Will April showers bring box office power to this week’s flock of new releases? From reigning champion The Boss Baby to specialty stunners like Colossal and Your Name, moviegoers have plenty to choose from at movie theaters big and small this weekend. Which film will rule them all? Find out in EW’s April 7-9 box office preview below.
1. The Boss Baby – $26 million
Defying industry expectations, audiences hired The Boss Baby with an accompanying salary of $50.2 million last weekend; with little competition in the way of animated titles (its closest adversary, Smurfs: The Lost Village, is the third installment in a waning big screen franchise), the film — which features the voices of Alec Baldwin, Steve Buscemi, and Lisa Kudrow — should reclaim the top spot on the domestic chart as it crawls closer to becoming 2017’s eighth film to cross the $100 million mark in North America alone.
2. Beauty and the Beast – $24 million
There’s no denying Beauty and the Beast had a fantastic run at the top of the box office. After tallying a whopping $174.8 million during its first three days in theaters, the film held steady with $90 million over its sophomore frame, finally relinquishing the peak position to The Boss Baby‘s stellar haul last week. All good things must come to an end, and Beauty and the Beast is cooling as it preps for a fourth go-round with audiences. Anticipate the Bill Condon-helmed production to add a further $20 million-$25 million to its growing $910.8 million worldwide total through Sunday.
3. Smurfs: The Lost Village – $15 million
Disappointing reviews aside, Smurfs: The Lost Village has a lot riding on its shoulders as it opens at 3,602 theaters. It’s the third big-screen feature in the beloved cartoon franchise’s history, and its predecessors have left behind two pairs of large shoes to fill. 2011’s The Smurfs bagged $563 million worldwide, with the follow-up amassing $347.5 million two years later. Its chances of reaching that deep into audience pockets are slim, as anticipation for the $60 million production feels remarkably low-key compared to the buzz generated by the prior iterations. Still, an opening in the $14 million-$17 million range would be promising and could spell success for the family title if worldwide grosses surge as well.
4. Going in Style – $8.5 million
Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, and Alan Arkin are giving mature audiences plenty to look forward to this weekend, as their crime comedy Going in Style enters approximately 3,000 theaters Friday. The Zach Braff-directed picture was written by Hidden Figures filmmaker Theodore Melfi, but don’t expect this film’s grosses to approach even half of what the best picture nominee made at the top of the year. The studio heist flick is pacing for an opening in the $7 million-$10 million range, but similar Freeman-starring titles — like 2013’s Last Vegas ($16.3 million opening) and 2007’s The Bucket List ($19.4 million opening) — have posted higher returns in the past. If older audiences turn out over time (as they tend to do), Going in Style should have no trouble making back its modest low-20s budget — and then some.
5. Ghost in the Shell – $7 million
Yes, Paramount’s Japanese animation adaptation didn’t open to the lofty numbers box office prognosticators had initially anticipated, but there’s still hope for the Scarlett Johansson-fronted blockbuster to do decent business overseas in the weeks ahead. Its domestic performance, however, will take a hit this weekend, as special effects-heavy actioners tend to be a bit more front-loaded than their fellow wide releases; 2006’s Ultraviolet dipped 60 percent from week one to week two, Johansson’s own Lucy tumbled 58.4 percent from its $43.9 million bow back in 2014, and this year’s Power Rangers reboot took a 64.8 percent hit just under seven days ago, so expect Ghost in the Shell to follow suit.
Outside the top five, Anne Hathaway leads the brilliant dark comedy/monster movie mashup Colossal to four theaters, reaping glowing critical reviews for the Nacho Vigalondo-directed gem in the process.
Additionally, look for the Mike Vogel/Erika Christensen faith-based drama The Case for Christ to post so-so numbers at around 1,175 sites, while Chris Evans’ Gifted should hit its target at 56 theaters between Friday and Sunday.
Elsewhere, one of Japan’s biggest movies of all time, the manga adaptation Your Name, finally makes a stateside entrance this weekend at just over 300 locations. The film, which was submitted for Oscar consideration in the animation category, has grossed an astonishing $328.7 million worldwide to date, and there’s bound to be a niche audience that will elevate that total even further as Your Name makes its North American debut.