Finally, what we’ve all been waiting for: A breakthrough at the box office after a summer that was down 15% with an estimated $3.8 billion.
New Line’s feature adaptation of Stephen King’s 1986 novel It is expected to rake in an opening in the $60 million range at 4,000 sites, while some tracking services believe the Andy Muschietti-directed pic has a shot at $70M. That lofty estimate may be due to the fact that It is really the only want-to-see film on tracking right now; it is why those estimates are so big. But even if the film lands in the $40M range (which we’re told it won’t — It will not crash), it’s a huge hit for New Line considering the film before P&A was made for a reported $35M. Any three-day take above $48.4M makes It the highest opening ever for the month of September (that’s the previous three-day record for the month, from Sony Animation’s Hotel Transylvania 2). Fans will be able to see It on Thursday starting at 7PM. Pic will also be playing on Imax screens stateside and select auditoriums overseas.
We hear everyone wants to see the King classic on the screen; that’s where this excitement is coming from, and there’s a sweet spot with the young-20s crowd. The premiere for It is tonight in Hollywood, and while there’s no Rotten Tomatoes score recorded yet, this crazed clown-meets-Stand by Me pic — which is the first of two installments focusing on the young kids who are haunted by Pennywise — is red hot on social. Following early screenings, RelishMix noticed a jump over the last week in #ItMovie hashtags, from 4,500 to 10K last week.
The second wide release for this weekend is Open Road’s Reese Witherspoon romantic comedy Home Again from Hallie Meyers-Shyer, daughter of Nancy Meyers and Charles Shyer. Pic follows an Angelino single mom whose life is upended when she allows three young guys to move in. Pic currently has a 22% RT score and looks to do around $10M-$12M per tracking at 2,800 theaters, which is under Witherspoon’s previous 2015 comedy Hot Pursuit ($13.9M). Budget on Home Again was a reported $15M.
Lionsgate’s No. 1 champ for three weekends, The Hitman’s Bodyguard, will slide about 60% for a fourth-weekend take of $4.2M. The action comedy has made $58M through the end of Labor Day.
We’ll have theater counts and Thursday preview times for you as they come.