Our look ahead to May’s key box office contenders continues this week with an early peak at a trio of releases slated to open on May 17, the penultimate weekend before the Memorial Day frame.
John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum
Opening Weekend Range: $30 – 40 million
- The franchise has proven incredibly popular with the second film’s strong $30.4 million debut and solid staying power up to $92 million domestically — all following the leggy run of 2014’s original film.
- A general absence of action films targeting adult males around this time of year — and a considerable three-week distance from Avengers: Endgame — should prove beneficial, especially with Memorial Day landing on its second weekend.
- Reactions to this film’s early trailers have been very enthusiastic, mirroring the positive sentiment earned by Chapter 2 two years ago.
- Franchises can often be susceptible to diminished returns as they go deeper into sequel territory, so pre-release reception will be important to watch out for.
A Dog’s Journey
Opening Weekend Range: $8 – 14 million
- Fans of W. Bruce Cameron’s novels and previous adaptations of his work — A Dog’s Purpose and A Dog’s Way Home — are expected to be the driving force here.
- Getting a one-week jump on Memorial Day should provide padding to staying power.
- The sort-of-franchise already experienced diminished returns with A Dog’s Way Home earlier this year. This film faces the additional challenge of landing on Detective Pikachu‘s second weekend, while then facing Aladdin one week later.
The Sun Is Also A Star
Opening Weekend Range: $9 – 14 million
- This adaptation of the popular young adult novel could benefit from its diverse cast and a relative lack of direct competition from date night movies.
- Comparable films like Five Feet Apart, Love, Simon, Everything, Everything, and Me Before You have recently achieved success while counter-programming blockbuster titles in the early-year market.
- Young adult dramas in general are well off their early 2010s peak at the box office.
(Click the chart below to open larger view in a new tab)
Alex Edghill contributed to this report
Forecasts subject to change as location counts are finalized before Friday.