Tomb Raider is expected to have an uphill climb at the box office this weekend, and its opening is projected to be slightly below 2003's The Cradle of Life. A reboot of the franchise, the latest film stars Oscar winner Alicia Vikander as Lara Croft (taking over the role from Angelina Jolie) and hopes to launch a new series for Warner Bros. It's no secret video game adaptations frequently struggle to leave an impact, but there was hope Tomb Raider could reverse those fortunes and be a bona fide hit.
Unfortunately, it doesn't appear that will be the case. While critics have enjoyed certain individual aspects of the movie (Vikander's performance in particular), response to the full picture has been mixed, with many marking it down for incorporating tired origin story elements. Even though it is the new tentpole of the week, debuting in the shadow of a worldwide phenomenon might be too much to overcome for the adventure flick.
According to Box Office Pro, Tomb Raider is estimated to bring in $21.5 million over its first three days. That figure isn't even in the same ballpark as the Jolie's 2001 original ($47.7 million opening weekend) and is even shockingly below Jolie's sequel, The Cradle of Life ($21.7 million opening). Domestically, there doesn't appear to be much interest in a new Lara Croft, which puts WB in a tight spot when it comes to developing a franchise. It's moderately budgeted at $94 million, but the studio may have to rely heavily on the international markets to turn a sizable profit.
Making matters worse for Tomb Raider is that Black Panther is still holding strong. Its monopoly on the #1 position is likely to continue, with estimates suggesting a $29 million haul in its fifth weekend. That would push its U.S. total past the $600 million mark as it eyes The Avengers' record for highest-grossing MCU film. People (including us) thought T'Challa's impressive reign to end as March's genre movies started rolling out, but that hasn't happened yet. Up next on the docket is Pacific Rim Uprising, but early estimates for that sequel aren't so great either. Depending on how things shape up, Black Panther could remain in the pole position until Steven Spielberg's Ready Player One hits theaters at the end of the month.
This week's other wide release, Love, Simon, is projected to come in fourth with $14.3 million. The coming-of-age love story seems poised to emerge as a counter-programming hit thanks to the enthusiastic word-of-mouth (read our review) praising it as a milestone for inclusion. Elsewhere in the top five, A Wrinkle in Time and Game Night will try to do the best they can amidst the newcomers and other holdovers.
Source: Box Office Pro
- Tomb Raider (2018) release date: Mar 16, 2018