Weekend Box Office

Box Office Guru Preview: Can Chuck and Larry Beat Up Harry?

by | July 19, 2007 | Comments

Two new star-driven Hollywood comedies face off at the box office this weekend in an attempt to unseat Harry Potter and the Order of Phoenix from the top spot. Adam Sandler headlines the gay marriage pic I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry while John Travolta goes one step further starring as a heavy-set mom in the musical Hairspray. For the first time in nearly a month, no new release gets an early midweek headstart.

Adam Sandler is back for his annual trip to blockbusterland in Chuck and Larry starring with Kevin James and Jessica Biel. The PG-13 film reunites Sandler with director Dennis Dugan (Big Daddy, Happy Gilmore)
and tells the story of two heterosexual firefighters who pretend to be married to each other to take advantage of the financial benefits. The former Saturday Night Live star only does one film per year and each comedy has a specific well-defined plot. That has led to a string of hits at the box office as fans so far have not had too much of him. Earlier this year, Eddie Murphy reached $34.2M with Norbit‘s opening while Will Ferrell bowed to $33M with Blades of Glory. Chuck should go a little higher.

The former wedding singer has scored $100M blockbusters in each of the last five years and aims to extend the streak to six with his latest summer offering. Last June, his comedy Click bowed to $40M on its way to $137.3M while 2005’s The Longest Yard debuted to $47.6M over three days before heading to a $158.1M final. Sandler is one of the most reliable box office draws in the business and his usual fan following, skewing a bit more male, should be back again this time. Reviews have been bad as usual but should not factor in much. Potter and Transformers will still provide some competition for young males and females may be swayed more to Hairspray. Universal’s marketing push has been on par with past films from the actor and Sandler has been hitting up all the standard talk shows for his yearly sales pitches. Tying the knot in 3,492 theaters, I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry could open to about $37M.


The happy couple

John Travolta, Michelle Pfeiffer, Queen Latifah, Christopher Walken,
Amanda Bynes, and newcomer Nicole Blonsky join forces for the lavish musical Hairspray, the 2007 movie version of the popular Broadway version of the 1988 cult film from John Waters. The new PG-rated pic has earned glowing praise from critics which will certainly help its cause in a summer full of action hits aimed at young males. Hairspray will skew more female and could appeal to multiple generations given the broad range of stars from teen queens to middle-aged sex symbols.

New Line does not have an easy sell here. However the studio was wise to program the release into the second half of summer knowing that audiences may be all actioned out by now and looking for something different. Musicals rarely hit the big screen during the summer although in 2001 Moulin Rouge opened wide to $13.7M and a $6,019 average leading to a respectable $57.4M gross. Hairspray hopes to become a hit like Chicago and Dreamgirls, rather than a dud like Rent or The Producers. Broadway musicals don’t always translate well onto the big screen but starpower often helps to make them click with moviegoers. Hairspray boasts a solid line-up of Hollywood stars and with strong reviews should
attract a good following at the box office. Dancing into more than 3,000 theaters, the Adam Shankman-directed film could collect about $19M this weekend.


Nikki Blonsky in Hairspray

A space team is sent on a mission to repair the dying sun in Fox Searchlight’s futuristic thriller Sunshine which launches in limited release in ten theaters on Friday. Michelle Yeoh, Chris Evans, and Cillian Murphy star in this latest film from director Danny Boyle which expands to more cities in the weeks ahead.


Something resembling sunshine in Sunshine

Warner Bros. will take on the two new comedies and try for a second weekend on top with Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Had the film opened on a Friday and concentrated its whole audience into three days, the dropoff would easily have been more than 60%. However, the Wednesday launch last week softened the Friday-to-Sunday tally so a smaller decline should result. The biggest foe will actually be Potter himself as the seventh and final book in the wildly popular series will go on sale early Saturday prompting millions of fans to invest their time into reading rather than munching on popcorn in front of a big screen. A 55% drop would give Phoenix around $35M for the frame and a mammoth 12-day cume of $210M.

