Weekend Box Office

Box Office Guru Preview: Just What Moviegoers Want, Another Nic Cage Action Flick

by | April 26, 2007 | Comments

For the fourth consecutive weekend, four or more new wide releases will cram into multiplexes trying to get at their piece of a dwindling box office pie.

Nicolas Cage targets his second trip to the top spot this year with the action film "Next," rival actioner "The Condemned" counters with Stone Cold Steve Austin in the lead, horror fans get yet another creepy tale with "The Invisible," and Jamie Kennedy goes for some laughs with "Kickin’ It Old Skool."

Mostly garbage titles were programmed into this weekend’s menu since any studio with a decent film would not risk getting crushed on the second weekend by the webslinger sequel. Including these newest films, the first four months of 2007 boasts 64 wide releases hitting the marketplace, up slightly from last year’s 60 but up sharply from the 42 over the same period in 2005. With a mass quantity of weak April films, look for the North American box office to plunge to its lowest point of the year this weekend during what is essentially the calm before Sandman’s storm hits next Thursday night at midnight.

Following his Marvel Comics hit "Ghost Rider," Nicolas Cage once again plays the action hero card with the sci-fi thriller "Next." The PG-13 film finds the Oscar winner playing a man with the ability to see into the future who is called in to foil a terrorist plot before it happens. Directed by Lee Tamahori ("Die Another Day," "Along Came A Spider"), "Next" has the advantage of having the most screens and the most starpower of any new release this weekend. Plus with current films rotting away quickly (9 of the 16 holdovers in the Top 20 last weekend plunged by more than 55%), competition will not be too fierce. Paramount has been giving "Next" a decent amount of marketing, that is for a film being dumped into the final weekend of a month starting with the letter A. In almost any other time of year this would get clobbered, but given the current alternatives it will make for the only reasonable choice for many moviegoers. Hence, a number one opening by default and quite possibly the weakest one of the year. Crashing into over 2,500 theaters, "Next" could reach the top with around $13M.


Cage and Biel required an escort when exiting the "Next" premiere.

"The Condemned" offers a reality show idea not likely to be on any network’s fall schedule. In the weekend’s sole R-rated film, death row inmates duke it out to the death in order to avoid being executed, all while television cameras capture every brutal moment. World Wrestling Entertainment head Vince McMahon produces behind the scenes while former superstar grappler Steve Austin stars in front of the camera. Other WWE stars who headlined recent feature films include Kane in last May’s "See No Evil" ($4.6M debut) and John Cena in last fall’s "The Marine" ($7.1M bow). Both films averaged less than $4,000 on their opening weekends. Young men will make up the only audience segment for the new Lionsgate title and "Next" will provide some direct action competition. Still some hardcore wrestling fans will turn up to theaters since a movie ticket will be cheaper than ordering a pay-per-view event. But overall, prospects seem bleak. "The Condemned" will attack 2,310 theaters and may end up with $6M.


Steve Austin and some unfortunate soul in "The Condemned."

As if moviegoers don’t have enough scary films to choose from, Buena Vista offers up one more with the supernatural thriller "The Invisible." The PG-13 film follows a high school student whose spirit wanders after a brutal accident. Fright flicks have been flopping left and right recently and there is no reason to believe that this one will turn things around. The marketing volume has been stuck on low as this remake of a Swedish pic is more of a spring cleaning film tossed into the marketplace hoping to be forgotten soon. With no starpower, there will be almost nothing driving in traffic. "The Invisible" will appear in over 2,000 theaters this Friday, but might only collect roughly $5M.


One of them is "The Invisible."

Jamie Kennedy headlines the new comedy "Kickin’ It Old Skool" playing a 1980s breakdancer that falls into a coma and awakens two decades later to a much different world. Yari Film Group is targeting teenagers with this PG-13 pic which essentially offers the same laughs as the comedian’s 2003 film "Malibu’s Most Wanted." That modest hit bowed in late April to $12.6M from 2,503 theaters on its way to a $34.4M domestic final. "Skool" does not have a big studio marketing push behind it but it may grab the attention of some young dudes killing time before Peter Parker busts into theaters. DVD is where most people will find this one. Breaking into 1,600 theaters, "Kickin’ It Old Skool" could find itself with around $5M over three days.


Jamie Kennedy and Webster kick it "Old Skool."

Among holdovers, two-time champ "Disturbia" will find it difficult to hold onto its crown given the arrival of Nicolas Cage. But Paramount won’t care as it should still claim the number one film for the fifth consecutive weekend. A 40% decline would give the Shia LaBeouf pic about $8M for the frame and a healthy $51M after 17 days. The Anthony HopkinsRyan Gosling thriller "Fracture" has been well-received and competition is not too fierce so a 40% drop could be in order as well. That would leave New Line with $6.5M and a ten-day tally of $21M.

LAST YEAR: Three new flicks topped the charts led by the family comedy "RV" starring Robin Williams which opened at number one with $16.4M. The Sony hit enjoyed stellar legs and went on to collect $71.3M. Universal followed in second with the 9/11 thriller "United 93" which debuted in half as many theaters with $11.5M. The critically acclaimed pic went on to gross $31.5M. Buena Vista’s gymnastics film "Stick It" bowed in third with $10.8M on its way to $26.9M. Rounding out the top five were "Silent Hill" with $9.3M and "Scary Movie 4" with $7.8M. Also opening was the spelling drama "Akeelah and the Bee" with a weak $6M leading to a $18.8M final for Lionsgate and its promotional partner Starbucks.

Author: Gitesh Pandya, www.BoxOfficeGuru.com

Tag Cloud

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