Weekend Box Office Predictions: July 23 – 25, 2021

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

It’s looking to be a fairly close race for first place at the box office this weekend between Universal’s Old and Paramount’s Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins. While Snake Eyes will have the location count advantage this weekend (3,521 locations, in comparison to 3,355 locations for Old) and the advantage of playing on IMAX screens, those advantages may not be quite enough to make up for Old looking to be the slightly more anticipated of the two films. Thursday night previews for both films will start at 7PM. In the bigger picture, both films are unlikely to break out this weekend, as audiences are much more likely to wait for Disney’s release of Jungle Cruise next weekend on July 30 and Warner’s release of The Suicide Squad the following weekend on August 6. The start of the postponed 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo this weekend could also have a bit of an impact on this weekend’s box office in general.

Universal’s Old represents the latest film from writer-director M. Night Shyamalan. The supernatural horror film stars Gael García Bernal and Vicky Krieps. Shyamalan has experienced a career resurgence in recent years, starting with 2015’s The Visit, followed by 2017’s Split and 2019’s Glass (all three of which were also Universal releases). While Old doesn’t appear to be nearly as anticipated as Shyamalan’s most recent efforts, Shyamalan’s following should still be enough for Old to get off to a respectable start this weekend. Critical reviews for Old have been mixed thus far, more so positive than negative. Horror films have been a bit hit and miss at the box office this summer and Old could find itself in the middle of the pack; ahead of the $12.55 million opening of fellow Universal release The Forever Purge earlier this month, but behind the $24.10 million launch of The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It back in June. Look for Old to outpace Snake Eyes this weekend with a first place start of $16.8 million, which would give Old a per-location average of $5,007 for the frame.

Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins represents the third theatrical installment of Paramount’s G.I. Joe property, as well as a reboot of the G.I. Joe franchise. The film was directed by Robert Schwentke and stars Henry Golding. Unfortunately, pre-release buzz for Snake Eyes appears to be quite low for a G.I. Joe film, which may be due in part to the film also feeling like a spin-off as opposed to a pure reboot. Critical reviews for Snake Eyes have been mixed, more so negative than positive, which also won’t help matters for the film this weekend. As mentioned, Snake Eyes will have the advantage of playing on IMAX screens this weekend and also looks to be getting slightly more showtimes per location this weekend than Old on the average. At the very least, those advantages should help keep Snake Eyes close to Old this weekend. BoxOfficeReport expects Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins to debut in second place this weekend with $15.0 million, which would give the film a per-location average of $4,260.

After exceeding expectations last weekend with a healthy first place debut of $31.05 million, Warner’s Space Jam Legacy is likely to take a significant hit in its second weekend. Throughout the year, Warner’s day-and-date HBO Max releases have tended to experience sharp second weekend declines (which is likely due in part to opening weekend audiences being more willing to catch a day-and-date release in theatres in comparison to post-opening weekend audiences). Back in March, Warner’s Tom & Jerry declined 54 percent in its second weekend and odds are that Space Jam Legacy falls at least a bit more than that this weekend. Space Jam Legacy was also quite front-loaded towards Friday last weekend, though the film will also get a bit of a boost this weekend from no longer having to deal with the NBA Finals (as well as not facing any new direct competition for family audiences). Also of note is that the original Space Jam was fairly front-loaded in its own right by 1996 family film standards. Look for Space Jam Legacy to decline 56.5 percent this weekend to take third with $13.5 million, before stabilizing next weekend.

Disney’s Black Widow will look to stabilize in its third weekend of release. Last weekend Black Widow declined a concerning, but unsurprising, 68 percent to gross $25.85 million in its second weekend (which still represented the largest second weekend gross of any film since the re-opening of domestic theatres). Black Widow has started to show signs of stabilizing during the midweek this week, as the film’s Wednesday performance was down 48 percent from the previous Wednesday. At the same time, Black Widow will also lose some of that momentum this weekend from losing its IMAX screens to Snake Eyes and from seeing its showtimes per location average taking quite a hit this weekend (though on a positive note, Black Widow will be playing in only 25 fewer locations than last weekend for a total of 4,250 locations this weekend). A sizable, but respectable 50 percent decline would transfer into a fourth place take of $13.0 million for Black Widow this weekend.

Universal’s F9 continued to stabilize nicely last weekend by declining just 33 percent to take fourth with $7.67 million. F9 should continue to hold up well this weekend, though the film will have to deal with losing more locations than it did last weekend. Look for F9 to decrease a similar 33.5 percent to round out this weekend’s top five with a $5.1 million. Also of note is that with $157.86 million through Wednesday, F9 is currently the highest grossing film domestically since re-opening (having now passed A Quiet Place Part II), though Black Widow is on pace to eventually surpass F9 domestically.

Sony’s Escape Room: Tournament of Champions debuted in third place last weekend with an uneventful $8.80 million. Escape Room: Tournament of Champions will likely experience a second weekend decline a bit sharper than the 51 percent 2019’s Escape Room fell during in its second weekend, due in part to the new direct competition from Old. A 53 percent decline would give Escape Room: Tournament of Champions of a sixth place take of $4.1 million this weekend.

As for some of this weekend’s other holdovers, Universal and DreamWorks Animation’s The Boss Baby: Family Business could stabilize a bit this weekend with the opening of Space Jam Legacy now behind us. A solid 37 percent decline would give The Boss Baby: Family Business a seventh place take of $3.0 million this weekend. Fellow Universal release The Forever Purge could decrease a respectable 44 percent to land in eighth with $2.3 million.

Opening in semi-wide release this weekend is Roadside Attraction’s Joe Bell. The Reinaldo Marcus Green directed drama is based on the true story of Joe Bell and his son Jadin Bell and stars Mark Wahlberg and Reid Miller. Joe Bell will be playing in 1,093 locations this weekend, but unfortunately critical reviews have been mostly negative for the film. The film’s reviews will make it tough for Joe Bell to reach the per-location average heights of Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain and Pig last weekend. BoxOfficeReport isn’t making an official prediction for Joe Bell this weekend, but the film could find itself in the same general area as Paramount’s A Quiet Place Part II and Focus’ Roadrunner this weekend for places ninth through eleventh.

Read full predictions at BoxOfficeReport.com

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