Weekend Box Office Forecast: The Marksman, Croods, & Wonder Woman 1984 to Continue Holding Down the January Fort

Photo Credits: Open Road Films ("The Marksman"); Universal Pictures ("The Croods: A New Age"); Warner Bros. ("Wonder Woman 1984")

After meeting expectations with a $3.1 million debut, Open Road’s The Marksman looks poised to again lead the domestic box office in its sophomore frame.

The Liam Neeson-driven thriller provided open cinemas their latest boost as the pandemic continues to ravage the country. Honest Thief, the actor’s previous thriller to open during the health crisis last October, eased 43 percent in its second weekend. That’s a fair comparison for Marksman, although coming off of MLK weekend could skew holdover models to some slight extent.

Countering the potential holiday drop-off is the reality that no new wide releases will enter the market this weekend. It’s a running theme this winter as studios try to weather the worst stages of the pandemic and audiences wait for vaccine distributions on a much wider scale. That’s something many are hopeful will improve in the near future as a new administration takes charge in Washington, D.C., though it will still take months for potential impact to be felt in a meaningful way.

As such, holdovers will continue to prop up the struggling box office throughout the remainder of January and much of February — at least. Family-driven and prestige titles, though, have notably generated modest week-to-week declines even as an estimated 57 percent of domestic theaters were closed as of the end of last weekend.

Behind The Marksman, for example, should be a close battle for second place this weekend. The Croods: A New Age hasn’t slipped more than 32 percent since its sophomore frame back in early December, despite being available as a PVOD release for the past month. An estimated $100,000 separated that flick and Wonder Woman 1984 at the box office during the MLK frame, so it’s conceivable for the Universal animated title to leapfrog past the DC sequel this weekend.

Meanwhile, News of the World and Promising Young Woman should continue to draw attention as word of mouth and award season heat benefit their theatrical runs and PVOD availability.

Debuting in limited release this weekend are IFC Film’s No Man’s Land in 255 theaters and Gravitas Ventures’ Our Friend in an undisclosed number of locations. Based on Showtimes Dashboard bookings, the latter could reach a projected 550 cinemas as it currently ranks ninth in total showings during the week ahead.

(Update: Gravitas has confirmed Our Friend will open in 543 locations this weekend.)

Weekend Forecast

Film Distributor 3-Day Weekend Forecast Projected Domestic Total through Sunday, January 24 Location Count % Change from Last Wknd
The Marksman Open Road Films / Briarcliff Entertainment $2,000,000 $6,100,000 2,018 -36%
The Croods: A New Age Universal Pictures $1,700,000 $41,750,000 1,876 -15%
Wonder Woman 1984 Warner Bros. Studios $1,600,000 $37,900,000 n/a -21%
News of the World Universal Pictures $830,000 $9,675,000 1,874 -17%
Monster Hunter Sony / Columbia $725,000 $10,100,000 1,661 -22%
Promising Young Woman Focus Features $375,000 $4,000,000 1,236 -16%
Fatale Lionsgate $370,000 $5,250,000 1,130 -21%
The War with Grandpa 101 Studios $145,000 $19,475,000 507 -10%
Pinocchio (2020) Roadside Attractions $120,000 $1,530,000 602 -23%
The Emperor’s New Groove (2020 Re-Issue) Walt Disney Pictures $110,000 $350,000 635 -31%

All forecasts subject to change before the first confirmation of weekend estimates from studios or alternative sources.

Forecasts above do not necessarily represent the top ten, but rather films with the widest theatrical footprint based on studio confirmations entering the weekend.

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Photo Credits: Open Road Films ("The Marksman"); Universal Pictures ("The Croods: A New Age"); Warner Bros. ("Wonder Woman 1984")