Transformers should also have a decent hold since no new action entries are hitting the multiplexes. The Paramount/DreamWorks release might fall by 45% to roughly $20M boosting the total to a towering $262M. Disney and Pixar also look to see a good hold for Ratatouille. The animated rodent comedy may slide by 35% to $12M for a sum of $165M to date.

LAST YEAR: For the third straight weekend, Johnny Depp‘s Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest led the field and grossed $35.2M boosting the 17-day total to a staggering $321.9M. Sony’s animated film Monster House debuted in second place with $22.2M and was followed by fellow freshman Lady in the Water from Warner Bros. which disappointed with a $18M launch. Final domestic tallies reached $73.5M and $42.3M, respectively. Rounding out the top five were the comedies You, Me and Dupree with $12.8M and Little Man with $11M. Another pair of comedies debuted outside the top five. MGM’s Clerks II bowed to $10.1M on its way to $24.1M, while Fox’s My Super Ex-Girlfriend opened to only $8.6M leading to a $22.5M final.

Author: Gitesh Pandya, www.BoxOfficeGuru.com

Tag Cloud

hispanic heritage month rt labs critics edition scary movies 99% Exclusive Video marvel cinematic universe YouTube Premium dreamworks BET Mudbound series IFC Character Guide Women's History Month blockbusters Animation technology Cosplay Mary Tyler Moore RT History scary Universal Avengers Best Picture Mary Poppins Returns The Arrangement Food Network comics romance tv talk Comedy Central Pixar mcc cooking Nominations nbcuniversal Pop TV space strong female leads spanish language hispanic 2015 Musical Family 20th Century Fox Showtime rotten movies we love Fox Searchlight adaptation WarnerMedia Rocketman First Look game show SXSW all-time Valentine's Day The Walking Dead ID biopic pirates of the caribbean comic book movies telelvision game of thrones ghosts A24 stop motion Ghostbusters high school Apple TV Plus spider-man legend police drama archives ABC Family APB Masterpiece live action dragons Sneak Peek Biopics sequel popular Dark Horse Comics documentary Red Carpet Pet Sematary X-Men political drama talk show fresh Indigenous adventure Bravo HBO Max spain Film Festival Hear Us Out cancelled TV series YouTube action-comedy See It Skip It zombies slashers women FX directors Christmas Tokyo Olympics President comic book movie discovery deadpool HFPA 94th Oscars AMC Plus 2016 casting jurassic park Fall TV sequels scene in color film series werewolf basketball 2021 Extras Country DirecTV batman IFC Films 2017 scene in color scene in color series TV renewals BAFTA TV TCA Winter 2020 dark Action a nightmare on elm street Oscars Election Cannes HBO Music Quiz Acorn TV independent 007 Watching Series Brie Larson Instagram Live Hulu television interviews USA Network Teen twilight Premiere Dates worst movies disaster mutant Nickelodeon The CW crime thriller Comics on TV Lionsgate Opinion Apple Academy Awards 21st Century Fox Holidays summer TV preview Holiday diversity WGN Fox News Winners SundanceTV CBS All Access psycho superhero Broadway international social media Sundance Now Box Office Focus Features Spring TV australia MSNBC spanish feel good canceled TV shows cancelled television olympics Shudder Video Games TLC Hallmark Christmas movies Emmys streamig Lucasfilm best debate Musicals harry potter Trivia Comic-Con@Home 2021 Emmy Nominations TCA Awards streaming movies DC Comics FXX TBS concert 45 Television Critics Association Arrowverse FX on Hulu GIFs anthology Grammys BBC One dceu chucky live event satire RT21 Marvel Studios summer TV BET Awards Neflix Toys Paramount Pictures Winter TV 72 Emmy Awards cops Lifetime Christmas movies Disney Channel NYCC ABC Signature travel black comedy classics Best Director toy story Baby Yoda The Purge what to watch south america Peacock ABC dc Podcast king kong Paramount Network Pacific Islander vampires die hard parents Interview docudrama San Diego Comic-Con hist name the review versus