YOUR COMPLETE WEEKEND BOX OFFICE TRACKING, PREDICTIONS, & ANALYSIS (07.21.16)

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the box office-2

box office collage

Star Trek Beyond

$68 million

Ice Age: Collision Course

$34 million

The Secret Life of Pets

$25.4 million

Ghostbusters

$23 million

Lights Out

$11.5 million

Another prospective summer tentpole, Star Trek Beyond, bows this weekend after its world premiere at SDCC on Wednesday, though it remains to be seen if it can break out past other live action studio hopefuls that have had lackluster openings this year. Director Justin Lin is taking the conn from J.J. Abrams, who’s manned the last two films in the reboot series. Abrams stayed on as producer, but his departure from the helm made a lot of fans nervous, given Lin’s track record. Lin’s known for directing most of the Fast and Furious franchise, specifically the hopefully-forgotten third (Tokyo Drift) through Fast & Furious 6. And not that there aren’t stand-outs in there (Fast Five is a particular favorite), but they’re not exactly on par with Star Trek—capitalizing on amazing action sequences over things like character development, snappy dialogue, and general plot. Looks like there’s little to fear, though, as Star Trek Beyond’s been seeing generally positive reviews, hitting similar metrics to 2013’s Star Trek Into Darkness, though still not as good as the first 2009 revival.

star trek beyond

The real question is if Beyond can hit the same numbers as the 2009 and 2013 films at the ticket counters. Star Trek opened to $75.2 million, while Into Darkness dipped a bit and saw $70.2 million, as well as almost $30 million lower in its domestic total, though it blew away the first at the international box office. Beyond will surely do the same abroad, though Chinese audiences won’t get a chance to see it until September. Paramount’s been eying a $50-60 million start for Beyond, but good reviews and the raved-about premiere at Comic Con last night could tip it above the $60 million mark. It also can’t be denied that star Anton Yelchin’s (Chekhov himself) recent tragic death may have some effect, as we’ve seen in the past with The Dark Knight and Furious 7, both which saw at-the-time franchise high openings. We’re betting Beyond will open above initial speculation. It’s tracking better than Into Darkness, everyone’s mostly over the hotly contested initial teaser trailer by now, and the addition of new blood in the form of Idris Elba and Sofia Boutella can only help. So where it may not hit Star Trek’s highs, it’ll at least get close to matching Into Darkness this weekend.

Opening Weekend Current Gross Facebook Likes Tweets
Star Trek N/A N/A 3,722,910  73,799
Ice Age N/A N/A 18,298,825 34,339
Life of Pets $104.353 million $219.133 million 2,291,192 36,755
Ghostbusters $46.019 million $57.245 million 3,029,611 724,848
Lights Out N/A N/A 296,720 14,952

Latest in the massive franchise, Ice Age: Collision Course will take 2nd this weekend, the fifth in Fox’s animated series. Now, Ice Age movies have always had big openings, since the first with $46.3 million way back in 2002. The franchise saw a high with the second Ice Age: The Meltdown’s $68 million opening in 2006, and the third and fourth—Dawn of the Dinosaurs and Continental Drift—have posted openings of $41.7 and $46.6 million, respectively. That said, none of them have ever faced the kind of direct competition that Collision Course is. The Secret Life of Pets is, frankly, killing it at the box office right now, and Finding Dory is still holding strong. What’s more, not that it’ll necessarily matter to kids and families, but Collision Course is getting abominable reviews. While that doesn’t usually affect family films in their first weekend, it could steer parents towards safe bets Pets and Dory. Though Collision Course should be safe in 2nd from Pets’ reach, it won’t open nearly as high as its predecessors. Ice Age has seen its biggest successes internationally anyway, though, so Fox can’t be too worried. 

ice age collision course

Runaway success The Secret Life of Pets will keep bringing in the dough, already at $219 million after a surprise opening at $104.4 million two weeks ago. Pets has been strong in daily numbers, and is keeping pace with fellow Illumination Entertainment hit Minions, which opened $10 million ahead last summer. Using that as a comp, Pets will likely see another drop of around 50% in its third weekend, which leaves it with a very good shot at stealing 2nd place out from Ice Age: Collision Course’s, uh, snout. Ghostbusters will follow just behind in 3rd, after a solidly okay opening last weekend at $46 million, despite sight unseen misogyny-based unfavorable reviews from internet users before it was even released. The horror comedy reboot has done alright in daily numbers, though nothing as high as what Sony was hoping for in a summer flick. With such a crowded box office this weekend, it’ll be entirely up to the audience if it can manage to drop only 45%, similar to Paul Feig-Melissa McCarthy matchup Spy last year, or if it’ll see a harsher 50-55% dip. Around 50% will leave it with $23 million in its second weekend, solidly in 4th place.

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Newcomer Lights Out will claim 5th, likely debuting in the low teens—a great number considering it’s $5 million budget. Directed by David F. Sandberg, the horror film is based off Sandberg’s own short of the same name from 2013. This is Sandberg’s first feature length film, and he was also tapped to take over sequel Annabelle 2 for Blumhouse Productions, which will drop next year. Lights Out has been seeing moderate reviews so far, though the short is a favorite with horror fans, and the PG-13 rating will give it an edge with kids out of school looking for a thrill. Though it’s got producer James Wan of The Conjuring fame backing it, but as Wan’s not in the director’s chair, Lights Out should perform similarly to this year’s The Boy ($10.8 million opener) and The Forest ($12.7 million). If Lights surprises, it could even make a grab at a The Shallows-worthy $16 million.

     
Rotten Tomatoes IMDb Metacritic
Critics Users # of Ratings Stars # of Ratings  
Star Trek 89 N/A 98 8.0 2,604 71
Ice Age 11 N/A 64 5.9 4,288 36
Life of Pets 73 67 52,306 6.8 11,905 61
Ghostbusters 73 58 88,721 5.3 44,328 60
Lights Out 85 N/A 54 7.7 1,266 58

The Legend of Tarzan and Finding Dory will duke it out for 6th place, having been neck-and-neck for a few weeks now. Both will face direct competition from newcomers—Tarzan from Stark Trek and Dory from Ice Age—and it’s very up in the air who will swing (or swim) ahead. If both follow their trajectory and drop around 46%, they’ll be in spitting distance of one another yet again, with Tarzen pulling slightly ahead with $6.2 million, leaving Dory in 7th place with $6.1 million. Tarzan was a surprise success for Warner Bros., managing to break the $106 million mark after a smalltime opening of $38.5 million just four weekends ago. Disney’s Dory, of course, has been smashing animated records left and right with a current take of just under $450 million. Eighth place belongs to Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates, which should see around another 50% fall, leaving it with $3.8 million, closely followed by more family friendly comedy Central Intelligence in 9th. The spy comedy has earned $119 million so far, out-earning similarly themed Spy from last year, and it should pull in around another $3.4 million this weekend. Rounding out 10th place is The Purge: Election Year, which will fall behind Intelligence thanks to genre competition from Lights Out, as well the higher percentage drops its been posting since it’s July 4th weekend release. The Purge will fall another 50%, leaving it with around $3 million in its fourth weekend. The threequel thriller has so far grossed $73 million total, ahead of its predecessors.

(Sources: boxoffice.com, rottentomatoes.com, imdb.com, metacritic.com. Starred figures are estimates. Tweets represent figures for this week only. Figures represent numbers at time of writing, and may have changed. Tracking Board does not report Rotten Tomatoes user ratings for movies that have not yet seen wide release.)

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