The first weekend of March will see the wide release of two new films, all while Marvel’s latest blockbuster looks to continue its reign atop the box office during Oscar weekend.
- Death Wish has consistently trended upward in recent weeks as its marketing campaign has taken effect, driving strong interest from older male audiences — a crowd that pushed several films to over-perform against expectations earlier this year with the likes of 12 Strong, Den of Thieves, and The Commuter. Facebook activity is nearing 100,000 fans with strong growth in the past ten days, an impressive feat for a non-major studio title. Traditional tracking shows overall interest not far behind the levels of films like The Accountant and Jack Reacher: Never Go Back, while Facebook activity is comparable to the former of those two films. The studio expects around mid-teen millions, but the upside for $20 million or more this weekend is definitely on the table.
- Red Sparrow will aim to marry its source novel’s fan base with that of Jennifer Lawrence’s own following. Social media buzz has been generally healthy as the film’s Twitter activity exceeds that of The Girl on the Train and Atomic Blonde. Adult crowds looking for more serious fare in the wake of the Marvel blockbuster and last week’s successful comedy Game Night will be key to Sparrow‘s prospects this weekend. The film’s range is wider than once expected with what could be a debut anywhere between $16 million and $23 million.
- Black Panther has beaten expectations two weekends in a row and could do the same again as word of mouth shows little sign of slowing down. Our current range for the phenom’s third weekend extends between $60 million and $70 million, give or take some change. Anything between $55.6 million (Avengers 1) and $68.5 million (Avatar) would give it the third highest third weekend of all-time.
- Between the two new releases, Death Wish may have slightly more upside due to its counter-programming elements and general review-proof nature. Still, Black Panther‘s continued dominance over the market will likely skew all comparisons. Red Sparrow‘s mixed reviews (59 percent on Rotten Tomatoes) and the potentially inflated online conversation driven by J-Law fans may work against it as adult audiences continue to spread positive word of mouth about a much lighter and date-friendly option in Game Night, which is showing early signs of strong holding power.
Top 10 Comparisons
Boxoffice forecasts this weekend’s top ten films will accumulate around $141 million, which would represent a 16 percent decline from the same weekend last year when Logan shredded a mighty $88.4 million opening weekend, Get Out secured a stellar $28.2 million second weekend, and The Shack tallied a $16.2 million debut as part of an overall $168 million top ten frame that kick-started a record-breaking March at the box office.
|Film||Distributor||3-Day Weekend Forecast||Projected Domestic Total through Sunday, March 4||% Change from Last Wknd|
|Black Panther||Disney / Marvel||$67,000,000||$503,100,000||-40%|
|Game Night||Warner Bros. / New Line||$10,700,000||$33,200,000||-37%|
|Peter Rabbit||Sony / Columbia||$8,900,000||$82,900,000||-30%|
|Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle||Sony / Columbia||$3,900,000||$392,500,000||-31%|
|Fifty Shades Freed||Universal||$3,200,000||$95,500,000||-55%|
|The Greatest Showman||Fox||$2,500,000||$164,400,000||-27%|
|The 15:17 to Paris||Warner Bros.||$1,800,000||$35,200,000||-49%|