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Box-office preview: 'Hot Pursuit' won't keep pace with 'Age of Ultron'

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Jay Maidment/Marvel

Sure, Avengers: Age of Ultron may not have opened with the same record-breaking numbers as the first Avengers, but it debuted with $191 million. Sandwiched between The Avengers and Iron Man 3, it’s the second biggest opening of all time, giving Marvel some serious bragging rights. Now, the big question is how long it can keep up that momentum.

Internationally, Age of Ultron has been the No. 1 release in every country where it’s debuted, bringing in $677.1 million worldwide. It still hasn’t premiered in two important markets: China and Japan.

While Ultron isn’t expected to break any records as it enters its second week, it should still stay at the top of the charts. Here are our box office predictions for Mother’s Day weekend.

1. Avengers: Age of Ultron — $86 million

The first Avengers brought in a whopping $103 million in its second weekend, but Age of Ultron isn’t expected to compete with that. The presale numbers for Age of Ultron may have been higher, and it did beat the first film’s Friday opening gross, but Ultron ticket sales have declined pretty steadily since opening night. The last five Marvel films each dropped about 55 percent in their second week, and if Age of Ultron follows that trend, it’ll make about $86 million.

2. Hot Pursuit  — $18 million

This Reese Witherspoon-Sofia Vergara road-comedy won’t pose much of a challenge to Age of Ultron, but it should still pull some relatively solid numbers as a female-fronted comedy opening Mother’s Day weekend. The reviews, unfortunately, haven’t been as positive as other female buddy-cop comedies, like The Heat, and Witherspoon-Vergara don’t have the same comedy credibility at the box office as Bullock-McCarthy. (Plus, Witherspoon hasn’t brought in big numbers in years, and while Vergara has had plenty of TV success, she hasn’t helmed a major box-office hit yet.) Predictions have Hot Pursuit clocking in around $18 million.

3. The Age of Adaline — $4.7 million

The other “Age Of” movie was neck in neck with Furious 7 last weekend, but it’s only entering its third week, and it’s one of the only romantic dramas in theaters this Mother’s Day weekend. Tracking services predict it’ll drop about 30 percent, and if it does, it’ll bring in about $4.7 million.

4. Furious 7 — $3.3 million

Even though last weekend’s initial Sunday estimates put Furious 7 behind The Age of Adaline, actual numbers pushed it ahead with $6.6 million. Expect it to finally fall to Adaline as it enters its sixth week in theaters. The last three films in the Furious series each fell about 50 percent in their sixth weeks, and if Furious 7 does the same, it’ll register about $3.3 million.

5. Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 — $2.9 million

As one of the only PG-rated comedies in theaters right now, Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 may hang on to a spot in the top five for another week. But Paul Blart 2’s box-office numbers are falling faster than the first movie’s, and Hot Pursuit is debuting this weekend as another cop comedy. Paul Blart is expected to slip about 50 percent to $2.9 million.

Meanwhile, The D Train, the new Jack Black/James Marsden comedy from IFC, will also open this weekend, but it isn’t expected to crack the top five since it’s playing in barely 1,000 theaters. Age of Ultron will have to wait until next weekend for any serious competition, when Mad Max: Fury Road and Pitch Perfect 2 open.

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