Quite a decent offering we’ve got this weekend, four new entries, all able to draw a decent audience under normal circumstances. We’ve got sports drama Moneyball, starring Brad Pitt, family adventure Dolphin Tale and action movies Abduction and Killer Elite. So, how will each one of this perform against The Lion King? The answer should be right after the break.
I have to be honest, I’m not quite sold on the box office power of Moneyball, at least not enough to declare it a clear winner against The Lion King 3D. The later has had great legs through the week so I’m positive it will have a good hold. On the other hand, Moneyball has been a long time coming, at one point having Steven Soderbergh attached to direct. Today what we have is Brad Pitt (who’s been on this for years), Jonah Hill and Philip Seymor (working with director Bennett Miller again after Capote 6 years ago). Now sports dramas in general, with the exception of the Rocky series, The Blind Side and a few others, have never been big hits at the box office so I don’t expect things to change with this movie. I’m going to say $22 million for Moneyball, maybe enough for 1st place.
The Lion King 3D has a 50/50 chance to take the top spot again, depending on how much business Dolphin Tale steals from it. You see, 2 years ago Sony released an 3D animated flick called Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs around the same time. That movie opened ridiculously similar to The Lion King 3D so obviously I’m going to base my prediction on how that movie performed on its second weekend. Thing is Cloudy had half the weekday numbers The Lion King has so it wouldn’t be a stretch to think that the 3D remastered version could potentially finish north of $25 million over the weekend. Thing is Cloudy didn’t have another 3D family movie in its second week so I’m going to say The Lion King 3D makes $21 million for 2nd place.
Dolphin Tale, the second new movie of the week, comes from Warner Bros in not as glorious as it once was 3D. Having the most theaters (3507) out of all the pictures released today, the studio is definitely expecting something north of $15 million. Given the great reviews it’s getting (86% on Rotten Tomatoes right now) I won’t be surprised if it opens with $17 million for 3rd place.
Abduction is the third movie that comes out today and Taylor Lautner’s first true box office test. We already know he’s had great success in the Twilight Saga or with an ensemble cast in Valentines Day, but can he replicate that with Abduction? Sorry fans out there but I’m thinking no. That being said, it would be ridiculous to expect that same level of success out of an utterly mediocre action movie like Abduction. Still, he should be able to pull in a good $12 million or so for 4th place.
For the last spot in the top 5 we have no less then three movies fighting, namely Contagion, Drive and new entry Killer Elite. The former stars Jason Statham, Robert DeNiro, Clive Owen and Chuck‘s Yvonne Strahovski. A $10 million opening might be enough for this since I doubt it was all that expensive to make (and if it was, well tough luck). Contagion and Drive should both gross around $7-8 million.
Next week we don’t get a break cause we have yet again four movies. Cancer drama/comedy 50/50, romantic comedy where Anna Faris gets naked again called What’s Your Number, Daniel Craig and wife Rachel Weisz amnesia thriller Dream House and christian cop drama Courageous from the same guys that brought us the christian fireman drama Fireproof.