Once Christmas day arrives, moviegoing explodes until New Year’s Day, and without a big 10-quad pic like Star Wars in the marketplace, projections will be tempered this season.

As such, Sony’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is the first big movie to hit the marquee following Thanksgiving, and should the film –which we hear is great– comes up short in its opening weekend, it will likely find an audience in the post-season holiday.

We’re hearing a $30M+ start is reasonable for this movie, but it could jump up as high as $40M. The pic’s official trailer from five months ago has clocked 29M views. At this point the pic is strong with males younger and older (25) and young females under 25. As a comp, as animated superhero movies based off comic books typically are released directly into the home entertainment market (i.e. DC pics), Spider-Verse‘s opening would be higher than Warner Bros./Miramax’s toon revival of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, TMNT which bowed to $24.2M.

Sony announced last night that Spider-Verse is getting a China release date of Dec. 21 which will bode well for its overseas haul. Spider-Man sister property Venom has been taking off in the Middle Kingdom minting $205.3M, which is 36% of its $569.4M foreign gross.

As Hollywood embraces diversity on the big screen, so does this Spider-ManThe hero that he becomes in this movie is informed by the Puerto Rican-African American culture and adolescent point of view of protagonist Miles Morales (played by Shameik Moore). Spider-Verse isn’t just straight CGI, nor hand-drawn but a unique form onto itself. After being rendered on the computer, every single frame of the film was finalized by hand.

Phil Lord scripted with Rodney Rothman, and produced alongside Christopher Miller. Spider-Verse is directed by Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey and Rothman.

Warner Bros Pictures

Given adults’ to-do list before Christmas, Warner Bros.’ The Mule may be one of those pics that gets pushed until after the holiday. That said, a $15M-$17M is possible. If the Clint Eastwood-directed movie, which also stars him, truly dynamites adults out, it could see $20M, but a $15M beginning is reasonable. Film is tracking best with older males and females over 25.

Universal’s sci-fi/fantasy Mortal Engines based on the Philip Reeve book and produced by Peter Jackson, and adapted/produced by his wife Fran Walsh is looking low in the $12M-$15M range. It is currently bes with younger males under 25.

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