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Friday Box Office Analysis

By Kim Hollis

November 25, 2017

Disney celebrates with fireworks, as they often do.

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Disney returns for another Thanksgiving movie extravaganza, and like so many of their animated projects released during this time frame (Moana, Frozen), it's a roaring success.

Lee Unkrich, the Pixar director previously responsible for Toy Story 3 (and serving as co-director on films like Monsters, Inc., Toy Story 2, and Finding Nemo), had an inkling of an idea a few years ago. That idea evolved into Coco, a story that celebrates Mexican culture and Dia de los Muertos (a Disney phrase - the real one is actually Dia de Muertos). A colorful celebration of family, music, and imagination, Coco was rapturously received by critics (96% fresh at Rotten Tomatoes) and audiences (A+ Cinemascore). That marvelous word-of-mouth led to a strong starting Wednesday of $13.2 million, followed by a Thanksgiving Day total of $8.9 million. With $22 million under its belt in the first couple of days, Coco was well on its way to a weekend of more than $70 million.

Indeed, on Friday, Coco tallied an additional $18.6 million. That's a smidge less than Moana's $21.8 million, but considering that Moana has a princess story bringing audiences in the door versus Coco's boy protagonist, that probably explains a little bit of the difference. (Also, Moana had the Rock. He almost certainly drove the box office higher.) Still, I think we have a pretty good model for Coco's weekend total with the trajectory taken by Moana just a year ago. A 2.6 multiplier would mean $48.4 million, but I think Disney/Pixar will go ahead and estimate it at $50 million. That will mean a four-day total of $72 million, and what promises to be a nice, long run through the holidays. This is the kind of movie that families can enjoy together multiple times - it actually begs to be rewatched.




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So, what does that mean for Justice League? Well, it was down 57% from last Friday, which sounds about like every other superhero film until you consider that yesterday was Black Friday and box office totals should be inflated to some degree. As an example, Thor: Ragnarok was up 16%, while Wonder declined less than 10%. But Justice League's result should be a shock to no one. Word-of-mouth is blah at best. There's a chance that Warner Bros. will estimate it at $50 million, but that will probably be a lie. I'd say $47 million sounds about right.

As for Wonder, last week's box office dynamo, it managed $8.7 million on Friday, down less than a million from the previous Friday total. I'd look for it to hold steady with last weekend's box office, coming in at around $27 million. It's a bona fide hit.

Also showing up in the top ten for the first time thanks to a modest expansion is Roman J. Israel, Esq., a Denzel Washington awards hopeful that hasn't been that well received. It earned $1.8 million from 1,669 venues, and should finish the weekend around $6 million. Also in the top ten with an expansion is Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, one of this year's awards frontrunners. With $1.6 million from 615 locations, it should come in with about $5 million.


Projected Estimates for the Top Ten (Three-Day)
Projected
Rank
Film
Estimated Gross
1 Coco 50.0
2 Justice League 47.0
3 Wonder 27.0
4 Thor: Ragnarok 19.0
5 Murder on the Orient Express 15.4
6 Daddy's Home 2 15.1
7 The Star 9.1
8 A Bad Moms Christmas 6.1
9 Roman J. Israel, Esq. 6.0
10 Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri 5.1

     


 
 

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Monday, December 18, 2017
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