Box Office Guru Preview: Carrey-Carell Ticket To Win Landslide Victory

Never Back Down, Doomsday also vie for box office.

by | March 13, 2008 | Comments

Three new releases roll into multiplexes across North America – one the size of an elephant, the others like specks of dust. Fox aims to deliver the largest opening weekend of the year so far with its animated family event film Horton Hears A Who which could very well triple the gross of its nearest competitor. Summit counters with its action title Never Back Down while Universal also targets young men with its horror flick Doomsday. Overall, the marketplace looks to bounce back and even stands a chance of beating year-ago figures for the first time in a month.

Almighty pals Jim Carrey and Steve Carell play nice this time in the first-ever animated feature version of a Dr. Seuss tale in Horton Hears A Who which goes into
saturation release on Friday. The G-rated pic tells of a playful elephant that discovers an entire city living on a tiny speck on a flower, but can’t convince others of its
existence. Fox has a mighty big hit on its hands for a number of reasons. The property is from an author that all generations are familiar with so parents and kids
alike can relate. The marketplace has very few viable options for children at the moment. Plus starpower from the two leads makes this a comedy juggernaut that
will allow the film to go beyond its core family audience and tap into business from teens and young adults too.

With one of the sharpest marketing departments around, Fox has the means to mine riches from this surefire spring blockbuster. Who else could propel lame
kidpics like Night at the Museum and Alvin and the Chipmunks to $200M+ megahit status over consecutive holiday seasons? The studio has used March as a
launching pad for its animated offerings from Blue Sky Studios allowing the films to steer clear of summer and holiday hits from Pixar and DreamWorks. In 2002,
Ice Age surprised everyone with its $46.3M debut. Three years later its Robots opened to $36M while the 2006 sequel Ice Age: The Meltdown bowed to a
mammoth $68M. Forgotten are the days of Titan A.E. Horton Hears A Who is destined to join its March brothers on the hit list.

The key to grosses skyrocketing lies in the interest of teens. Will they look at this as a Carrey-Carell dream team laugh-a-thon and line up? Chances are many will,
especially with no other major comedies doing substantial business. Appeal is broad with males and females of all ages opening their wallets. Sure it’s not as funny
as you’d hope given the two big C’s involved, but moviegoers will eat it up nonetheless. Plus with Good Friday and Easter helping the second weekend, long-term
prospects seem rosy too. Debuting ultrawide in over 3,900 theaters, Horton Hears A Who could collect about $50M over the Friday-to-Sunday period.

Seth Rogen and Jim Carrey (voices, that is) in Horton Hears a Who

Rookie distrib Summit Entertainment kicks into high gear with its fighting extravaganza Never Back Down which hopes to connect with the Mountain Dew crowd
looking for extreme action. The PG-13 flick stars relative unknowns Sean Faris and Amber Heard with Djimon Hounsou cast as the only star name. Action comes
from a high schooler’s discovery of the world of Mixed Martial Arts with the film playing as a hybrid of Fight Club and The Karate Kid. With little starpower and
a generic premise, Never will struggle to post strong box office numbers on opening weekend. Plus Doomsday will be stealing away some of the target audience
of young males. The two films really should not be opening head to head since neither is strong enough to stand on its own two feet in the first place. Summit gets
credit for at least trying with a marketing push that goes beyond what a pic with such little star wattage deserves. Never Back Down punches its way into 2,729
locations on Friday and could bag around $6M over three days.

Sean Faris in Never Back Down

Another killer virus film attacks the multiplexes, this time the British thriller Doomsday from Universal. The R-rated fright flick marks one of the studio’s few films to
not be screened for the press ahead of time and instead will rely on marketing to find its audience. Young men and genre aficionados should make up the primary
crowd here and they won’t be easy to reach. Besides the debut of Never Back Down, 10,000 BC is also in the marketplace playing to a good chunk of this
audience. Overall, the promotional push has not been too strong and awareness levels are not high, especially outside of the target demo. Infecting 1,935 theaters,
Doomsday looks to debut with about $5M this weekend before making a swift jump to that shiny disc.

The riotous revelry of Doomsday

After a sturdy debut, the prehistoric adventure 10,000 BC should suffer a sizable drop thanks to negative word-of-mouth. Direct competition from new releases
won’t be too much of a factor, but bad buzz will scare away prospective second weekend patrons. Look for a 55% decline which would give Warner Bros. about
$16M for the frame and $61M in ten days. The caveman pic will continue to dominate the overseas box office thanks to debuts this weekend in lucrative markets
like France, Italy, South Korea, and the United Kingdom.

Disney’s College Road Trip will take a direct hit from Horton this weekend as the family crowd will have a much bigger film to rally behind. A 40% drop would
put the Martin LawrenceRaven-Symone comedy at $8M for a ten-day cume of $25M.

Audiences have been receptive to the presidential assassination storyline of Vantage Point which could drop another 40% to $4.5M this weekend for a cume of
$58M for Sony. Lionsgate’s The Bank Job probably saw the bulk of Jason Statham fans rush out on opening weekend so a 45% fall would give the heist thriller
$3M and $11M in ten days.

LAST YEAR: New releases were no match for the top two films in North America which remained on top of the charts. The mammoth Spartan smash 300 tumbled 54% in its second weekend but still posted a hefty $32.9M sophomore tally. The Disney comedy Wild Hogs showed good legs dipping 31% and ranked second with $19.1M in its third lap. Faring best among the freshmen, Sandra Bullock‘s supernatural thriller Premonition opened in third with $17.6M for Sony on its way to a solid $47.9M. Rounding out the top five were fellow newcomers Dead Silence with a moderate $7.8M and Chris Rock‘s I Think I Love My Wife with a disappointing $5.7M. Final grosses reached $16.8M for the Universal pic and $12.6M for the Fox Searchlight laugher.

Author: Gitesh Pandya,

Tag Cloud

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