June 2010 Forecast
By Michael Lynderey
June 4, 2010
June 2010 appears relatively massive, with a slow streak ending on the 18th and giving way to an escalation of blockbusters - in what looks to be 15 days of supergargantuan box office. As usual, the month's sequels take the top two spots.
1. Toy Story 3 (June 18, 2010)
When the name of the film is "Toy Story 3", what else does one really have to say? It's been leading up to this for these last 11 years, as Toy Story fans hungered for a sequel, and had their appetite sated only with one brilliant (or so I'm told) Pixar film after the other. But now here is that holy grail at last, and its credentials are certainly impeccable: it's written by Michael Arndt, of Little Miss Sunshine fame, it's got almost the entire original voice cast back (I can almost hear the box office numbers ballooning as I type this), and it appears to be loaded with frankly Shrekian humor (the Barbie and Ken bits). Oh, and, by the way, it's in 3D. Ka-ching. To be honest, my interest in the film is purely professional: Toy Story 3 represents what I believe to be the summer's last college try at beating Alice in Wonderland for the title of highest grossing film of 2010. So, just how high can it go? Will anything stop Pixar from their plans of world domination? I already know the answer to the second question. It's the first that we'll have to wait a few weeks to resolve.
Opening weekend: $127 million / Total gross: $370 million
2. The Twilight Saga: Eclipse (June 30, 2010)
The month's other big sequel, and one that's not nearly as likely to break out into the really big digits. Topically enough, Twilight 3's trailers seem to position it as a summer action film - vampires vs. werewolves and so on - with the soppy love triangle stuff going somewhat on the down-lo this time, at least at first glance. The Twilight fanbase does not appear to have dwindled in number any, and the seven months since the last picture ought to have been long enough to re-charge their appetites. On the minus side, there's no new Taylor Lautner being added to the mix this time around (just the old Taylor Lautner, along with the rest of the cast, making their dutiful returns). I believe the series' high point is behind us, but of course, one thing the Twilight films have indulged in doing is proving box office analysts wrong again, and again - and again?
Opening weekend: $165 million (five-day) / Total gross: $276 million
3. The A-Team (June 11, 2010)
I don't know much about the original series, other than the fact of its existence, but The A-Team is looking like prime rib action stuff to me. It has snapped up some rising stars from last summer (Bradley Cooper, Sharlto Copley), along with a grizzled veteran (Liam Neeson), an unknown newcomer in the role of a semi-iconic character (Quinton "Rampage" Jackson), and some intriguingly cast supporting players (Jessica Biel, as the feisty love interest, and Patrick Wilson, perhaps finally finding his niche as a villain). Occasional doses of comic relief appear to abound, and it's all produced by not just Ridley but also Tony Scott, giving it some unchallenged credibility in its genre. In short, The A-Team is clearly being positioned as your granddaddy's basic good old-fashioned summer blockbuster (in this scenario, granddaddy would have been about 15 in 2001), and so it will be. Could $200 million be in the works somehow? It's doubtful, but plans do often have ways of coming together.
Opening weekend: $57 million / Total gross: $143 million