Box Office Guru Preview: Pineapple Hopes To Defeat Knight

Also: Sisterhood hopes to beat Mamma Mia!

by | August 7, 2008 | Comments

Studios got off to an early start by launching this week’s two new films, the stoner comedy Pineapple Express and the girlpower saga The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2, on Wednesday. The midweek launches allow the movies to tap into available students on summer vacation, generate some word-of-mouth going into the all-important weekend period, and get a headstart on the Olympics in Beijing which kick off with the tape-delayed broadcast of the Opening Ceremonies on Friday night. Audience overlap will be close to zero so each pic will have space to connect with its target audience which will be very much divided by gender lines. Meanwhile, a little film called The Dark Knight hopes to score its fourth consecutive number one finish.

The Judd Apatow factory has been churning out content like crazy in the last two years. Maybe too much content. But one of its more promising titles is Pineapple Express which teams factory regular Seth Rogen with James Franco as two potheads on the run after one witnesses a murder committed by a drug lord and a corrupt cop. The R-rated comedy will play as late-summer relief from the endless string of action and special effects flicks dominating multiplexes over the last three months. Pineapple also is an action film to some extent, but is aimed at the older teens and young adults that drove Superbad to a $33.1M number one bow this month a year ago. Stoner comedies have never been known to score huge openings, but this one should fly high thanks to solid buzz, the Apatow brand, and Franco’s breakthrough performance as a character unlike any he’s played before.

Young men will make up the core audience but some female interest is there too. Twentysomethings should come out in solid numbers but the 30+ crowd may not be as big as for past R-rated Apatow projects like The 40-Year-Old Virgin and Knocked Up. Sony’s marketing push has been terrific and just as it did with Superbad last summer, the studio pushed its red-band trailer early to get the film on the radar. Competition from Batman will be a factor as that one has become a pop culture event whereas many Pineapple fans may choose to be lazy and wait for the DVD to pop into the mailbox three months from now to avoid leaving the house. But for the under-25 set, this film does have a substantial amount of hype right now and if word-of-mouth from Wednesday and Thursday is good, the recommendations could help encourage undecided voters to take a trip on the Express over the weekend. Rolling into 3,072 locations, Pineapple Express might gross $28M this weekend and $42M over five days.

Seth Rogen and James Franco in Pineapple Express.

Warner Bros. aims in a different direction this weekend going younger and much more female with its friendship sequel The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2. The followup to the 2005 pic reunites all four stars in a new saga as the characters head off to college. The first Sisterhood also saw a midweek Wednesday bow although it was in early June when most of the under-17 crowd was still in school. Its fifth-place launch brought in $9.8M over the weekend and $13.6M over five days which was decent, but not too impressive. The film ended up with a respectable $39M and found a larger audience on video and TV. Also helping to justify a sequel was the rising starpower of the four young actresses from their respective television careers led by America Ferrera headlining ABC’s Ugly Betty. Amber Tamblyn, Alexis Bledel, and Blake Lively also star in the PG-13 film.

The new installment should attract most of the folks who came out on opening weekend for the first round. But the numbers will be even bigger thanks to the growth of the fan base for the property, the increased drawing power of the cast, and of course the 10% bump in ticket prices since the last time Batman hit screens. Plus with guy flicks filling up the top ten competition will be light. An underserved crowd of young females done singing along to ABBA will have some new entertainment to pass the time with during the lazy days of August. Now playing in 2,667 locations, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 could open to about $16M over the weekend and $23M over five days.

The sisters of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2.

With two new foes entering the ring, The Dark Knight will face yet another challenge but hopes to keep its grip on the box office crown for a fourth consecutive weekend. It will need a very strong hold on its part and for Pineapple Express to pull much of its audience out upfront on Wednesday and Thursday. The sixth Batman movie has been shattering every record in its path and should have $416M in the bank when it starts the weekend. Direct competition from the new releases should not be too potent so a 40% decline could result. That would give the Caped Crusader about $25.5M and boost the cume to a towering $441M after just 24 days. The Dark Knight would then climb up to number three on the all-time blockbusters list sitting right behind Titanic and Star Wars (including all re-releases). Ticket prices varied greatly in the years these films played so their admissions totals would still be far ahead.

The good news for The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor is that it doesn’t have a true action movie opening against its second weekend. But the downside is that buzz is not very good and as a threequel, it probably drew the bulk of fans upfront in the first week. Universal is seeing sensational numbers overseas, especially in Asia, but stateside a steep fall is set to occur. The Universal release could tumble by 60% to about $16.5M and raise its ten-day sum to $72M.

Step Brothers will face direct competition from Pineapple for young adults looking for raunchy R-rated humor. A 45% decline could result giving Sony around $9M boosting the cume to $82M. Universal’s feel-good hit Mamma Mia! should post another low drop although Pants will steal away some of its female support base. Look for a 30% dip to roughly $9M which would up the total to $105M allowing the Meryl Streep musical to join the century club.

LAST YEAR: The buddy comedy Rush Hour 3 opened at number one becoming the sixth and final threequel of the summer to debut in the top spot. New Line went on to gross $140.1M domestically and $255M worldwide with the Chris TuckerJackie Chan flick. Dropping a notch to second was The Bourne Ultimatum with $32.9M in its sophomore session. The Simpsons Movie followed with a third weekend take of $11.3M. The fantasy flop Stardust bowed poorly in fourth with only $9.2M for Paramount on its way to just $38.6M. The leggy musical Hairspray rounded out the top five with $6.4M for a dip of just 31%. Launching with weak results in tenth place was the family sequel Daddy Day Camp with a pitiful $3.4M leading to a $13.2M final.

Author: Gitesh Pandya,

Tag Cloud

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