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Box Office Preview: 'Surrogates' to challenge 'Cloudy' for top spot; 'Fame' looking at number three

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Surrogates-Bruce-movie_lIt’s a very different movie world that we live in today when a new Bruce Willis movie is fighting for the top spot against the second weekend of an animated pic. But such is the case this frame when the beloved Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs lobbies for the number one place its sophomore session, against the Bruce Willis sci-fi flick Surrogates. Fame is likely to lure in the tween girls and nab the third spot in the derby. Predictions are below.

1. Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs: $20 million

Audiences loved this movie last weekend and with little else for family moviegoers, more will be back this weekend for some flying 3-D meatballs. A 40% drop would put the film at $18 million but I think parents are going to boost those numbers even higher. It helps that the 3-D experience has been so well-received.

2. Surrogates: $18 million

How weird is it that a Bruce Willis movie is opening this weekend and the movie posters don’t feature the iconic action hero? Maybe the marketers couldn’t fathom sticking that odd blonde wig Willis is sporting in the film on giant posters. Whatever the reason, it will be interesting to see if Disney’s high-concept marketing approach to this film will work. Prognosticators have placed this opening anywhere from $22 million to $18 million and I’m sticking to the low end of the range. I’m just not convinced this movie, based on the graphic novel of the same name and directed by Jonathan Mostow (Terminator 3), is going to connect with audiences.

3. Fame: $14 million

What teenage girl didn’t love the 1980s television show, or for that matter the movie that preceded it? But we’re a long way away from the 1980s and while Debbie Allen means something to 30-somethings, she and her school of performing artists don’t resonate at all with MGM’s core audience for this remake: tweens. So it will be interesting to see if this remake can lure in the kids. Tracking suggests it will open in the low teens. We’ll have to see if that pans out. Today’s reality shows such as So You Think You Can Dance and America’s Got Talent may satiate the need to watch raw talent being discovered.

4. Pandorum: $6 million

This R-rated sci-fi film enters a very crowded horror marketplace. It may star Dennis Quaid and Ben Foster but the story of astronauts waking up in a deserted spacecraft has generated very little attention. It is opening in 2500 theaters and will be lucky to cross the $5 million mark.

5. The Informant!: $5 million

Reviews have been mixed on this Steven Soderbergh, Matt Damon collaboration. The film opened last frame to $10 million. I’d count on at least a 50% drop for this R-rated comedy.

Also opening:

I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell in 120 locations; Michael Moore’s Capitalism: A Love Story on four screens; Clive Owen’s The Boys Are Back on six screens and Paramount’s low-budget acquisition Paranormal Activity on 12 screens in college towns.

Photo Credit: Stephen Vaughan

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