Weekend Forecast for June 6-8, 2008
By Reagen Sulewski
June 6, 2008
At first viewing, I thought we were perhaps heading for Little Nicky territory, with some painfully unfunny bits – you know the ones I'm talking about, they largely involve feet – leading the way in the ads. Although I haven't personally come around on how I feel about it, I think that the average Sandler fan will probably still go with him on the zaniness. If he hadn't shaken them with I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry, this probably won't either. I think it'll dip a little below some of his recent films, but still come in with about $30 million for the weekend.
The Sex and the City movie was a monumental hit, earning $57 million in its opening weekend. How it did was extremely telling about its future chances, or at least those relative to that opening weekend. With $27 million on its first day, $17.5 on Saturday and $12.5 million on Sunday, it was a classically front-loaded film, although unique in that it was a female-targeted movie exhibiting this behavior. Opening night viewing parties seemed to tell the story of the weekend, but once those happened, a large amount of its fanbase was exhausted. It's still nothing to shake a stick at for a film led by Sarah Jessica Parker and three other actresses who are lucky to get roles outside of made-for-TV movies these days. HBO can be quite happy with the results, even if they may be largely unrepeatable. Look for a second weekend of $24 million, which should still get it over the $100 million mark overall.
Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull took a little bit of a tumble in its second frame, falling from a $100 million three day total to $44 million and change. Though this looks troubling for Spielberg, Lucas, Ford and company, there are a couple things to keep in mind. One, it opened on Memorial Day Weekend, and it's a rare (read: basically nonexistent) film that can navigate the waters of the post-Memorial Day weekend safely. Two, weekday results are set to kick up to impressive amounts very, very soon. I foresee a third weekend of $27 million, which would get it over the $250 million plateau and make it the highest grossing film of the series, even if the previous record for it was set all the way back with the first film in 1981.
Last weekend was a very good one for films that didn't have traditionally strong leads. The Strangers, with just Felicity's Scott Speedman, and Liv Tyler to show for star power, opened to $21 million. Of course, it wasn't Mr. Underworld and Arwen who sold this film, it was some disturbing and effectively creepy footage in the ads that did it. Despite this strong start, horror in general doesn't carry over too well in following weeks, especially in crowded summer marketplaces. This feels very much like a one and done film, but with nothing to be ashamed of if that happens, based on its single digit millions budget. Give it $9 million this weekend.
Iron Man continues to cruise along with a rarely seen consistency for blockbuster film, having decreased its decline in each consecutive week. It's a couple weeks away from $300 million, but it will get there, and it's one of the more remarkable stories of the summer for doing so. Give this $8 million for its fifth weekend. Meanwhile Prince Caspian is struggling to hit even half the total of the first Narnia movie, having started slow and then shed audiences in droves, something not easy to do for a family film. Disney and Walden media miscalculated a little with this one, not realizing how limited in scope the Narnia fanbase was. With $7 million this weekend, it will get to "just" $127 million or so.