June’s first weekend is going to be a relatively quiet one at the box office.
One year after Warner Bros. boldly dated Wonder Woman for the post-Memorial Day slot to great success, most of the major studios wisely avoided it this year after a month of that included three heavy-hitting franchise blockbusters driving the first $1 billion+ grossing May in five years. Unfortunately, however, the most recent of that trio is performing far below expectations and won’t carry as much of the market as once hoped.
That said, three openers will hit theaters nationwide this weekend in an effort to counter-program the big boys as Solo aims to retain the top spot for a second weekend.
Solo: A Star Wars Story
Second Weekend Range: $25 – 35 million
In the more uniquely strange box office stories in quite some time, the news for Disney’s second anthology film in the franchise hasn’t improved much since its significant under-performance on opening weekend caught the industry off guard over Memorial Weekend. Although the movie has its share of supporters, and praise for director Ron Howard’s time-crunch efforts on a troubled production, Solo is disproving the notion that “any press is good press.” Rather, the film’s year-long battle against headlines has convinced a sizable portion of the Star Wars fan base to sit this one out regardless of the film’s general word of mouth from actual patrons.
Unfortunately, that snowball effect isn’t showing signs of slowing down in the middle of the week so far as the film appears to be heading for a sophomore weekend that may land close to or slightly under $30 million. This would be in line with recent Memorial Day releases from the X-Men, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Fast & Furious franchises that each dropped in the 60%+ range, although a more optimistic comparison could be Disney’s own Tomorrowland in 2015 (which dropped 57%).
Opening Weekend Range: $4 – 10 million
Johnny Knoxville’s Jackass fans are the target audience here, but the film’s pre-release social media metrics and general tracking are more in line with films like Popstar and The Brothers Grimsby. One of the biggest sources of buzz deflation may also be coming from Deadpool 2, which remains the top choice among audience surveys for those still craving a dose of R-rated comedy.
Opening Weekend Range: $10 – 15 million
Counter-programming the key players already out there, the source novel’s fans plus Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin could combine for enough power to help this young adult survival/drama generate a solid opening. With appeal to and minimal competition for date night crowds among teen and 20-something viewers, we wouldn’t be surprised if this one comes in slightly ahead of expectations.
Opening Weekend Range: $2 – 5 million
Opening semi-wide in 1,400 locations this weekend, the film’s release is comparable to BH Tilt’s previous efforts with The Belko Experiment. Social media trends for Upgrade aren’t quite on par with that film so far, and competing with three other major films for the adult male audience will present an additional challenge this weekend.
Top 10 Comparisons
Boxoffice projects this weekend’s top ten films will account for an estimated $89 million. That would represent a 50 percent decline from the same frame last year when Wonder Woman debuted to $103.3 million as part of an overall $179.0 million top ten weekend.
|Film||Distributor||3-Day Weekend Forecast||Projected Domestic Total through Sunday, June 3||% Change from Last Wknd|
|Solo: A Star Wars Story||Disney / Lucasfilm||$28,000,000||$147,100,000||-67%|
|Avengers: Infinity War||Disney / Marvel||$9,200,000||$641,500,000||-47%|
|Life of the Party||Warner Bros. / New Line||$2,500,000||$45,100,000||-54%|
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