I’ll start off with “Baggage Claim,” one of the four major theatrical releases of the weekend. It’s coming to the lowest amount of theatres of the bunch (1800), but it could make a decent amount of money this weekend. These sort-of generic romantic comedies are usually popular with the African American crowd, but the only familiar cast member in the trailer is Djimon Hounsou (“Blood Diamond”). And Tyler Perry isn’t involved with the project, which can be a good or a bad thing with these types of movies. Since they’re usually modest hits, and films similar to this open at $10.2 million, I’ll go around there – even though I’ve only seen one trailer for this. This could hit $10 million, but I think it will miss it – so my prediction is $9.3 million.
Another film coming out this weekend is Ron Howard’s “Rush,” which has garnered a lot of buzz, and it was released to five theatres last weekend (earning $187 thousand) in order to create stronger word-of-mouth. While NASCAR is very popular in the U.S. (I don’t get what’s so interesting about drivers making left turns), Formula One racing hasn’t really broken out. It sounds like an interesting biography, so I’ll give this one a shot. So will others interested in any sort-of racing, and maybe those who like Chris Hemsworth. Similar movies open at $10.28 million. My prediction is $11.5 million.
It seems that Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s directorial debut “Don Jon” will be a modest hit. I’m pretty excited for it. People love their JGL, but I have a feeling this will have a hard R-rating, so teens won’t be able to sneak into this so well. The subject matter (the main character’s a porn addict) might not let it appeal to the masses; but the trailers have been good. I think it looks like a very funny movie. It might make a decent date movie for couples, as well. It’s coming to 2200 theatres this weekend, and similar movies open to $12.2 million, so my prediction for this is $10.8 million.
The big dog to beat (and no one has a chance of beating it) is “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2,” a sequel coming four years after the original. The original actually isn’t as bad as I thought it would be, and I can see how kids would love this stuff. With its aggressive marketing campaign, this has positioned itself to become the biggest September opening ever; and the number it would have to beat is $42.52 million, the record held by last year’s “Hotel Transylvania.” And it would have to beat $40.2 million, held by “Insidious Chapter 2” for nearly two weeks now, to become the second biggest opener of September. Movies similar to this open at about $42.6 million. The original is a pretty good movie that was liked by both audiences (7.0 rating on IMDb score) and critics (it’s 87% fresh), earning $30.3 million in its opening weekend, $124.87 in its domestic run, and $243 million worldwide. Right now, I can see this opening right on par with “The Croods” – so my prediction is $44.7 million.
Here’s how I see the Top 10:
1. “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2”: $44.7m
2. “Prisoners”: $14.6m (Review coming soon)
3. “Rush”: $11.5m
4. “Don Jon”: $10.8m
5. “Baggage Claim”: $9.3m
6. “Insidious Chapter 2”: $8.63m
7. “Instructions Not Included”: $4.75m
8. “The Family”: $4.2m
9. “We’re the Millers“: $4.1m
10. “Lee Daniels’ The Butler”: $3.35m