'Curse of La Llorona' Looks to Lead Calm Weekend before the 'Avengers' Storm
SATURDAY AM UPDATE: WB and New Line's The Curse of La Llorona is looking at a dominating weekend as the film brought in an impressive $11.8 million on Friday and is looking at a three-day weekend anywhere from $24-26 million. The film also received a "B-" CinemaScore.

Disney's release of Fox's Breakthrough brought in an estimated $3.8 million on Friday and is expected to deliver a $10-11 million three-day performance for a $14-15 million five-day after debuting on Wednesday.

The weekend's other new wide release on Wednesday was Disneynature's Penguins, which added an estimated $904k on Friday, falling short of pre-weekend expectations and the top ten as it heads toward a three-day performance around $1.5-2 million.

In other news, Captain Marvel appears to be taking advantage of the hype heading into the release of Avengers: Endgame next weekend as it brought in an estimated $3.1 million on Friday and just might top $400 million domestically this weekend.

You can check out all of the Friday estimates right here and we'll be back tomorrow morning with a complete look at the weekend.

FRIDAY AM UPDATE: Warner Bros. and New Line's release of The Curse of La Llorona delivered a healthy $2.75 million last night from Thursday previews beginning at 6PM. The performance is ahead of the $2.1 million for the first Annabelle film as well as tops the $2.3 million for Pet Sematary just a couple weeks ago ahead of its $24.5 million opening.

At the same time, Disney's release of Fox's Breakthrough brought in an estimated $1.55 million yesterday, which is still just a bit behind Miracles from Heaven suggesting the new release is maintaining pace with that 2016 film.

We'll take a closer look at things tomorrow morning once Friday estimates come in. For now you can check out our weekend preview below.

WEEKEND PREVIEW: Following a strong performance in March, the domestic box office has slowed throughout the early part of April and this weekend won't be much different. Of course, just like last April saw Avengers: Infinity War close out the month, this April will conclude with the highly anticipated release of Avengers: Endgame, and studios are making way for the release by saving any major releases for the weeks following Endgame's debut. As for this week's newcomers, we're seeing several titles made for specifically targeted audiences such as Wednesday's debuts of Breakthrough and Disneynature's Penguins along with tomorrow's launch of The Curse of La Llorona.

Warner Bros. and New Line are looking at their third straight weekend with the #1 film, this time around with the horror release, The Curse of La Llorona, debuting in 3,372 locations. While not specifically billed as a new entry in the Conjuring franchise, La Llorona does co-star Tony Amendola as priest Father Perez from the Annabelle film and is being marketed as "from the producers of The Conjuring franchise". The loose association with that universe should add to the film's weekend profile, while online ticket retailer Fandango.com is reporting La Llorona is outpacing Insidious: The Last Key ($29.5m debut) at the same point in the sales cycle.

That said, a look at IMDb page view data leading up to release shows La Llorona trailing The Last Key as well as the two previous installments in the Insidious franchise along with Annabelle: Creation, though not by margins significant enough for us to believe this film is going to miss expectations. In fact, we're anticipating a performance anywhere from $16-19 million, currently forecasting an $17+ million debut.

WB will also land in the runner-up position with Shazam! as it looks to pull in $13.5 million. The film just topped $100 million at the domestic box office yesterday and by the end of the weekend it should be around $117 million or so as it begins its third week in release.

In third is one half of the week's new wide Wednesday releases and the first official Fox release following Disney's acquisition of the company. Breakthrough is the latest release from producer DeVon Franklin who recently delivered such faith-based features as The Star and Miracles from Heaven, the latter of which was also a Wednesday release and Breakthrough is looking as if it will deliver a similar performance. Breakthrough brought in $1.88 million on Wednesday, coming in just $386 behind Miracles from Heaven's first day. Similarly, IMDb page view data shows Breakthrough pacing fractions behind the 2016 release, which was released in mid-March while Breakthrough will be able to take advantage of the Easter weekend. All told, we're looking for Breakthrough to debut with anywhere from $13-14 million for the three-day and a five-day cume around $17-18 million.

Universal's Little is entering its sophomore frame after a solid start last weekend. We're currently anticipating a -41% dip and a three-day performance around $9+ million for a domestic cume nearing $30 million.

Rounding out the top five is Disney's Dumbo, looking at a weekend performance around $5.5 million for a domestic cume just on the edge, if not topping, $100 million as it enters its fourth week in release.

Elsewhere, Disney debuted their latest Disneynature documentary Penguins on Wednesday with $500k and a look at IMDb page view data shows the film pacing right in line with previous Disneynature installments suggesting a three day around $4-5 million and a $6-7 million five-day start.

Additionally, Bleecker will expand the release of Teen Spirit from writer/director Max Minghella and starring Elle Fanning into 696 locations (+692) and we're currently expecting the film to draw in anywhere from $1.5-2.5 million for the weekend and a place outside the top ten.

In limited release, look for Fox's release of Kalank to open around $2 million from 320 locations for a place just outside the top ten. Additionally, Lionsgate will open Fast Color in 25 theaters; Neon's Little Woods opens in 33 theaters; and Red Joan from IFC will debut in 3 locations.

This weekend's 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.

  • The Curse of La Llorona (3,372 theaters) - $17.0 M
  • Shazam! (4,183 theaters) - $13.5 M
  • Breakthrough (2,824 theaters) - $13.0 M
  • Little (2,667 theaters) - $9.1 M
  • Dumbo (3,225 theaters) - $5.5 M
  • Captain Marvel (2,653 theaters) - $5.2 M
  • Hellboy (3,303 theaters) - $5.0 M
  • Pet Sematary (3,146 theaters) - $4.7 M
  • Penguins (1,815 theaters) - $4.5 M
  • Us (2,262 theaters) - $3.8 M

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