Weekend Box Office Predictions: July 2 – 4, 2021

Weekend box office predictions are provided by Daniel Garris, courtesy of BoxOfficeReport.com.

After debuting with a strong $70.04 million last weekend, Universal’s F9 will look to remain in first place at the box office over the Independence Day holiday frame. Films from The Fast and the Furious franchise tend to be quite front-loaded towards opening weekend and that should continue to be the case with F9. More recent second weekend declines for films from The Fast and the Furious franchise have included 61 percent for 2017’s The Fate of the Furious and 58 percent for 2019’s Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw. Word of mouth for F9 appears to be good, though perhaps not as strong as that of most other The Fast and the Furious films, as F9 received a B+ rating on CinemaScore. F9 will benefit this weekend from holding onto IMAX screens and from potentially getting a small boost from moviegoers who want to catch the film (or catch it again) before Disney’s highly anticipated Black Widow enters the marketplace next weekend on July 9. On Wednesday, F9 grossed $5.02 million, which brings the film’s six-day total to $88.16 million. Look for F9 to take in $27.0 million this weekend, which would represent a 61 percent decline from last weekend and set a new benchmark for the largest second weekend gross since the re-opening of domestic theatres (easily topping the $19.27 million second weekend gross of A Quiet Place Part II last month).

Universal will also look to claim both second and third place this weekend, as the studio is releasing both DreamWorks Animation’s The Boss Baby: Family Business and The Forever Purge this weekend. The Boss Baby: Family Business looks to be the stronger of the two new releases, thanks in part to playing in 3,640 locations this weekend (as opposed to 3,051 locations for The Forever Purge). The Boss Baby: Family Business is the sequel to the 2017 DreamWorks Animation computer animated film The Boss Baby, which debuted with $50.20 million and went on to gross $175.00 million domestically. The Boss Baby: Family Business was directed by Tom McGrath and features the vocal talent of Alec Baldwin, James Marsden and Amy Sedaris. The Boss Baby: Family Business will have Thursday preview shows beginning at 4PM and is also releasing day-and-date this weekend, as the film will be available via streaming on Peacock to all premium subscribers. Critical reviews for The Boss Baby: Family Business have been mixed, but that was also the case for the film’s predecessor. Since the re-opening of domestic theatres, family films in particular have been tending to open smaller and going on to display stronger than usual holding power and it appears likely that The Boss Baby: Family Business will continue that trend. And like the recent Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway (which debuted with $10.10 million last month), The Boss Baby: Family Business may also represent another animated sequel that family audiences just weren’t anticipating all that much to begin with. With that said, The Boss Baby: Family Business could register the largest opening weekend for a family film since the re-opening of theatres (when not counting Cruella) with a second place take of $16.5 million this weekend (for a per-location average of $4,533), which would top the $14.11 million start of Tom & Jerry back in February.

Universal’s The Forever Purge represents the fifth installment of The Purge horror franchise. Critical reviews for the Everardo Gout directed sequel have been mixed, which has typically been the case for the previous films of the franchise. The Forever Purge will have Thursday night preview shows beginning at 7PM. While The Purge franchise has been an extremely consistent performer at the domestic box office (the previous four films all finished with final grosses in the area of $64 million to $79 million), there just doesn’t seem to be much buzz around The Forever Purge (the film’s relatively low YouTube trailer views count has been especially concerning). The three-year gap between 2018’s The First Purge and The Forever Purge probably hasn’t helped matters (the first four films of the franchise were released within a window of just over five years); furthermore The Forever Purge has a very tough release date right in between F9 and Black Widow and horror fans may also be satisfied at the moment after the stronger than expected recent performances of A Quiet Place Part II and The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It (The Forever Purge is much more likely to open closer to the recent $8.75 million start of Spiral). One factor that could still help The Forever Purge this weekend is that over the years the franchise has tended to be quite front-loaded towards opening weekend. A per-location average of $3,835 would transfer into a third place start of $11.7 million for The Forever Purge this weekend.

Paramount’s A Quiet Place Part II has been holding up very nicely for a high-profile horror sequel and should continue to do so this weekend. Last weekend A Quiet Place Part II declined just 32 percent to claim second with $6.19 million. This weekend A Quiet Place Part II could decrease a similar 35 percent to gross $4.0 million for fourth place, as the film continues to inch closer to the $150 million domestic mark.

As for some of this weekend’s other holdovers, Sony’s Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway could decline 37 percent to take fifth with $3.0 million (in the face of new competition for family audiences from The Boss Baby: Family Business), Disney’s Cruella could continue to hold up well by decreasing just 26 percent to claim sixth with $2.8 million and Lionsgate’s Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard could start to stabilize a bit to slow 44 percent to land in seventh with $2.7 million.

A24’s Zola started out its box office run with $0.505 million on Wednesday from a semi-wide 1,468 locations. Zola was directed by Janicza Bravo and stars Taylour Paige and Riley Keough. Critical reviews for the film have been strong. With the film’s performance on Wednesday in mind, Zola could start out in eighth place with $1.9 million over the three-day weekend, for a five-day launch in the area of $2.8 million.

Also arriving in theatres this weekend is Disney’s release of Searchlight’s Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised). The Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson directed music documentary on the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival has received exceptional critical reviews. Summer of Soul will be playing in a moderate 752 locations this weekend and is also opening day-and-date via streaming on Hulu. BoxOfficeReport isn’t making an official prediction for Summer of Soul this weekend.

Read full predictions at BoxOfficeReport.com

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