Weekend Box Office (August 22 - 24, 2014)
THIS WEEKEND As summer comes to an end, the films seemingly get smaller. This weekend sees three new releases again trying to divide and conquer and grab onto what business there is left of this non-record-breaking season. Chloe Grace Moretz headlines the teen romance If I Stay, based on another novel, aiming to bring in business from young females. Reviews have been mixed for the PG-13 pic. With a fairly popular brand and a fairly popular star, Warner Bros. could find itself with some decent cash during these dog days of summer. The target audience has nothing else major to be excited about right now. Opening in over 2,500 locations, If I Stay might take in around $16M this weekend.
The Weinstein Co. goes after the traditional summer audience of young men with its noir sequel Sin City: A Dame to Kill For. Rated R, the all-star pic follows its predecessor by more than nine years which may be a bit too late as interest has faded for many consumers. Young males in general have become less reliable to come out on opening weekend unless it's a huge brand. Sin City is a brand. But a less relevant one in today's world. Robert Rodriguez too has become less of a draw. Plus action fans have had tons of other options and sequels to spend on over the past four months so Dame is not really needed right now. Debuting in over 2,750 theaters, the new Sin City might open to around $14M.
Sony's latest offering targeting the faith-based crowd is the inspirational football drama For When the Game Stands Tall. The Passion of the Christ's Jim Caviezel stars and business is likely to be better in the heartland than in film industry markets of New York and Los Angeles. Overall interest does not seem to be at the same level as other successful faith-based hits from the spring. But the arrival of the NFL season does make this PG-rated film timely. Marching into 2,670 sites, For When the Game Stands Tall may open to about $11M.
After two weeks on top, the awesome twosome will still be in contention to lay claim to the number one and two slots. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles should erode a bit quicker so a 45% decline will lead to about $16M for the frame and an impressive new cume of $145M.
Meanwhile, Disney and Marvel will see Guardians of the Galaxy become the highest grossing movie of this summer with a weekend of roughly $16M as well after a 35% slide. Look for the domestic total to climb to $250M.
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LAST YEAR New films were no match for holdovers as The Butler and We're the Millers stayed on top again with $16.5M and $13M, respectively. No other film managed to break double digit millions. Sony's The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones opened in third with only $9.3M and an average below $3,000 with a 5-day of $14.1M. The British comedy The World's End bowed in fourth in half as many theaters with $8.8M for Focus. Finals reached $31.2M and $26M. Planes rounded out the top five with $8.6M.
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: August 21, 2014 at 11:30AM ET
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