Britbox Disney streaming service genre singing competition TV movies Fargo target scene in color art house cinemax rom-coms PaleyFest IMDb TV E3 godzilla Star Wars Celebration Marvel Television dogs halloween tv Writers Guild of America Endgame Rom-Com Sony Pictures lord of the rings crime science fiction Kids & Family Captain marvel Starz 73rd Emmy Awards Paramount Plus Amazon Prime Video Elton John spinoff Esquire superman nfl Rock Year in Review 71st Emmy Awards Awards Tour posters Disney Plus Comedy nature The Walt Disney Company Star Wars stand-up comedy Rocky VOD Freeform Amazon Studios hollywood spider-verse Reality Summer politics latino 2020 christmas movies Classic Film Western animated kaiju Reality Competition Tags: Comedy child's play mockumentary joker USA screenings Warner Bros. halloween Sci-Fi Wes Anderson Crunchyroll emmy awards Star Trek sopranos razzies TruTV Epix YouTube Red Song of Ice and Fire kong cancelled cartoon anime Calendar crossover Ovation ViacomCBS Sundance Crackle 4/20 Chilling Adventures of Sabrina finale A&E AMC Tomatazos Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Sony war serial killer japanese Countdown gangster japan ITV justice league screen actors guild BBC period drama Black Mirror boxoffice dexter PlayStation vs. Heroines Oscar First Reviews films know your critic zero dark thirty GoT 2019 Comic Book 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards Anna Paquin sitcom leaderboard indie Hollywood Foreign Press Association sports award winner MGM GLAAD Tubi rt labs NBC Discovery Channel 79th Golden Globes Awards Black History Month MCU CMT historical drama Legendary facebook royal family Pop french Awards Amazon Prime worst 1990s festivals TCA 2017 Pirates 90s italian Film DC Universe slasher transformers spy thriller Ellie Kemper teaser critic resources Columbia Pictures Native obi wan Chernobyl king arthur broadcast jamie lee curtis Cartoon Network SDCC critics unscripted docuseries comic books Best Actress psychological thriller Photos Super Bowl foreign aapi marvel comics Fantasy Martial Arts thriller adenture Schedule doctor who Nat Geo binge golden globe awards Sundance TV comiccon mob prank renewed TV shows festival Creative Arts Emmys TV One TV Land VICE Mary poppins reviews remakes james bond cancelled TV shows video TCM rotten true crime 93rd Oscars Geeked Week PBS SXSW 2022 scorecard VH1 video on demand Logo Tarantino Amazon zombie boxing documentaries suspense robots El Rey based on movie saw new zealand Prime Video obituary cats Vudu witnail sag awards Turner miniseries OWN TCA Adult Swim Marvel LGBTQ Alien Infographic TIFF CW Seed trophy crime drama book Mystery blockbuster theme song quibi streaming medical drama The Witch YA DGA Disney supernatural E! 2018 wonder woman laika BBC America indiana jones football blaxploitation news trailers ratings Travel Channel Pride Month movies Syfy heist movie richard e. Grant Paramount ESPN black franchise aliens NBA dramedy canceled venice book adaptation Horror golden globes Apple TV+ Stephen King LGBT Set visit Shondaland Netflix breaking bad Spike Hallmark National Geographic MTV cars Tumblr movie hidden camera CNN reboot Mindy Kaling target cults OneApp monster movies Funimation asian-american young adult new star wars movies natural history Netflix Christmas movies Certified Fresh comedies History The Academy Turner Classic Movies American Society of Cinematographers biography DC streaming service free movies rt archives Superheroe HBO Go kids New York Comic Con revenge children's TV comic Thanksgiving FOX Spectrum Originals fast and furious TNT Universal Pictures Trophy Talk Best and Worst Binge Guide criterion South by Southwest Film Festival romantic comedy mission: impossible Disney+ Disney Plus Image Comics Drama Walt Disney Pictures Television Academy 24 frames Marathons universal monsters summer preview Trailer Best Actor stoner CBS green book composers Superheroes toronto Lifetime elevated horror Polls and Games new york