Weekend Box Office (May 19 - 21, 2017)
THIS WEEKEND Audiences that want more gore and violence in their summer movies will rejoice as Ridley Scott returns with his latest, Alien: Covenant, which is a sequel to his 2012 film Prometheus and also bridges the gap to his original Alien classic. Fox's R-rated sci-fi actioner stars Michael Fassbender and should appeal to hard core fans of the franchise looking for a terror-in-space storyline.
The box office has been dominated recently by PG-13 action sequels that fall short of offering extreme violence and blood-soaked mayhem. That's where Covenant comes in as there is a hunger for that. Reviews have been good and it's been five years since the last film in the series so solid interest exists. The marketing push has been strong too. Attacking over 3,600 locations, Alien: Covenant may debut to around $32M.
The teen romance Everything, Everything targets young females with a movie adaptation of the best-selling young adult novel. The PG-13 film is likely to be a one-quadrant pic, however direct competition is minimal right now so it should carve out a respectable slice of the pie. Reviews are not likely to provide much of an assist for Warner Bros. so the studio needs to rely on the brand and a strong social media push to reach the Snapchat generation. Opening in over 2,800 theaters, Everything, Everything might take in around $10M.
Fox has a second franchise movie it is opening this weekend. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul goes after a completely different audience as the PG-rated comedy will appeal to the tween set and families. The first two films debuted in the $22-24M range while the threequel dropped to $14.6M. The brand's popularity has eroded so interest levels are low for this installment. Reviews are not too good and starpower is low. Landing in over 3,100 locations, Wimpy Kid might collect about $8M this weekend.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 will not give up the number one spot without a space fight. Disney and Marvel hope for a threepeat which is possible, but may end up settling for a close second place. Baby Groot and pals have been holding up well and a 45% decline would lead to a weekend gross of about $36M. That would put GOTG2 into the triple century club by Sunday with $303M.
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LAST YEAR From the app to the big screen, The Angry Birds Movie opened at number one with $38.2M for Sony on its way to $336M global. Captain America: Civil War fell to second after a two-week stint on top with $32.9M. New titles followed with the comedy sequel Neighbors 2 bowing to $21.8M and the action-comedy The Nice Guys taking fourth with just $11.2M. Final grosses reached $55.3M and $36.3M, respectively. The Jungle Book rounded out the top five with $10.9M in its sixth weekend.
This column is updated three times each week: Thursday (upcoming weekend's summary), Sunday (post-weekend analysis with estimates), and Monday night (actuals). Opinions expressed in this column are those solely of the author.
Last Updated: May 18, 2017 at 2:40PM ET
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