Two new releases, Sony’s original animated feature The Emoji Movie and Focus Features’ Charlize Theron shoot-’em-up Atomic Blonde are expected to click in the $20M range this weekend, as well as Warner Bros. top holdover from last weekend Dunkirkleaving it unclear as to who will take No. 1.

Dunkirk
Warner Bros Pictures

Currently, it’s between Emoji Movie and Dunkirk. Emoji has the benefit of family matinees, while Dunkirk has been putting up solid weekday business with the Christopher Nolan-directed movie grossing $7.3M yesterday, +15% from Monday.  Given its appeal among older adults, Dunkirk looks to have long legs at the B.O. since that demographic takes its time to see a movie like this. Current domestic B.O. through five days is $64.3M.

Sony Pictures Animation

The Emoji Movie will make a grab at young kids starting at 5PM on Thursday in 2,000-plus theaters. That theater count moves to 4,074 by Friday. Emoji was made in Vancouver at Sony ImageWorks with Canadian rebates with a net production cost of $50M. With the humor stylings of T.J. Miller as the voice of Gene and a character named Poop, voiced by Patrick Stewart, Emoji is looking to draw a young teen audience that’s well above the handholder crowd.

Universal Pictures

Focus Features and Sierra/Infinity are looking to hook commercial moviegoers with Charlize Theron’s ultraviolent late-Cold War MI6 spy film Atomic Blonde at 3,300 theaters. Current range for this pic is $17M to the low $20Ms, but many believe it will notch on the high end of its tracking. The hope here is that this movie based on the Oni Press graphic novel by  Antony Johnston/Sam Hart might spur another Jason Bourne-like franchise for Universal.  We understand that big Uni had a hand in supporting this title marketing-wise. Should Atomic Blonde click past the opening of Insidious Chapter 3 ($22.7M), it will score the best opening ever for Focus Features. Previews tomorrow night at 7PM. Sierra Affinity financed this R-rated David Leitch-directed title for a reported $30M+. Atomic Blonde premiered at SXSW generating warm word of mouth and currently holds a 75% fresh Rotten Tomatoes rating. Focus toured an extensive bloody clip of Theron kicking guys up and down the stairs and showed it off at CinemaCon and last weekend at Comic-Con during the Oscar winner’s Entertainment Weekly “Women Who Kick Ass” panel. Theron produces via her production company, Denver & Delilah’s, A.J. Dix and Beth Kono, as well as Kelly McCormick, Eric Gitter and Peter Schwerin.

Detroit John Boyega
Annapurna Pictures

Also making a footprint this weekend is Annapurna which is releasing its first title, Oscar winner Kathryn Bigelow’s Detroitunder its new distribution ops led by former Weinstein Co. executive Erik Lomis. The movie, which goes wide next weekend, is getting a limited release in 10 markets –New York, Los Angeles,Chicago, Dallas, Washington D.C., Detroit, San Francisco, Houston, Atlanta and Baltimore–on 20 screens. The pic follows the 1967 12th Street riot in Motor City when a curfew was in effect and the Michigan National Guard patrolled the streets. Amid the chaos three young African American men were murdered at the Algiers Motel. Off 23 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, Detroit counts a current 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes. Previews start at 7PM tomorrow.