June 2010 Forecast
By Michael Lynderey
June 4, 2010
4. Grown Ups (June 25, 2010)
Now this is what I like to see: big stars teaming up in a summer blockbuster that's geared at least somewhat towards adults, and isn't based off a TV show, comic book, late 1980s film, or YouTube sketch. This one's got Adam Sandler, returning to his roots after last year's somber Funny People; Kevin James, coming off the massive bout of blockbuster inexplicability that was Paul Blart and getting ready to launch his own streak of Sandler-esque hits (trust me, they're coming); Chris Rock, foiled again recently in Death at a Funeral; and perpetual hangers-on Rob Schneider and David Spade, mixing it up with some choice supporting actresses (Salma Hayek, Maria Bello, Maya Rudolph, and whoever it is that plays Schneider's somewhat older beloved). Let there be no mistake: I don't think Grown Ups will be this decade's City Slickers. Not even close. But there's something to be said for it all the same, and the box office should certainly live up to what we've come to expect from Sandler's June escapades. The presence of James will be a buffer.
Opening weekend: $48 million / Total gross: $138 million
5. Knight & Day (June 25, 2010)
Here's a special occasion: Knight & Day marks Tom Cruise's first headlining role in a summer movie since Mission: Impossible III back in 2006, and it's got Cameron Diaz, too. Of course, many box office analysts seem to believe that Cruise's clout has been hurt some because of whatever off-screen behavior he has dabbled in; this is an opinion that I do not share, especially considering that none of his 2001-2004 films did much better than his 2006-2008 releases (as a matter of fact, his highest grossing film, War of the Worlds, was released in the key month of June 2005). That said, I'm a little mixed on this particular title's fortunes, especially considering what a crowded menagerie of certain blockbusters it's being dropped right into the middle of. This type of action movie - one that's based on the appeal of a star, rather than that of a pre-established property - has been waning lately, and it's going to take some real quality on the film's part to bring it up to Mr. & Mrs. Smith numbers, especially when faced against Twilight, Toy Story, and the Sandler-James beach party. Keep your fingers crossed.
Opening weekend: $39 million / Total gross: $109 million
6. The Karate Kid (June 11, 2010)
We're now working our way through remaking the summer of 1984, and The Karate Kid is an inevitable stop along the way. So, what has this particular redo brought us? Jackie Chan is perhaps too obvious a choice for his role, but Taraji P. Henson is always welcome, and, as the son of Jada Pinkett and Will Smith, Jaden Smith is of course a full-blooded movie star, at least by birth. I don't know how much of an appetite there is for Karate Kid '10, but it ought to get kids intrigued enough to check it out, even if it doesn't have much appeal to older folk. There's some good early critical buzz, so legs aren't out of the question. And in general, summer seems like the right time for this plot - moving to China and having adventures and learning karate on the Great Wall - that sort of thing. Doesn't often happen in November, say, or April, does it?
Opening weekend: $22 million / Total gross: $78 million