The Simpsons Movie is still looking at a great opening this weekend with wide distribution domestically (3,922 theaters) and omnipresent marketing. My box office gurus are predicting at least a $50 million and maybe even a $60 million opening — even though 20th Century Fox internally projects only high $30s. Once again, the studios keep playing this game of lowered expectations. The story here is that Fox is claiming the toon cost just $75 million to make thanks to so much of the animation work being done in South Korea. That’s a bargain! As for Warner’s No Reservations (2,425 venues), my box office analysts predict an opening of only $10 mil. This is such a predictable chick flick with one of the worst trailers, not to mention miscast with Catherine Zeta Jones, that it defies explanation. Some media have asked me whether Lindsay Lohan’s troubles will help her Sony horror flick I Know Who Killed Me (1,320 runs). Nah, it’ll be stillborn at the box office making only $3 mil. And The Weinstein Co’s MGM-distributed comedy Who’s Your Caddy? should eke out only $2.5 mil.
Next weekend (August 3rd), my box office gurus are starting raise their estimates for The Bourne Ultimatum which is getting rave reviews. The Matt Damon quintessential action pic looks more like “mid-$50s at least” now instead of just $40+ mil. One of the film’s producers is trying to sucker-bet me that it’ll do $60+ mil. As for Lionsgate’s Bratz, it looks like a flop.
Sony’s summer sleeper Superbad (August 17th) from the Judd Apatow comedy wheel just came on tracking. “With pretty low awarness but high definite interest from the ones who are aware,” I’m told.
New Line’s Rush Hour 3 (August 10th) is still huge.
Warner’s The Invasion (August 17th) came on “soft in all areas”.