'Birds of Prey' Flying Much Lower than Expected
SATURDAY AM UPDATE: WB's Birds of Prey is flying much lower than expected, bringing in an estimated $13 million (including $4 million from previews) on Friday with expectations for a debut around $32-33 million. The performance is far lower than all expectations, including WB's $45 million pre-weekend figure. Opening day audiences gave the film a "B+" CinemaScore.

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: WB's Birds of Prey brought in $4 million from Thursday evening previews, which is a bit on the light side if you consider Shazam! brought in $5.9 million in previews as did John Wick: Chapter 3. It is nearly double the $2.1 million in previews Tomb Raider brought in and just a bit ahead of the $3.4 million in previews Kingsman: The Golden Circle delivered. All told, this would suggest Birds of Prey is more likely to finish closer to studio expectations and a mid-$40 million performance, though if word of mouth spreads things could pick up as the weekend goes on.

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: After three straight weeks of Bad Boys for Life topping the weekend box office, Warner Bros. is bringing their own R-rated actioner to the fray with Birds of Prey featuring Margot Robbie back as Harley Quinn, a character she first brought to life in 2016's Suicide Squad. The film will easily top this Oscar weekend, but can it deliver a top ten February opening?

February has seen its share of big openings, most notably the $200+ million debut for Black Panther two years ago, but after that three R-rated features in Deadpool, Fifty Shades of Grey and The Passion of the Christ fill out the list and this weekend Birds of Prey, another R-rated film hoping to join the list of February's top ten openers. Warner Bros. will open the film in over 4,200 locations and is anticipating a debut topping $45 million while tracking we've seen is much higher, looking for an opening anywhere from $56-60 million and we're finding ourselves settling somewhere in the middle of all that.

A look at IMDb page view performance for Birds of Prey over the two weeks leading up to release shows it pacing behind the likes of Logan, Joker, Aquaman and Shazam!. More favorable comps show the film pacing ahead of John Wick: Chapter 3 and Hobbs & Shaw, though their release timing within the Summer corridor does make those comps a bit hazy. As much as we see potential for the film to land within the estimates tracking is seeing, a performance closer to $48-53 million is where we're settling. Reviews are certainly working in the film's favor and should audiences find themselves agreeing with the critical consensus -- 88% on RottenTomatoes and 61 on Metacritic -- word of mouth could help bolster not only the film's weekend performance, but push it into that $55+ million range. For now, we're going with a $51 million forecast, but if it manages to top $53 million it will find itself as one of the ten largest February openings ever.

Sony's Bad Boys for Life will continue its strong performance this weekend, slipping to second after three weeks at #1. We're looking for the film to slip -44% or so and end up around $10 million for the three-day as the film's domestic cume nears $165 million.

Universal's favorite to win Best Picture at the Oscars this weekend, 1917, is looking to add another $5.5+ million as we head into Oscar weekend and folks do some last minute catch-up on this year's crop of nominees. Should that forecast hold look for the film to near $130 million by the end of the weekend, but just how many gold statues will it also be taking home?

Universal may be able to scrap for a fourth place finish as well if Dolittle can hold off Jumanji: The Next Level, both of which are looking to bring in around $4.5 million this weekend. Of course, the two have enjoyed very different levels of success since release as Dolittle will push over $60 million this weekend while Jumanji nears $300 million domestically.

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.

  • Birds of Prey (4,236 theaters) - $51.0 M
  • Bad Boys for Life (3,297 theaters) - $10.0 M
  • 1917 (3,548 theaters) - $5.7 M
  • Jumanji: The Next Level (2,585 theaters) - $4.5 M
  • Dolittle (3,462 theaters) - $4.3 M
  • The Gentlemen (2,557 theaters) - $3.1 M
  • Gretel & Hansel (3,023 theaters) - $3.0 M
  • Star Wars: Episode IX - The Rise of Skywalker (1,746 theaters) - $2.2 M
  • Knives Out (1,443 theaters) - $1.9 M
  • Little Women (1,688 theaters) - $1.8 M

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