spot.
#2 - The Transporter Refueled
Coming in second should be The Transporter Refueled. The film is a reboot of the action franchise that used to star Jason Statham. But even then, it was hardly a blockbuster property. The highest the original films got was $43 million with 2005's The Transporter 2, and the most recent installment (released in 2008) made only $31.7 million for its entire run. And as the opening weekend numbers for the trilogy would indicate ($9 million, $16 million, and $12 million respectively), there wasn't much audience demand when Transporter films were coming out on a regular basis.
As such, it's hard to see how Refueled can buck that trend, especially as it is arriving in theaters with little buzz to speak of. Lacking any real bankable names (relying on the Taken brand to bring in viewers) and trying to revive a franchise with little life, early projections have it making just $8 million in its first three days. This time of year, that might be enough to grab one of the top spots, but it's hardly a successful figure.
#3 - War Room
Our choice for third is War Room, which surprised many last week by debuting second with $11 million. The religious drama isn't a crossover hit, but it's performing well and finding its target audience. With so little to choose from, it's easy to see how it may be able to replicate these numbers and have another healthy week at the box office.
#4 - Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation
Coming in fourth should be Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (read our review). The action sequel keeps chugging along, adding another $8.1 million to its domestic total last week. Moviegoers looking for quality blockbuster entertainment have slim pickings, and if Transporter is failing to generate attention, it means Ethan Hunt and friends remain a viable option. Rogue Nation should be able to hang around the top five for another week.
#5 - No Escape
Rounding out the top five should be No Escape (read our review). Debuting with $8.1 million, the thriller didn't seize the zeitgeist, and the poor word-of-mouth isn't doing it any favors. But as the box office is stuck in a down period, No Escape may have some appeal to help it draw in a decent crowd again.
Last Week's Recap
The bombing of We Are Your Friends threw us for a loop, but our picks were fairly decent. We had the first and third spots correct, and if we had only switched No Escape and Sinister 2, we would have had 4/5 films picked correctly. Not too bad.
Next Week: The Visit, Straight Outta Compton and more!