Pair of Date Movies Battle for #1
Two book adaptations titles will battle for number one, as the tearjerker The Lucky One and the dating comedy Think Like a Man face off. Set for smaller numbers, the nature doc Chimpanzee opens in time for Earth Day. The box office is set to slip below year-ago levels, when the frame was boosted by Easter.
Warner Bros. targets young women with the romantic drama The Lucky One. Based on a novel by Nicolas Sparks, the PG-13 weeper stars Zac Efron and aims for the same audience that powered Dear John to a $30.4M bow in February 2010. However, that Channing Tatum vehicle bowed close to Valentine’s Day and boasted a bankable female lead in Amanda Seyfried. Instead, The Lucky One may open closer to Efron’s 17 Again, which opened this weekend in 2009 with $23.7M. As with most
Sony counters with a funnier date movie in Think Like a
Lastly, Disneynature goes after families with the wildlife doc Chimpanzee. The studio began releasing Earth Day docs in 2009 and returns have diminished as the subjects become more specific. Openings include $8.8M for 2009’s earth, $6.05M for 2010’s Oceans and $6M for last year’s African Cats. The former two saw midweek launches, while the latter had a Good Friday boost. Even though family competition has been light this year, nothing suggests the Tim Allen-narrated pic will go beyond the last two films. Opening in 1,500 theaters, Chimpanzee could see $6M this weekend.
After a month on top, The Hunger Games will slip from the pole. Facing two new films targeting females, a 45% drop to $11M is likely, giving Lionsgate a staggering total of $351M.
The Three Stooges has only mild buzz, so a 45% drop to $10M would give Fox’s bumbling comedy $30M in ten days, matching its budget.
With great reviews, A Cabin in the Woods will aim for a soft horror hold. A 50% tumble to $7M would give Lionsgate a ten-day total of $24M.
Overall, the box office should slip from 2011, when Rio remained at number one with $26.3M, but exceed 2010, when How to Train Your Dragon flew back on top with $15.3M. Easter fell this weekend in 2011.