‘Ocean’s 8’ Will Run Off With Weekend #1 & ‘Hereditary’ Readies Record Debut for A24
One year ago, fueled by female audiences, Wonder Woman was lighting up the summer box office, en route to becoming the third largest domestic release of 2017. This weekend, the female-led ensemble cast of Ocean’s 8 looks to deliver some solid results of its own following a downer weekend last week. Also hitting theaters is A24’s much-talked about horror film Hereditary as well as Global Road’s Hotel Artemis. Meanwhile, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is getting its start internationally this weekend, two weeks ahead of its domestic bow.
Debuting in a healthy 4,145 theaters, Ocean’s 8 features a massive ensemble including Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Rihanna, Helena Bonham Carter, Sarah Paulson, Awkwafina and Mindy Kaling. The film fits within the Ocean’s film franchise, which began with the 2001 remake starring George Clooney, Brad Pitt and Matt Damon and debuted with $38.1 million. That filmed spawned two sequels, the last of which hit theaters eleven years ago, which is just one of the reasons comping for this title has been a little difficult.
While some are pointing to the 2016 Ghostbusters remake as a comp title, or even 2008’s Sex and the City, a variety of factors make both films, along with the original Ocean’s features, a difficult comparison to this latest release. Looking at films over the past five years or so, we’ve used IMDb page view data to draw our attention to films such as Cinderella, Maleficent and Dwayne Johnson’s San Andreas, the latter of which played to an audience that was 51% female and 70% of the overall audience was over the age of 25.
Analysis of IMDb page view data over the two weeks leading up to release shows Ocean’s 8 pacing about 20% behind Cinderella and Maleficent and just 10% behind San Andreas. It’s also dramatically outperforming the Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy comedy The Heat, and while that film played to an older audience, of which 65% were female, its R-rating makes it a tougher comp to rely on.
Overall, Warner Bros. is anticipating a debut in the mid-thirties while tracking as of last week had the film performing within the $35-40 million range. That being said, we’re having a hard time finding reason to go that low and we’re seeing signals this one could hit $50+ million. Right now we’re going out with a $45 million forecast, but won’t be surprised to see this one pop even higher.
Looking at a second place finish is Disney and Lucasfilms’s Solo: A Star Wars Story, dropping about 47% for a weekend around $14.5 million, pushing the film’s domestic gross to $175 million as it begins its third week in release.
Third place could be a tight race between Fox’s Deadpool 2, which begins its fourth weekend in release, and A24’s Hereditary, which will be the studio’s widest release yet, debuting in nearly 3,000 locations. Deadpool 2 should drop around 44% and bring in right around $13 million as it nears $280 million domestically, but will that be enough to hold off Hereditary?
After debuting at the Sundance Film Festival in January, Hereditary has earned rave reviews including a review from The Hollywood Reporter saying it is “[a]rguable the most effective domestic horror chiller since The Conjuring and The Babadook” and Time Out called it “a new generation’s Exorcist”. That’s lofty praise and A24 is looking to take advantage, debuting the film in 2,964 theaters, the studio’s widest release yet topping It Comes at Night, which opened with $5.9 million in 2017 from 2,533 locations, the studio’s second largest opening ever. A24’s largest opening ever currently belongs to another festival darling and horror feature in The Witch, which opened in just 2,046 theaters with $8.8 million. So how does Hereditary stack up?
Fandango.com reports the film is second to just Ocean’s 8 heading into the weekend in terms of ticket sales and looking at IMDb page view data for the last two weeks, Hereditary is out-pacing both It Comes at Night and The Witch at the same point in the release cycle. In fact, it’s pacing just ahead of Oculus ($12m opening) and ahead of The Boy ($10.7m opening). All told, while we wouldn’t be at all shocked to see it slide into third place, right now we’re anticipating a fourth place finish with a strong $12 million three-day.
Rounding out the top five, look for STX’s Adrift to drop right around 45% for a $7.3 million weekend as it nears $25 million domestically.
Outside the top five we have Global Road’s Hotel Artemis, which will open in 2,340 theaters with the studio anticipating a debut in the mid-to-high single digits, which meshes well with our pre-release analysis. IMDb page view comparisons to films such as Criminal and The Last Stand all suggest debuts right around $7 million while comps to films including Collide and Bullet to the Head push expectations down closer to $5 million. Heading into the weekend our anticipated range is anywhere from $4-7 million with our current forecast targeting a $5 million debut.
Elsewhere, keep an eye on The Orchard’s American Animals which topped the weekend charts this past weekend based on per theater average with a solid $33,698 from four locations. This weekend the film expands into a total of 42 theaters and by the end of the month should be in over 400 locations nationwide.
Finally, Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment’s Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom began playing internationally yesterday in seven of the 48 markets it will release in this weekend before its North American release on June 22. The studio is reporting a $20.2 million opening day from Korea, France, Indonesia, Germany, Philippines, Belgium and French-speaking Switzerland including a record-breaking opening day of $9.7 million in South Korea. Previews also began in select markets on Wednesday including $2.9 million in the UK.
While the studio isn’t expecting the film to reach the heights of 2015’s Jurassic World it’s worth mentioning that film debuted in 67 markets and delivered the third largest overseas opening of all-time with $316.7 million. Other markets where Fallen Kingdom will see release this weekend include Denmark, Hong Kong, Italy, Netherlands, Russia, Spain, Thailand, India, China, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico just to name a few.
This weekend’s domestic forecast is directly below. This post will be updated on Friday morning with Thursday night preview results followed by Friday estimates on Saturday morning, and a complete weekend recap on Sunday morning.
Ocean’s 8 (4,145 theaters) – $45.0 M
Solo: A Star Wars Story (4,335 theaters) – $14.5 M
Deadpool 2 (3,823 theaters) – $13.0 M
Hereditary (2,964 theaters) – $12.0 M
Adrift (3,015 theaters) – $7.3 M
Avengers: Infinity War (2,882 theaters) – $6.0 M
Hotel Artemis (2,340 theaters) – $5.0 M
Book Club (2,802 theaters) – $4.6 M
Upgrade (1,458 theaters) – $2.5 M
Life of the Party (1,848 theaters) – $1.9 M