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Weekend Forecast for October 5-7, 2012

By Reagen Sulewski

October 5, 2012

This is what he'll do to your home if you do not see Taken 2 this weekend.

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He can be forgiven for expecting people to, since for the most part he's gotten most of his fans to follow him through his flights of fancy. I mean, even Dark Shadows opened reasonably well and that had “what were they thinking” written all over it. His last stop-motion outing, Corpse Bride, opened to around $19 million despite an off-putting title and premise, and The Nightmare Before Christmas, which has his name attached as producer, has turned into something of an annual tradition. For what it's worth Frankenweenie has a decent voice cast, including Winona Ryder, Martin Short, Catherine O'Hara and Martin Landau, but those are by no means the reasons people would want to see this film. It's Burton's name, and his well-honed grasp of the macabre that will pull people in, although like ParaNorman from a few weeks ago, the focus on a pre-teen character will limit the film somewhat. I'd look for around $17 million here.

After a surprise debut in sixth spot last weekend in limited release, Pitch Perfect expands to over 2,700 venues this weekend. Basically Glee: The College Years, Anna Kendrick stars as a new recruit to an all-female a capella group in college, which is locked in a fierce rivalry with its all-male counterpart on campus. With her new energy and pluck, yada yada yada, you all know how this works.

The film is essentially the vocal version of the Step Up movies, which as we'll all far too aware, have made to at least their fourth outing, albeit with some signs of fatigue. Singing competitions are inherently less visual and a bit harder to make exciting on screen, so the film seems to have wisely compensated for that by adding some raunch and comedy with a group of quirky characters. Other than Kendrick, none of them are particularly well known, although there's a few “oh him/her... from the thing with the guy...” actors in the cast. The famousness or lack thereof of the cast is obviously pretty irrelevant judging by last weekend's $5 million opening on 335 screens. With the expansion, this should jump up to around $9 million.




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Hotel Transylvania set a September record with $42 million in its debut and more importantly gave Adam Sandler a hit after a couple of terrible films in a row. Never mind that it's an animated film. It still counts. Suddenly it's a crowded family film market, although Transylvania has an advantage as a more “traditionally” animated film versus the stop-motion animated Frankenweenie, a medium which is yet to see its first huge hit in the current animation climate. I expect a decent holdover here at around $25 million.

The potentially alienating Looper also opened strongly, starting with just under $21 million, and avoiding the fate of another sci-fi fall dystopian film, In Time, by you know, actually being good. All those involved, particularly director Rian Johnson, are going to see career boosts from this, as its modest $30 million budget will be covered quite shortly. Even good sci-fi struggles with word-of-mouth, or at least turning that into strong box office, as fans of it are extremely eager, not to put too fine a point on it. Suffice it to say that I think a second weekend of $12 million would be an excellent showing.


Forecast: Weekend of October 5-7, 2012
Rank
Film
Number of
Sites
Changes in Sites
from Last
Estimated
Gross ($)
1 Taken 2 3,661 New 37.6
2 Hotel Transylvania 3,352 +3 25.1
3 Frankenweenie 3,005 New 17.4
4 Looper 2,993 +1 11.8
5 Pitch Perfect 2,770 -2,435 9.3
6 End of Watch 2,370 -410 4.7
7 Trouble With the Curve 3,003 -209 4.5
8 House at the End of the Street 2,720 -363 4.0
9 Finding Nemo 3D 1,746 -893 2.3
10 The Master 864 +8 1.9

Continued:       1       2

     


 
 

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