Long Range Box Office Tracking: Will No Time to Die Close Out Daniel Craig’s James Bond Era with a Bang?

Photo Credit: Nicola Dove© 2020 DANJAQ, LLC AND MGM. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

After nearly fourteen years as the iconic James Bond, the final installment in Daniel Craig’s era as 007 is shaping up to deliver another potential blockbuster with its early April global release.

No Time to Die
Domestic Opening Weekend Range: $75 – 100 million

PROS:

  • Following the release of its first trailer, NTTD has generated strong online sentiment and engagement across major social media outlets relative to other adult-targeted franchises. Early metrics are comparable-to-higher than those of Mission: Impossible – Fallout and Hobbs & Shaw, while not far off from The Fate of the Furious.

  • On top of the allure of this being Craig’s presumed finale, fans are particularly enthusiastic about the film’s expansive cast — which includes recent Oscar-winner Rami Malek as the mysterious villain, Lashana Lynch and Ana de Armas in newcomer roles, and the return of Naomie Harris, Ben Whishaw, Jeffrey Wright, Ralph Fiennes, and Christoph Waltz as their memoriable characters from previous Craig-led films.

  • Although the Bond franchise has typically adhered to episodic tales over the course of its 24-going-on-25 films, the promise of this film wrapping up the character’s arc — which began with Craig’s Casino Royale — might help it benefit from the finale factor that has provided other franchises with box office boosts..

  • Craig’s turn as the character has proven to be among the most popular since Sean Connery’s original big screen iteration. In fact, his 14-year tenure officially surpasses Roger Moore’s previous 12-year run (though Moore still holds the title of most “official” Bond films with seven).

  • Generally speaking, Craig’s Casino Royale and Skyfall are widely hailed as among the best in the Bond canon — a level of goodwill not to be underestimated going into his (likely) final appearance. On a similar note, this more mature era of 007 storytelling has seen the franchise elevate itself back into blockbuster tiers at the box office, with Skyfall and Spectre combining to earn nearly $2 billion globally between them.

  • The addition of Phoebe Waller-Bridge (creator of Fleabag and Killing Eve) in the writing process has generated significant buzz among fan circles, suggesting the film could gain additional appeal among female audiences with her contributions to the story.

  • The four-and-a-half-year lapse since the previous Bond film (Spectre) has likely given the brand enough time to breath and allow anticipation among general audiences to brew again — not unlike the four-year gap between 2008’s Quantum of Solace and 2012’s Skyfall.

  • Opening three weeks after A Quiet Place Part II and three weeks before Black Widow, there isn’t much competition on the late spring / early summer slate — leaving a corridor for lengthy premium screen allocation and strong legs if word of mouth is similar to that of Casino Royale and Skyfall. Optimistically, it’s possible the film could challenge Skyfall‘s $1 billion+ global box office haul if everything fires on all cylinders.

  • As any great Bond film requires, the attachment of Billie Eilish to the film’s title song should generate major pop culture synergy given her rise to fame over the past year, not to mention appeal to a younger-than-usual demographic for the franchise. The title track, after less than 24 hours of release, is already charting high on various music streaming services and has reached #1 in various countries around the globe. (And, not for nothing, the franchise is already hot off two Oscar-winning tracks from Adele (Skyfall) and Sam Smith with Spectre‘s “The Writing’s on the Wall.”)

  • Not that his flagship franchise needs the help necessarily, but Knives Out has only elevated the popularity of Craig thanks to his memorable and buzzy role as Detective Benoit Blanc.

CONS:

  • The aforementioned Spectre received mixed reviews and audience reactions, proving to have shorter box office staying power than Skyfall and Royale (though it handily out-grossed the latter overall). With some connection (however minimal) to Spectre‘s storyline seemingly present in NTTD‘s first trailer (via the return of Waltz and Léa Seydoux’s characters), it remains to be seen whether this film can stand on its own and/or overcome that film’s somewhat divided reactions.

  • On a related note, key marketing spots haven’t yet highlighted the “Craig’s final movie” aspect of the film yet — which could limit said potential finale effect if not implemented widely and effectively.

  • With the switch in distribution rights from Sony on previous films to MGM with this title (Universal internationally), there’s something of a question mark around what to expect from the heart of the film’s primary ad push this spring. To that end, final marketing in the pre-release window — as well as critical reception — will be key to the film’s opening and long-term prospects.

Additional Updates

  • The Hunt has been added to the chart below following Universal’s confirmation it will now release on March 13. The Blumhouse thriller had been previously been delayed from its late 2019 release following tragic real-world events with parallels to the film’s plot. With its release now between The Invisible Man and A Quiet Place Part II, we’re cautious on its prospects, though it won’t need to break out significantly with a modest $15 million budget.

Estimated Location Counts

  • Brahms: The Boy 2 (2,100 studio estimate)
  • Call of the Wild (3,400 studio estimate)
  • The Invisible Man (3,450)

8-Week Tracking and Forecasts

Release Date Title 3-Day (FSS) Opening Tracking Range 3-Day (FSS) Opening Forecast % Chg from Last Week Domestic Total Range Domestic Total Forecast % Chg from Last Week Distributor
2/21/2020 Brahms: The Boy 2 $6,000,000 – $11,000,000 $7,000,000 -13% $13,000,000 – $25,000,000 $15,500,000 -13% STX
2/21/2020 Call of the Wild $10,000,000 – $15,000,000 $13,000,000   $35,000,000 – $50,000,000 $44,000,000   20th Century Studios
2/28/2020 The Invisible Man $20,000,000 – $40,000,000 $30,000,000   $60,000,000 – $105,000,000 $80,000,000   Universal
3/6/2020 Onward $50,000,000 – $70,000,000 $60,000,000   $175,000,000 – $250,000,000 $227,000,000   Disney / Pixar
3/6/2020 The Way Back $8,000,000 – $13,000,000 $10,000,000 -23% $25,000,000 – $45,000,000 $33,500,000 -23% Warner Bros.
3/13/2020 Bloodshot $10,000,000 – $15,000,000 $12,000,000 -14% $25,000,000 – $38,000,000 $30,000,000 -17% Sony / Columbia
3/13/2020 The Hunt $8,000,000 – $13,000,000 $10,500,000 NEW $20,000,000 – $33,000,000 $25,000,000 NEW Universal
3/13/2020 I Still Believe $13,000,000 – $18,000,000 $14,500,000   $44,000,000 – $59,000,000 $49,000,000   Lionsgate
3/13/2020 My Spy $8,000,000 – $13,000,000 $9,000,000 -10% $25,000,000 – $45,000,000 $32,400,000 -10% STX
3/20/2020 A Quiet Place Part II $60,000,000 – $80,000,000 $72,000,000   $140,000,000 – $190,000,000 $168,000,000   Paramount
3/27/2020 Mulan $40,000,000 – $60,000,000 $46,000,000   $115,000,000 – $170,000,000 $132,000,000   Disney
4/3/2020 The Lovebirds $10,000,000 – $15,000,000 $12,000,000   $35,000,000 – $50,000,000 $42,000,000   Paramount
4/3/2020 The New Mutants $15,000,000 – $25,000,000 $17,000,000   $35,000,000 – $55,000,000 $37,000,000   20th Century Studios
4/3/2020 Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway $14,000,000 – $19,000,000 $18,500,000   $65,000,000 – $85,000,000 $71,000,000   Sony / Columbia
4/10/2020 No Time to Die $75,000,000 – $100,000,000 $88,000,000 NEW $200,000,000 – $290,000,000 $269,000,000 NEW MGM

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