Saturday, August 31, 2013

Fall Box Office Predictions- Part 1

With the summer season practically over (my wrap-up is coming later this week), it's time to look ahead to the fall. I already did a most anticipated list for the second half of the year, and I'm not going to do that again. Instead, I will look ahead to the box office for the fall season. And it has the potential to be big. We'll start with Labor Day weekend, even though that is still technically summer. Here we go.

GETAWAY- August 30

Four-Day Weekend Prediction- $14 million
Total Gross Prediction- $35 million


Getaway is a film that looks entertaining enough for a cable watch, but not something to see in theaters. However, it does star Selena Gomez and Ethan Hawke, who are decent draws, but it also looks like a rehash of Fast Five and Drive blended with The Transporter. Anyways, this film won't do much, but it's the only action offering on Labor Day weekend, so I see it doing decent business.

ONE DIRECTION: THIS IS US- August 30

Four-Day Weekend Prediction- $21 million
Total Gross Prediction- $43 million


This will be an extremely front-loaded film as the main audience is teen girls, who typically rush out to see everything opening weekend. The only potential for an expanded audience on this film is director Morgan Spurlock, who is a respected director of documentaries. Still, his name is unfamiliar to general audiences and I think that the driving force behind this will be the 1D fans.

RIDDICK- September 6

Opening Weekend Prediction- $34 million
Total Gross Prediction- $89 million


Riddick is a film that will succeed on the basis that its main star, Vin Diesel, has a major geek presence and a huge twitter following. The Fast and Furious franchise has expanded in a major way since its origin and I think that gives Riddick some hope. However, it is an R-rated sci-fi film, which never really break out at the box office (Elysium is a recent example). Still, with a strong marketing effort, Riddick should do just fine.

THE FAMILY- September 13

Opening Weekend Predictions- $15 million
Total Gross Predictions- $46 million


The Family is the new film from director Luc Besson, a respected filmmaker that has made both art house hits (The Professional) and blockbusters (Taken, Taken 2). Besson's The Family has two major stars but an unsure premise and an R rating. I think that the marketing needs to set in a strong strategy if they want this film to be a success, because otherwise it will end up being another middle of the road action flick.

INSIDIOUS-CHAPTER 2- September 13

Opening Weekend Prediction- $49 million
Total Gross Prediction- $115 million



Back in 2011, Insidious was a minor hit, making $54 million in the US. However, now its director, James Wan, is a major star and has directed a horror mega-hit in The Conjuring. Chapter 2 is already out pacing that film on Facebook and Twitter and it's the first PG-13 horror film in a long time. Plus, with little options for horror in the usually robust fall season, people will flock to this.

BATTLE OF THE YEAR- September 20

Opening Weekend Prediction- $7 million
Total Gross Prediction- $17 million


A dance movie with no major stars and a feeling of complete redundancy. Count me in! Just kidding. Screen Gems has held a lot of advanced screenings for this film, but I really don't know who the audience is. They better pull off a major marketing push if they want this to be a hit. However, the budget couldn't be that big so even if it flops, the film won't hurt the company.

PRISONERS- September 20

Opening Weekend Prediction- $19 million
Total Gross Prediction- $84 million


Prisoners is a movie that looks very good. It looks like a sure-fire Oscar contender. However, I think that this is a film that looks extremely dark and depressing which may turn some people off. I think that the closest comparable film is Se7en, which grossed $187 million when adjusted for inflation. That had three major stars to its advantage though, which Prisoners doesn't. Another comparable would be Zodiac, which grossed $33 million in 2006.

RUSH- September 27

Opening Weekend Prediction- $24 million
Total Gross Prediction- $114 million


Rush is the first major Oscar contender of the year. Some might say that Prisoners has a chance and that The World's End, Frutivale Station and Blue Jasmine could slip in there, but I firmly believe that Ron Howard's Rush has a good shot at several nominations. Rush has a major rising star and a clear plotline, along with a cool 70's look. I see a big hit coming with this one.

DON JON- September 27

Opening Weekend Prediction- $6.5 million
Total Gross Prediction- $20 million


Pornography is probably not the most accessible of topics to make a film about. Porn addiction is even less accessible. And if you couldn't guess by now, that's what Don Jon is about. That could turn people away from it or it could turn people to it. Don Jon has two major stars in its writer/director Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Scarlett Johannson and a good trailer. But still, the subject might be too taboo for some audiences.

CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2- September 27

Opening Weekend Prediction- $44 million
Total Gross Prediction- $156 million


Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs was a surprise hit back in 2009 with $124 million. Now, four years later, the film has expanded thanks to home video. I see this film being a massive hit thanks mostly to the fact that it is the only animated for an entire month, and it's a name brand film. Plus, it looks zany, funny and cool, so it could appeal to teenagers as well. I know I'm looking forward to it.

