Weekend box office predictions are provided by Daniel Garris, courtesy of BoxOfficeReport.com.
After a stronger than expected Thanksgiving weekend start, Universal and DreamWorks Animation’s The Croods: A New Age is set to remain comfortably in first place at the box office this weekend. The Croods: A New Age is coming off of a $9.72 million performance over the three-day weekend (which represented the largest three-day weekend for any film since theatres re-opened back in August) and a $14.27 million five-day launch. This weekend and over the next few weeks, The Croods: A New Age will be helped out by not facing any new competition for family audiences and by the film’s solid critical reviews and very good word of mouth among audiences (the film received a strong A rating on CinemaScore). The Croods: A New Age is playing in 2,205 locations this weekend (which is down only 6 locations from last weekend’s count).
Back in September, Tenet declined 33 percent to take in an estimated $6.35 million in its second weekend of wide release. Given that films (especially family films) typically experience sizeable percentage declines the weekend after Thanksgiving weekend, The Croods: A New Age will likely experience a significantly larger second weekend slide than Tenet did. It also looks like the decrease in showtimes per location average for The Croods: A New Age at many theatres this weekend will be greater than the rate of decrease in showtimes per location average for Tenet during its second weekend of wide release. In recent years high-profile computer animated Thanksgiving weekend releases have decreased anywhere from 46 percent to 61 percent in their second weekend of release and with grosses being more spread out in general in the current theatrical environment, The Croods: A New Age could find itself towards the lower end of that range with a 50 percent second weekend decline to take in $4.9M this weekend. That will make The Croods: A New Age the sixth consecutive #1 film at the domestic box office for Universal Filmed Entertainment Group.
Even under typical circumstances, the weekend after Thanksgiving weekend tends to see some of the smallest opening weekends of the year and obviously the current market limitations will make things even tougher for Half Brothers and All My Life this weekend. The empty marketplace outside of The Croods: A New Age could help Half Brothers and All My Life slightly this weekend, but at the same time both films are also only getting a select amount of daily showtimes at many theatres this weekend. In relationship to one another, in addition to playing in more locations, Half Brothers could also have an advantage from looking like a more upbeat film (especially during the holiday season). Half Brothers could claim second place this weekend with $0.80 million (for a per-location average just under $585) and All My Life could follow in third with $0.40 million (for a per-location average just over $410).
Universal’s Freaky and 101 Studios’ The War with Grandpa are likely to follow closely behind All My Life for fourth and fifth place this weekend. Last weekend Freaky declined 38 percent to take in $0.80 million, while The War with Grandpa was down just 21 percent to gross $0.59 million. Both films will be maintaining most of their locations this weekend; Freaky will be playing in 1,502 locations – down 233 from last weekend and The War with Grandpa will be playing in 1,285 locations – down 215 from last weekend, though it also appears that Freaky will experience a sharp decline in its showtimes per location average at many theatres this weekend. Look for Freaky to decline 52 percent this weekend to take in $0.38 million and for The War with Grandpa to decrease 44 percent to register $0.33 million.
While most of Disney’s recent re-issues have been aimed at family audiences, this weekend Disney will be re-issuing 20th Century’s 1988 action classic Die Hard. As the weeks have gone on, Disney’s weekly re-issues have started to see diminishing returns. The Bruce Willis-led Die Hard not being aimed at family audiences could help it stand out a bit from most of Disney’s other recent re-issues, but at the same time, potential for Die Hard will also be limited from the film playing in a modest 1,172 locations this weekend. Three weeks ago, Guardians of the Galaxy took in $0.41 million from 1,560 locations (for a per-location average of $260). A similar per-location average just over $255 for Die Hard would transfer into a weekend take of $0.30 million for the film and a sixth place finish for the frame.