Box Office Talk: ‘Planes’, ‘Elysium’, ‘We’re the Millers’, ‘Percy Jackson’ Predictions

A few weeks back The Conjuring was the only film of 4 released to have a successful debut weekend. 2 of the other 3 films, Turboand Red 2, received positive Cinemascores but didn’t generate big box office numbers. The last of the 4 films released, R.I.P.D., opened with very low expectations which weren’t even met. This weekend sees another 4 new films being released, only this time all the releases are expected to open very well.

It’s been 3.5 years since Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief. While fans of the Rick Riordan series of books were disappointed by the film, it went on to gross over $226 million worldwide. Considering everything, including many undeserving films, gets a sequel it isn’t surprising that Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters was made. Thor Freudenthal replaced Christopher Columbus as director, and the hope was that the new guy would be more true to the books. Let’s be honest though, it’s rare a movie every does a book just in the eyes of literary fans. Unfortunately, I believe the franchise suffers from a bigger issue; significant delays between films. For Percy Jackson & Olympians: The Lightning Thief the characters were aged a few years from those in the book, and as I said it’s been 3.5 years since that film’s release. At 21 Logan Lerman (Percy) is the youngest of the franchise’s regular actors while Alexandra Daddario (Annabeth), Brandtom T. Jackson (Grover) and Jake Abel (Luke) are all over the age of 26, meaning that there is little time for a string of sequels before the actors will have outgrown (if they already haven’t) the parts. I do believe that fans of the books and those that enjoyed the first film will come back to see how Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters fares, but I think there’s little chance that a lot of new fans emerge. I think that there is potential for this series, but a reboot is more likely in order to cast younger actors and to follow the ‘Harry Potter’ films model and not wasting time between them.

We’re the Millers stars Jennifer Anniston, Jason Sudeikis, Emma Roberts, and Will Poulter posing as a happy-go-lucky family on a vacation trip to Mexico, when it reality they are working together to smuggle ‘a smidge’ of marijuana into the United States. R-rated comedies, with the exception of The Hangover Part III, have performed very well lately. The storylines for most of these films are fairly simple, but the actors involved come across as genuinely funny and the camaraderie between the characters is what’s most enjoyable and their interactions often most funny. Considering how well Identity Thief and The Heat did during their runs, I expect We’re the Millers to open very strong and do perform well over the next few weeks.

Disney’s new film Planes was originally intended to be a direct-to-DVD feature, but for whatever reason the studio decided it would be a good idea to put the animated film into theaters. Although it doesn’t surprise me that Disney would make an attempt to cash in on Pixar’s Cars franchise, as we’ve seen classics likeCinderella and The Lion King sequels receive the direct-to-DVD treatment. It is surprising to see Disney put their name on a Pixar spinoff, which leads me to believe that they had little hope for the film and thought the Disney brand would take less heat than the Pixar brand would. Regardless, the Disney brand does hold weight and while I don’t believe Planes will become a classic in any sense of the word, there will be a decent sized audience for the film. I’ll be shocked if this ends its domestic run too much higher than its $50 million budget.

The weekend’s film with the biggest box office potential is the science fiction filmElysium from heralded District 9 director Neill Blomkamp. Working with a $30 million budget, Blomkamp turned District 9 into $210+ million worldwide sensation.Elysium‘s budget is $115 million and the film stars Matt Damon and Jodie Foster; proven actors with an excellent track record of quality films. However, in a science fiction dominated year it doesn’t seem to offer anything to make it stand out above the rest. I do believe that Elysium will the weekend battle comfortably, but how well it does in the long run will be decided by the film’s word of mouth.

Here’s how I see the Top 10

Box Office Predictions

RANK
TITLE
JOE’S PREDICTIONS
1 Elysium $35,500,000
2 Planes $27,500,000
3 We’re The Millers $20,000,000 (3-day)
$28,000,000 (5-day)
4 Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters $19,000,000 (3-day)
$25,000,000 (5-day)
5 2 Guns $14,100,000
6 The Wolverine $10,200,000
7 The Smurfs 2 $9,300,000
8 The Conjuring $7,800,000
9 Despicable Me 2 $6,300,000
10 Grown Ups 2 $4,400,000

With 4 new films opening, 2 for the 5-day, you’d think there’d be plenty of opportunities for maneuvering. However, most of our predictors are thinking along the same lines for most the weekend’s releases. We’re the Millers has everyone separated by less than $5M for its 5-day opening. Shane ($31) represents the high end, while Jason ($26.8) represents the low. Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters is the other film everyone posted 5-day openers for, and less than $10M separates each person. Daniel ($26.9M) was most optimistic, while Trevor ($18M) has very little hope for the delayed sequel. Not everyone sees Disney’s Planeshaving a good opening. I ($27.5M) expect a moderately decent enough opening, while Jason ($17M) thinks the film just about bombs. Finally, we have Elysium, the film everyone expect to easily win the weekend. Shane ($40M) is the only person who sees the film opening in the $40M range, and Jason ($29.7M) is the only person seeing the film opening under $30M. The consensus is that we should expect a very nice sized turnout overall at the box office, and that’s always a good thing.

Don’t forget to join in on the game over at Box Office Ace.

Player /
Site
We’re The Millers
(5-day)
Percy Jackson:
Sea of Monsters
(5-day)
Elysium
Planes
Joe
Two Dude Review
$28M $25M $35.5M $27.5M
Daniel
Daniel’s Film Reviews
$28.6M $26.9M $38.4M $20.2M
Todd
All My Life…I Wanted To Be A Blogster
$27.2M $21.9M $33.7M $19.1M
Nick
The Cinematic Katzenjammer
$29M $23M $37M $18M
Jason
Movie Mavericks
$26.8M $21.2M $29.7M $17M
Trevor
Movie Mavericks
$28M $18M $32M $26M
Shane
The Cinematic Katzenjammer
$31M $22M $40M $25M

Written By Joe

You can find Joe’s site at Two Dude Review.


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