Accountants may tally up large numbers, but will a film of the same name tally up large numbers at the box office? That’s the question this Friday as Warner Bros. releases their action crime drama The Accountant. Other new releases include Universal’s stand-up comedy concert film Kevin Hart: What Now? and Open Road Films’ superhero movie Max Steel.
The Accountant (Warner Bros.)
- Starring Ben Affleck, Anna Kendrick, and recent Oscar Best Supporting Actor winner J.K. Simmons, the film packs a great cast. Affleck and Kendrick in particular have had bona fide box office hits the past few years with Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice earlier this year, 2014’s Gone Girl, and the Pitch Perfect series.
- The R-rated drama thriller looked early on like it could face tough competition from fellow R-rated adult dramas The Girl on the Train and The Birth of a Nation, but both titles underwhelmed upon their box office debuts last weekend. Those results could potentially clear competition from The Accountant‘s path.
- Buzz has been relatively muted, with the most-viewed YouTube trailer receiving 2.5 million views.
- Affleck — who’s really the main draw here as the title character, with Kendrick and Simmons clearly in supporting roles — has had mixed results at the box office lately. Runner Runner tanked with $19.3 million, and some analysts even consider Batman v. Superman to have under-performed despite its huge gross, considering its sky-high expectations.
Kevin Hart: What Now? (Universal)
- Hart’s first stand-up concert film, 2011’s Laugh at My Pain, opened with $1.9 million and earned $7.7 million total. His next entry in the genre, 2013’s Let Me Explain, came in even higher, debuting to $10.0 million en route to $32.2 million total. Since then, he’s only become more of a box office star, with $125+ million box office hits like Central Intelligence and Ride Along.
- The film shows a taping of Hart’s 2015 sold-out comedy show at the Philadelphia football stadium where the Philadelphia Eagles play. The nationwide comedy tour with a 90-city itinerary broke records for ticket sales and revenue, with $35 million in pre-sales alone.
- The most-viewed trailer doesn’t even have a million views on YouTube — not a good sign at all.
- The stand-up comedy genre, which used to have big hits with the likes of Richard Pryor and others, has withered away in recent years. In fact, by far the highest-grossing film of the genre in the past decade was Hart’s previous release Let Me Explain. Was that film the exception to the modern-day rule, or will this new release revert back to the law of averages?
Max Steel (Open Road Films)
- Although the first trailer dropped less than two months before theatrical release, an unusually short window in which to drum up buzz, the video has already attained more than 18 million YouTube views. That’s more than for many films for which the trailer has been out for months longer.
- The story of a 16-year-old who fuses bodies with an alien to gain superpowers is based on a toy series and animated television show. Transformers, The LEGO Movie, and Angry Birds in recent years have all demonstrated that toy and game adaptations can become box office hits.
- The Hasbro action figure on which the film is based was also adapted into a rebooted animated television series that aired 2013-14, following the original television series which ran from 2000-02. The rebooted series wasn’t a huge hit, which doesn’t bode particularly well for this live-action film adaptation.
- Filming occurred in the first half of 2014, about two and a half years ago, and the finished product was stuck in limbo for a while. The first trailer wasn’t even released until August 31, compared to most movies which give themselves several months to build up anticipation.
- Superhero action films are released in summer (as everyone knows) and in November/December — such as this November’s new Marvel release Doctor Strange or next November’s new Thor and Justice League installments — but October has generally been something of a “no man’s land” for the genre.
Check out the official Boxoffice Pro weekend forecast in the table below:
|Title||Distributor||Weekend||Domestic Total through
Sunday, October 16
|The Accountant||Warner Bros.||$16,000,000||$16,000,000|
|Kevin Hart: What Now?||Universal||$13,500,000||$13,500,000|
|The Girl on the Train (2016)||Universal||$13,300,000||$47,840,000|
|Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children||Fox||$8,330,000||$65,300,000|
|Deepwater Horizon||Fox Searchlight||$6,340,000||$49,400,000|
|The Magnificent Seven (2016)||Sony / Columbia||$5,190,000||$84,730,000|
|Max Steel||Open Road||$4,500,000||$4,500,000|
|The Birth of a Nation||Lionsgate||$3,500,000||$13,090,000|
|Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life||Lionsgate||$3,440,000||$12,750,000|
Shawn Robbins, Jesse Rifkin, and Alex Edghill contributed to this report.
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