BAGGAGE CLAIM- September 27

Opening Weekend Prediction- $8 million
Total Gross Prediction- $25 million


It's a romantic comedy, and there aren't many of those nowadays, but it doesn't look particularly good. It could be a nice middle of the road diversion, but I don't see it expanding beyond the female audience that it is targeting.

GRAVITY- October 4

Opening Weekend Prediction- $31 million
Total Gross Prediction- $120 million


Gravity could really be something special. It's something of a sci-fi/horror hybrid with Sandra Bullock and George Clooney. It's got the best of both worlds: special effects that will draw in teens and substance and big stars for older folks. It's my most anticipated for the rest of the year and I see it getting good word of mouth. I really hope that we're in for something innovative here.

RUNNER RUNNER- October 4

Opening Weekend Prediction- $23 million
Total Gross Prediction- $67 million


For my predictions on Runner, Runner, I looked to 21, a film that came out in 2008 about gambling. Now, the only thing that these two films share in common is gambling, but I wasn't sure how many films that there were about that subject. However, Runner Runner has two major stars in Ben Affleck and Justin Timberlake and could be a nice fall action flick.

METALLICA THROUGH THE NEVER- October 4

Opening Weekend Prediction- $11 million
Total Gross Prediction- $35 million


This looks like a cool concept, but will it deliver outside of Metallica's fanbase. It's doubtful, but the fact that the band is mixing a story with a concert that they shot purposefully for the movie could be something that draws in others that are not loyal fans of the bands music. Either way, there's no chance this movie is a financial failure. The budget can't be that big.

CAPTAIN PHILLIPS- October 11

Opening Weekend Prediction- $29 million
Total Gross Prediction- $110 million



Tom Hanks plus the director of The Bourne Supremacy seems like a sure box office hit. I like the prospects of this movie simply because of how many demographics that it can cover. It will appeal to older audiences looking for some good Oscar fare, along with appealing to teenagers who want a tense action thriller. Plus, if the awards buzz on this one blows up, you could see this skyrocket past the total I currently have it at.

MACHETE KILLS- October 11

Opening Weekend Prediction- $15 million
Total Gross Prediction- $37 million


Machete was a small success in 2011, grossed $26 million in the US. But, it had a small budget and that managed to justify a sequel. This one has a bigger cast and if fans of Robert Rodriguez show up, you could see a small increase on the gross. However, the film is still very violent and that takes away the appeal for adult fans of say, Mel Gibson. But with more gimmicks, I don't see why Machete Kills isn't a slightly bigger hit.

ESCAPE PLAN- October 18

Opening Weekend Prediction- $6 million
Total Gross Prediction- $14 million


Look, this film would have been a massive success, say, twenty five years ago. But now, these two stars, Stallone and Schwarzenegger, are just not box office draws. Plus, this movie was screened at Comic-Con for fans, who proceeded to bash the film after they actually saw it. Both of these actors proved that they can't drive films by themselves with Bullet to the Head and The Last Stand, so why would Escape Plan be any different.

THE FIFTH ESTATE- October 18

Opening Weekend Prediction- $13 million
Total Gross Prediction- $50 million


This will be a word of mouth success if the film is good, but it's not something that I see breaking out opening weekend. Benedict Cumberbatch has fans, but not enough to drive a movie to massive opening weekend results. However, I believe that this movie will be good and I think that word of mouth will drive this biopic about Julian Assange to strong results.

CARRIE- October 18

Opening Weekend Prediction- $25 million
Total Gross Prediction- $70 million


This movie looks like garbage, and there's little to no point for a remake, but I believe that this film will become a hit based on the fact that it's the only horror film in the blockbuster horror month of October. Plus, Chloe Grace Moretz is a rising star and it does have that name brand recognition that horror fans love. But it isn't something that will rise above $100 million.

THE COUNSELOR- October 25

Opening Weekend Prediction- $20 million
Total Gross Prediction- $70 million


I don't know about this one. Everyone has mentioned this as an Oscar contender, and I believe that it could be, but I don't think that it has commercial appeal and I don't think that it's subject matter will appeal to adults. But, it does have big name stars with Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Javier Bardem, Cameron Diaz and Penelope Cruz, along with a big name director in Ridley Scott. But in the end, it's going to need major Oscar buzz to overcome its dark subject matter.

JACKASS PRESENTS: BAD GRANDPA- October 25

Opening Weekend Prediction- $39 million
Total Gross Prediction- $90 million


The Jackass franchise is very popular it seems and everyone also seems to like the brand of gross-out, real people comedy, but I don't see this being as much of a success as Jackass 3-D. Bad Grandpa doesn't have the ensemble cast or the same amount of gross-out gags, but it does still have outrageous humor and Johnny Knoxville dressed up like an old man, so it'll be a hit.

Well, that's it for part one. Come back soon for part 2 of my Fall Box Office Predictions.

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