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Weekend Forecast for January 16-18, 2015

By Reagen Sulewski

January 16, 2015

He drinks because someone just asked Josh Gad to sing In Summer again.

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These films are often self-limiting, in that there's a very narrow age range that actually entertains the option that it's worth their time – spotting anyone older than 12 that doesn't have kids or is reviewing the film should be difficult to find. Bearing that in mind (unintentional! I swear), Paddington should find about $13 million this weekend.

In what's kind of a depressing development, legendary thriller director Michael Mann has a film releasing in January, Blackhat. It stars Chris Hemsworth as a convicted hacker sprung to help chase down a group of international cyberterrorists. Points, I suppose, for that premise not sounding so ridiculous as it once did, but still the notion of a buff hacker running around international locations and viewing hacks in real time as visualized data is still pretty lazy filmmaking, and not the kind of thing you'd expect out of the person who made The Insider, Heat and Collateral. I'd like to think that this is some other director who just has the same name, maybe (to steal a site-mate's joke) Michael W.S. Mann.

After Miami Vice and Public Enemies, it may be time to assess the idea that Mann has lost his fastball, and in a very rapid fashion. While the subject is very au currant, the execution looks dismal, and not too different from other computer focused thrillers like Anti-Trust and Paranoia (about which the Hemsworth brothers can commiserate). The presence of Thor himself might help matters, but ultimately I'd say we're looking at a weekend of about $9 million.

Taken 3 leapt to the top of the charts last weekend with a $39 million opening, lower than Taken 2's, but still ahead of the original film in the franchise. What Taken 3 definitely can't count on is the legs of the first film, which opened in the same time frame. Pretty soon, Liam Neeson will run out of asses to kick, and today is not quite that day, but it's getting close. A drop to $18 million is appropriate here.




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The behavior of Selma this week will be interesting, as it's a Best Picture nominee, but has essentially been snubbed with only that plus a Best Song nomination, a basically unprecedented situation, and something that smacks of tokenism. While it doesn't have the support of a bunch of nominations, there's the feeling of a backlash effect forming. And a snub for a film about Martin Luther King Jr. coming *on* Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend could have a powerful impact. I would not be surprised to see a big uptick in its business, to around $16 million.

The Imitation Game could be another big winner in the Oscar nomination sweepstakes, as it brought in eight nominations and has already been showing some legs. With these key factors in play, it should bump up to about $9 million this weekend.

The rest of this week's significant earners all involve the Oscars, albeit not as Best Picture candidates. Into the Woods, The Hobbit: The Last One and Unbroken all trickle in with one to a handful of nominations each, and as such should not see much, if any, bump from these nominations. At best, they might see a bit less drop than usual. Expect these to land in the $5 to $7 million range this weekend.


Forecast: Weekend of January 16-18, 2015
Rank
Film
Number of
Sites
Changes in Sites
from Last
Estimated
Gross ($)
1 American Sniper 3,555 +3,551 40.3
2 The Wedding Ringer 3,003 New 21.0
3 Taken 3 3,594 0 18.5
4 Selma N/A N/A 15.7
5 Paddington 3,303 New 13.4
6 Blackhat 2,567 New 9.2
7 The Imitation Game 1,611 +45 8.8
8 Into the Woods 2,758 -75 7.3
9 Unbroken 2,599 -702 6.0
10 The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies 2,220 -1,182 5.5

Continued:       1       2       3

     


 
 

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