I am going to see “Dark Water” first and then “Fantastic Four” after. I suspect both will only be mediocre, but I want to know that for myself.

Gang of ‘Four’ ready to rumble at box office
LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) – With such sci-fi and comic movies as “War of the Worlds” and “Batman Begins” already dominating ticket sales, the superheroes of “Fantastic Four” face a tough task at the weekend box office.
The Marvel Comics adaptation should have less trouble fending off competition from fellow rookie “Dark Water,” a horror remake starring Jennifer Connelly.
20th Century Fox originally planned to open “Fantastic Four” on the Fourth of July holiday weekend and even had ballyhooed a “Fantastic 4th” in early materials for the film, but Paramount’s “War of the Worlds” bullied itself onto the coveted date (eventually earning $77.6 million for the four-day weekend) and Fox backed down, shifting back a week its hopeful summer bonanza.
It remains to be seen whether the strategy will work. Conservative estimates for the film’s first three days are running in the mid- to high-$30 million range.
That would be an improvement over Fox’s most recent entry into the Marvel arena; the studio opened “Elektra” in January to a disappointing $14 million. Although Marvel has had tremendous success with Sony’s “Spider-Man” and Fox’s “X-Men” and “Daredevil” films, not all adaptations are hits, with “Elektra” and Lions Gate’s “The Punisher” being prime examples.
Rated PG-13, “Four” stars Ioan Gruffudd as Mr. Fantastic, Michael Chiklis as the Thing, Jessica Alba as Invisible Woman and Chris Evans as Human Torch. With a lesser-known cast and an inexperienced action-adventure director in Tim Story (“Taxi”), Fox is fielding a number of unknown variables. Many in the industry predict that if the box office wasn’t in the middle of a slump, the film likely would cross the $40 million mark.
Meanwhile, Disney bows its first entry in the Japanese horror-remake game, “Dark Water.” In the wake of the success of DreamWorks’ “The Ring” and “The Ring Two,” along with Sony’s surprise hit “The Grudge” last year, the genre still looks ripe for the picking. But industry insiders believe “Dark Water” might not measure up. Industry insiders put its opening in the $10 million-$12 million range.
From Brazilian director Walter Salles (“The Motorcycle Diaries”), the PG-13 release is an adaptation of the Japanese film from writer Koji Suzuki. Connelly stars as a woman who rents a decrepit apartment with her daughter only to find eerie happenings that threaten her sanity. John C. Reilly, Tim Roth and Dougray Scott round out the cast. “Dark Water” is tracking best among young girls.
“The Grudge” opened last year to $39 million, while “The Ring,” which bowed in 2002 and also was an adaptation of a Suzuki novel, opened to $15 million before going on to gross $128 million. “The Ring Two” opened this year to $35 million but stalled at $76 million.
In limited release, ThinkFilm will bow the Sundance favorite “Murderball,” a documentary about rugby-playing quadriplegics, in Los Angeles and New York.
Sony Pictures Classics will open “The Beautiful Country” in Los Angeles and New York. Roth, Bai Ling and Nick Nolte star in the R-rated film about a young man who flees Vietnam on a quest to find his American father.