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

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