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'Furious 7': How big at the box office?

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The box office—as well as fans of the Fast and Furious franchise—is about to have a good weekend: Furious 7 is arriving in theaters.

The previous film in the franchise, 2013’s Fast & Furious 6, opened with an impressive $97.4 million—but forecasts for the seventh predict this one will earn even more thanks to increasing buzz and, sadly, the 2013 death of star Paul Walker.

Furious 7 is the only wide release this weekend, so it has zero new competition to get in its way. Here’s how things might play out:

1. Furious 7 — $118 million

For awhile, Fast and Furious movies were seen as bad action movies—then they made a comeback of sorts in 2009 when the fourth Fast and Furious came out and reunited the original cast. Since then, the franchise hasn’t disappointed at the box office: The fourth debuted with $71 million, the fifth with $86.2 million, and the sixth with $97.4 million. Besides having well-liked characters and awe-inspiring action sequences, these movies have something else going for them: diversity. The Fast movies feature multiple minorities in lead roles, something most movies don’t. As EW’s Chris Lee wrote, “[the franchise’s] racial inclusiveness remains an outlier” even despite their obvious commercial success.

On a darker note, series star Paul Walker died in 2013. By that point, he’d already filmed most of his scenes for Furious 7 and because of that, still appears in the movie. This marks Walker’s final performance, so his fans will no doubt be interested in seeing him in a new film one last time.

It’s almost a given that Furious 7 will make more than the sixth film, but by how much is unclear. The fifth film made 21 percent more than the fourth, and this one might follow suit and make around 20 percent more than the previous one.

2. Home  — $29.7 million

Dreamworks’ Home premiered last weekend and outperformed with $52.1 million, not much lower than The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water’s $55.4 million debut. The two films had the same things going for them: Both were animated films with big names attached (Dreamworks for Home, the SpongeBob franchise to SpongeBob) and were brand new family-friendly movies introduced during a family-friendly movie drought. Because of these similarities, Home might follow SpongeBob and drop around 43 percent in its second weekend. 

3. Get Hard — $16.6 million

Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart’s latest might not be getting the best reviews—it currently has a 29 percent on Rotten Tomatoes—but it is the lone new comedy in a sea of dramas and action movies. That factor alone will continue to bring in audiences, and has already worked in its favor: Get Hard is Will Ferrell’s first film to debut with over $30 million since 2010’s The Other Guys. It’s likely to drop at least 50 percent this weekend though—partly as a result of those aforementioned reviews, partly because of negative word of mouth.

4. Cinderella — $11.5 million Cinderella‘s performance so far has been similar to Maleficent’s: Cinderella debuted with $67.9 million, Maleficent with $69.4 million. Cinderella made $17 million last weekend (its third), Maleficent made $18.5 million its third weekend. If the pattern continues, Cinderella‘s gross should drop a little over 30 percent this time around.

5. Insurgent — $8.6 million

The second film in the Divergent series isn’t exactly a crowd favorite, and its days in the top five are nearing their end. Its weekend gross dropped 58 percent between its first and second weekends and is likely to drop around 60 percent again.

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