Long Range Tracking: ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald,’ ‘Instant Family,’ & ‘Widows’

This week’s report breaks down the third weekend of November, currently slated to see the continuation of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter prequel series. We also offer up tentative projections for two original films opening the same weekend.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
Opening Weekend Range: $70 – 80 million

Potterheads will undoubtedly unite again for this anticipated sequel to 2016’s first prequel/spin-off film, which earned a respectable $234 million domestically and $814 million globally. The returning and expanded cast — now including Jude Law as a young Dumbledore and Johnny Depp as the titular antagonist famous in Potter lore — could provide significant hooks to keep many casual fans interested.

This new series of films is probably best compared to The Hobbit trilogy, although we expect this entry to remain relatively flat with the 2016 chapter’s $74.4 million debut since Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them wasn’t met with the same level of familiarity and anticipation as the first Hobbit film.

Early social media trends are outpacing those of the first Beasts film, while our Trailer Impact‘s long view metrics are very encouraging with an 85 percent Positive Interest score among those surveyed — representing one of the best wide release PI scores since summer’s Ant-Man and the Wasp.

Instant Family
Opening Weekend Range: $14 – 24 million

The trailer has only begun to penetrate the market enough to gauge early interest levels, but Paramount’s recent announcement that the film is scoring highly in test screenings (comparing it to Wonder and The Blind Side) is a factor in current projections. Stars Mark Wahlberg (Daddy’s Home) and Rose Byrne (Neighbors), plus the film’s family-centric premise, could be strong draws over the holiday season.

Widows
Opening Weekend Range: $15 – 25 million

Steve McQueen’s directorial follow-up to 13 Years a Slave promises a popcorn premise driven by a strong social message, a recipe which trailer reactions suggest could play very well.

The strong ensemble cast led by Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez, Elizabeth Debicki, Daniel Kaluuya, Colin Farrell, and Liam Neeson should entice adult audiences looking for more serious fare during the holiday corridor — an expectation backed up by excellent early reviews. If any award season buzz brews after release, staying power could have even more upside than we’re already expecting based on current trends.

8-Week Tracking

Release Date Title 3-Day Wide Opening % Chg from Last Week Domestic Total % Chg from Last Week Estimated Location Count Distributor
9/28/2018 Hell Fest $6,000,000 -25% $14,000,000 -24% 2,200 Lionsgate / CBS Films
9/28/2018 Little Women (2018) n/a n/a n/a Pinnacle Peak
9/28/2018 Night School (2018) $25,000,000 $78,000,000 2,800 Universal
9/28/2018 Smallfoot $22,000,000 $76,500,000 4,000 Warner Bros.
10/5/2018 A Star Is Born $44,000,000 $170,000,000 13% 3,700 Warner Bros.
10/5/2018 Venom (2018) $65,000,000 $135,000,000 4,000 Sony / Columbia
10/12/2018 Bad Times at the El Royale $12,000,000 -8% $37,000,000 -8% Fox
10/12/2018 First Man $20,000,000 -9% $100,000,000 -5% Universal
10/12/2018 Goosebumps: Haunted Halloween $17,000,000 21% $54,000,000 20% Sony / Columbia
10/19/2018 Halloween (2018) $60,000,000 $142,000,000 Universal
10/19/2018 The Hate U Give (Wide) n/a n/a Fox
10/19/2018 Serenity (2018) n/a n/a Aviron
10/26/2018 Hunter Killer $14,000,000 $41,000,000 Lionsgate / Summit
10/26/2018 Indivisible n/a n/a Pure Flix
10/26/2018 Johnny English Strikes Again $4,000,000 $8,750,000 Universal
11/2/2018 Bohemian Rhapsody $35,000,000 $125,000,000 Fox
11/2/2018 Tyler Perry’s Nobody’s Fool $15,000,000 $40,000,000 Paramount
11/2/2018 The Nutcracker and the Four Realms $20,000,000 $79,000,000 Disney
11/2/2018 The List n/a n/a Paramount
11/2/2018 Suspiria (Wide) n/a n/a Amazon Studios
11/9/2018 The Girl in the Spider’s Web $15,000,000 $45,000,000 Sony / Columbia
11/9/2018 Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch $79,000,000 $305,000,000 Universal
11/9/2018 Overlord $14,000,000 $42,000,000 Paramount
11/16/2018 Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald $75,000,000 NEW $222,000,000 NEW Warner Bros.
11/16/2018 Instant Family $18,000,000 NEW n/a NEW Paramount
11/16/2018 A Private War (Expansion) n/a n/a Aviron
11/16/2018 Widows $20,000,000 NEW $78,000,000 NEW Fox

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