Box office preview: Logan to slash competition
Hugh Jackman looks to bow out of the X-Men franchise on a high note, as his latest Wolverine flick, Logan, storms 4,071 theaters this Friday as the widest R-rated release in history. The $97 million production faces no competition, as fellow wide releases Before I Fall and The Shack are after more specific demographics, while Logan — despite its harsh rating — is relying on the broad makeup of its reliable, pre-established Marvel Comics fan base to fuel its box office fire in the coming days.
Here’s what the March 3-5 box office chart could look like on Sunday.
1. Logan – $70 million
James Mangold takes another stab at the superhero genre here, a move that could pay off as Logan, the third film in the Wolverine spin-off series, is currently tracking as the No. 1 X-Men title in history in terms of Fandango presales. That statistic alone points to an opening in the $80-$100 million range, though presale data isn’t the sturdiest indicator of a film’s box office potential. Industry projections peg the film for a $60-70 million debut, which feels a lot safer considering the previous installment, The Wolverine, launched with $53 million in 2013. Still, Logan has garnered far better reviews than its predecessor (94 percent vs. 69 percent on Rotten Tomatoes), but fan anticipation can rarely be measured across critic scores, and audiences will likely flock to bid the beloved character farewell regardless of its reception.
2. Get Out – $21 million
After debuting to a whopping $33.4 million across its opening weekend, Jordan Peele’s directorial debut looks to defy expectations again over its sophomore frame. Horror films are typically front-loaded, though Get Out has scored some of the best audience and critical notices of the year. When it comes to being the buzziest flick on the block, genre statistics mean little, so expect Get Out to post a solid number between $19-22 million this weekend.
3. The Shack – $12 million
Plenty of A-list stars have found success in faith-based films as of late, including Jennifer Garner, whose Miracles From Heaven made $61.7 million domestically after it opened in March 2016. Octavia Spencer and Sam Worthington aim for similar heights with The Shack, which debuts at approximately 2,800 locations in the U.S. and Canada this weekend. Despite negative critical reviews, the studio’s targeted marketing (including outreach to over 4,000 religious community members, a national partnership with the Cru Christian Ministry, a 30-minute special on the Christian Broadcasting Network, word-of-mouth screenings for key demographics, and stunted opening night screenings hosted by radio personality Delilah) should be enough to push the film into the low teens this weekend.
4. The LEGO Batman Movie – $10 million
Warner Bros. Animation’s third major release has thus far underperformed when compared to its forerunner, 2014’s The LEGO Movie, which made $469 million globally across its theatrical run. Currently, LEGO Batman‘s worldwide number sits just under half of that tally, but it should crack the $300 million mark by its close date. After leading the North American chart for two straight weeks earlier this year, LEGO Batman relinquished its position to Get Out last weekend, and should dip a few more rungs in the days ahead. Look for LEGO Batman to pull in another $10-12 million as the most prominent family film on the market.
5. John Wick: Chapter 2 – $5 million
Heading into its fourth weekend in wide release, the action sequel John Wick: Chapter 2 has nearly doubled the domestic grosses of its predecessor, with an additional $50 million pouring in from international audiences. At $128 million worldwide and counting, John Wick: Chapter 2 has paved the way for a third film with dollar signs and stellar critical reviews. Look for the film to add another $4-5 million to its growing total this weekend.
Elsewhere, Open Road’s YA adaptation Before I Fall opens at 2,346 theaters and is pacing to take around $3-5 million over the three-day frame. The Anna Kendrick rom-com Table 19 also enters limited release on Friday, as does Hollywood legend Shirley MacLaine’s latest theatrical venture, The Last Word, which also stars Amanda Seyfried.