Weekend Forecast: Will Detective Pikachu Dethrone Avengers: Endgame?; The Hustle & Poms Aim to Court Mother’s Day Audiences

As Marvel’s biggest film yet continues to dominate the market, this weekend will welcome a few more new releases aiming for a variety of audiences. Will the headlining opener be able to unseat the reigning weekend champ, though?

PROS:

  • Avengers: Endgame is likely to begin stabilizing its legs after the typical second weekend drop-off common to mega-openers. Infinity War itself eased 46 percent in its third frame one year ago, which was also Mother’s Day weekend.
  • Detective Pikachu should benefit from both its multi-generation appeal and the fact that it provides a shorter, PG-rated, family-friendly option for parents with kids too young for the Marvel epic. Final pre-release tracking positions interest comparable to recent films like Shazam!, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, and The LEGO Batman Movie.
  • The Hustle is driven by stars Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson, both of whom are coming off strong female-driven franchise successes (Ocean’s 8 and the Pitch Perfect series, respectively). Pre-release tracking suggests the film is generating comparable interest as Life of the Party, which also opened on Mother’s Day weekend last year.
  • Poms will cater to older female moviegoers, a smart play in a market largely absent of films aiming for that audience. Again, Mother’s Day should provide a boost on Sunday.
  • Tolkien, opening in semi-wide release, could appeal to die-hard fans of the author and The Lord of the Rings / Hobbit films. It has a fair shot to be Fox Searchlight’s best opener since 2016’s The Birth of a Nation ($7 million from 2,105 theaters) and 2015’s The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel ($8.5 million from 1,573 theaters).

CONS:

  • The biggest challenges for Pikachu appear to be its positioning in the shadow of Endgame — which will still be going strong and could top Avatar ($68.5 million) and/or Black Panther ($66.3 million) for the second or third highest third weekend ever.
  • Additionally, tracking for Pikachu hasn’t quite excelled to the levels once expected in long range reports, and critics’ reviews — while mostly positive and indicative of potential staying power — haven’t struck at the high level typically conducive to a breakout on the optimistic end of forecasts.
  • The Hustle and Poms each lack critics’ reviews as of this report, and could face some crossover competition from the well-received Long Shot.
  • Tolkien is, unfortunately, receiving lukewarm reviews, while tracking for the semi-wide release has proven challenging given the limited scope of its marketing and distribution.

Weekend Ranges

  • Avengers: Endgame ($67 – 77 million)
  • Detective Pikachu ($50 – 75 million)
  • The Hustle ($13 – 18 million)
  • Poms ($5 – 10 million)
  • Tolkien ($3 – 8 million)

Top 10 vs. Last Year

Boxoffice projects this weekend’s top ten films will increase approximately 41 – 46 percent from the same weekend last year. That comparable Mother’s Day frame was led by Infinity War‘s $62.1 million, ahead of Life of the Party‘s $17.9 million and Breaking In‘ $17.6 million debuts. The top ten that weekend generated $126.7 million.

Weekend Forecast

Film Distributor 3-Day Weekend Forecast Projected Domestic Total through Sunday, May 12 % Change from Last Wknd
Avengers: Endgame Disney / Marvel $70,700,000 $731,400,000 -52%
Pokémon: Detective Pikachu Warner Bros. $56,000,000 $56,000,000 NEW
The Hustle United Artists Releasing $15,000,000 $15,000,000 NEW
Poms STX $8,400,000 $8,400,000 NEW
Long Shot Lionsgate / Summit $6,600,000 $20,000,000 -32%
The Intruder Sony / Screen Gems $6,000,000 $20,000,000 -45%
Tolkien Fox Searchlight $5,500,000 $5,500,000 NEW
Uglydolls STX $4,200,000 $14,700,000 -51%
Captain Marvel Disney / Marvel $3,000,000 $424,900,000 -31%
Breakthrough Fox $2,900,000 $37,500,000 -26%

Forecasts subject to change as location counts are finalized before Friday.

Contact us for information about subscribing to Boxoffice’s suite of forecasting and data services.

googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1553617519041-1'); });

News Stories